Our scope was selected using the process detailed here

I then printed the names of each rotation on slips of paper -- different colors for Old Testament, New Testatment, and Christmas/Easter. (I am a visual person, and that helped me -- and the others) to see at a glance that we were more or less "balanced" each year.

We (3 members of the Curriculum Planning and Writing Team) then started "dealing out" the slips in six rows (the years) with 13 columns in each row (we do four week rotations, so we can do 13 in a year).

Since we are new at writing and because we are a new church and want to have especially attractive stories our first year, 2003/2004 has more "blockbuster" sorts of stories and also stories that have been Writing Team projects or that have lots of lessons on this site. (The major exception is "Easter through the eyes of Isaiah" which I wanted to do in the same year as the writing team's "Christmas through the eyes of Isaiah" -- we may regret it, but we can always change the topic if it proves too difficult!)

We remembered Neil MacQueen's suggestion about placing "less important" stories in the summer (see his excellent article here). "Wet" stories also were put in the hot summer months (in case we decide to get crazy and plan an outside splashy lesson...). Each year we do a Christmas/Advent themed rotation in December and a Holy Week related rotation around Easter.

The first rotation of each school year will be in mid-August when the children return to school (so we have 4 rotations before Christmas).

We also tried to link things together thematically and to have the "big" stories that won't fit in one rotation (such as Exodus and Joseph) together.

As we arranged the stories, some loose (very loose!) themes connecting the lessons in a year emerged. They are noted on the following list.

The most important thing we need to keep in mind is that the sequence (and scope) is not written in stone, and may be adjusted when we sit down to plan a lesson and decide there is not enough material for four workshops. This is a starting point, and is allowed to grow and adapt with us as we feel led by the Spirit.

Themes: Friends, prophecy,

Creation - Gen. 1/Gen. 2
David and Goliath - 1 Sam 17
Jesus heals a paralyzed man (faithful friends) - Mark 2:1-12
Saul on the Road to Damascus - Acts 9
Christmas through the eyes of Isaiah
John baptizes Jesus
Jesus calls the disciples - various
Jesus teaches (Sermon on the Mount) & Beatitudes
Easter through the eyes of Isaiah
Nicodemus - John 3
Parable of the sower/four soils - Mark 4:3-8
Noah/Flood/Covenant - Gen 6-9

* Christmas is always in the Christmas rotation; Easter Sunday is always one Sunday during the Easter Rotation.

Themes: Law, prayer,

Exodus I: Miriam saves her brother - Ex 1-2 and Moses returns to Egypt (incl burning bush) - Ex 3-4 and Moses, Pharaoh and 10 Plagues - Ex 5-12 and Crossing the Red Sea - Ex 14-15
Exodus II: Wandering in Wilderness/manna and water - Ex 16-17 and Ten Commandments - Ex 19-20 (combine w/ Golden calf - Ex 32)
Great Commission - Matt 28:16-20
Peter and Cornelius - Acts 10:1-11:18
Christmas through the eyes of Mary
Boy Jesus in the Temple (Lk 2:41-52)
Jesus teaches us to pray (Lords' Prayer)
Passover - Ex 12
Last Supper/foot washing *
Parable of the talents - Luke 19:11-27
Parable of two men who prayed (Pharisee and tax collector) - Luke 18:9-14
Paul's shipwreck and voyage to Rome - Acts 27-28
Jacob's dream (ladder) - Gen 28

note: one extra Sunday this year for a 5 week rotation or a one day program/event – anytime during the year (just adjust so Easter Sunday falls in the Easter rotation).

Themes: Forgiveness,

Adam and Eve/Fall - Gen. 3
Jesus and the children - Mark 10:13-16
Jacob's favorite son (coat of many colors) - Gen 37
Joseph: Joseph in Egypt/interpreting dreams - Gen 40-41; Joseph helps his brothers - Gen 42-45
Christmas through the eyes of Joseph
Jesus heals a man w/ leprosy - Mark 1: 40-45
Parable of the Good Samaritan/who is my neighbor? - Luke 10 (Great Commandment?)
Mary and Martha
trial/Peter's denial *
Parable of the unforgiving servant - Luke 18:21-35
Isaac blesses Jacob - Gen 27 (possibly combine w/ other Jacob stories — selling birthright & Esau forgives Jacob)
Saul is afraid/Saul is jealous - 1 Sam 13, 15, 18 and David and Jonathan - 1 Sam 18-20

