Setting aside a regular time to be still in the presence of God and learn the stories of faith is essential to a child who needs a sense of being surrounded and upheld by God’s love.
Godly Play is a method of Christian education and spiritual direction created primarily for children aged 5-11. Godly Play teaches children the art of using religious language, parables, sacred stories, moments of silence, and liturgical action stories to help them become more fully aware of the mystery of God’s presence around them and in their lives.
Godly Play was developed by Jerome Berryman, an Episcopal priest, author, and teacher. Based on the Montessori method of experiential learning, Godly Play uses a careful telling of scripture stories and engaging story figures to encourage children to seek and find their own answers to their faith questions. This unique approach to religious education invites children to “wonder” about themselves, God and the world, in a way that is playful and meaningful to them. ”Wondering” questions are offered to the children. Questions such as, “I wonder what you like best about this story?” ”I wonder what is the most important part of the story?” “I wonder who you are in the story?” These questions are always open-ended and allow children to participate in the reflective process without fear of right or wrong answers.
A special Godly Play Orientation is provided for parents new to St. Dunstan’s to acquaint them with the Godly Play method of teaching. Parents are encouraged to visit a class to give them a better idea what their children experience each Sunday in Godly Play. Learn more about What Happens in Godly Play.
video produced by St John’s Episcopal Church, Stamford, CT
Godly Play Teaches. . . .
. . . . reliance upon God who is accessible and full of grace in a mystery of life.
. . . . the classic rhythm for living modeled in the Bible: a balance of action and reflection, engagement and prayer …… that everything in God’s creation is changed with the possibility of holiness, including each of us and that we are in relationship with everything in creation.
Godly Play helps children and their teachers build a spiritual rule of life.
Godly Play helps children know God not just know about God.
Godly Play is a discovery teaching method engaging the whole child: heart, mind, hands, senses and intuition.
Godly Play puts God back into the center of daily life.