Themes: Shepherd,

Jesus calms the sea
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego - Daniel 3
Samuel anoints David - 1 Sam 16
Psalm 23
Christmas through the eyes of the shepherds
Parable of the Lost Son (Prodigal) - Luke 15 (possibly with Lost Sheep and Lost Coin)
feeding the 5000
Jesus in the wilderness/temptation (Lent)
Easter through the eyes of Mary, mother of Jesus
Tower of Babel - Gen 11
the Temple, a house for God - 2 Sam 5: 1-7, 1 Kings 5-8, 2 Chron 6 (combine with Solomon's wisdom - 1 Kings 3, 4?)

Themes: God calls us

ABRAHAM: God makes a promise - Gen 15 & Abraham/Sarah/Isaac/Covenant - Gen 17-21
ISAAC: Sacrificing Isaac - Gen 22; Rebecca and Isaac - Gen 24
Philip and the Ethiopian - Acts 8:26-40
Peter's escape from prison - Acts 12 or Paul and Silas in prison - Acts 16:16-40
three kings/Epiphany
Rich Young Man
Vine and Branches
Easter through the eyes of Peter
Jesus appears to Peter and others/"Feed my Sheep" - John 21
Acts 2 community - Acts 2:42
Paul's letters/fruit of the spirit - Galatians 5:22-23
Parable of the Great Banquet
Jesus/Peter walk on water - Matt 14:22-33

Themes: we can count on God to keep His promises,

Entering promised land (crossing the Jordan) - Joshua 1-4
Walls of Jericho - Joshua 2, 5-6
Prophet Elijah and priests of Baal contest - 1 Kings 18
Hannah prays for a baby - 1 Sam 1-2; God calls Samuel - 1 Sam 3
Christmas through the eyes of Simeon and Anna (presentation in the Temple) - Luke 2
Daniel and the Lions - Daniel 6
Jesus and blind Bartimaeus
Lazarus is alive! - John 11:1-53
Crucifixion; Resurrection *
Ascension + Pentecost - Acts 2
Elisha and Namaan
Exile and Return - Ezra 1-6

Original Post
We are writing our lesson plans as we go along and are not very far ahead of the actual teaching of the lessons, I am sorry to say. (My goal is for the teachers to have the plans 2 weeks before the Bible study which we try to have 2 weeks before the rotation begins.) So Christmas through the eyes of the shepherds will be written by Nov 2004.

Which you will notice is way ahead of schedule, because the six year plan is a flexible document and less than a year into it we are revising it.

Our pastor is preaching through OT stories this year and asked if we could teach the same stories in Sunday School. We compromised by picking some of the key stories that were already in our scope and will be teaching them for 4 weeks. So one week out of every 4 the SS lesson will match the sermon. But it is all tieing together nicely, since for example hearing sermons about Abraham and Jacob leads nicely into a lesson that morning about Joseph.

I have not reconfigured the six year plan yet, but I have posted the 2004 schedule at our church's web site and will post the revised six year plan there sooner or later: www.rivercommunity.org.
Here is the 2004 line-up:
John Baptizes Jesus (we had already started writing this one when we were told about the year through the OT plan)
Joseph and His Brothers
Joseph in Egypt
10 Commandments
David Is Anointed King
Jesus the Good Shepherd and Psalm 23
Solomon: Granted Wisdom and Builds the Temple
Elisha and Namaan
Daniel's Friends and the Fiery Furnace
Christmas through the eyes of the Shepherds

who has realized she needs to stop fighting the lessons in being flexible God keeps sending her way Wink
Well, God really must feel I need lessons in flexibility. Eek We have left WORM (at least for now) and moved on to a small group/large group format. I certainly feel much sadness, but also I must admit a bit of relief, because as part of a two person writing team, I was definitely exhausted.

The small group/large group format also works better with our facility and growing number of regulars (we have started doing Sunday School twice on Sundays) and our large number of visitors.

I'll still be around, writing for the rotation.org writing team and whatnot, but if you are wondering when I am going to post the rest of the lesson plans listed above, it may be a while. Wink (or never. We'll see where God leads us next.)

Blessings and peace,
Amy Smile
(who actually is getting to bed before midnight most of the time these days....)

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