Programs by Age Group 2022-23

Image by Anita Smith from Pixabay

Sunday Morning Small Groups, in-person beginning 9/18/22!


Nursery/Toddler Room will be open for all children fewer than three years of age. A staff person and a volunteer will both be present to care for your little ones. Parents and caregivers are also welcome to stay with their children if they wish, and to use the room for feeding and diapering as needed.

Prek-1st Grade & 2nd-5th Grade groups will be engaging with our monthly themed Soul Matters curriculum. Sessions include chalice lighting, check in, follow-up conversation about the story in service, and a combination of seated and movement activities related to the story and theme. Sessions end at 11:15, and adults are expected to pick up their children in these two groups from their classrooms. This year’s themes include:

September: Belonging
October: Courage
November: Change
December: Wonder
January: Finding Our Center
February: Love
March: Vulnerability
April: Resistance
May: Creativity
June: Delight

6th-7th Grade will be learning about Unitarian Universalism as well as other world religions in their Crossing Paths curriculum. Led by volunteers, this course encourages respectful wonder about and interest in the faiths being studied, honors the experiences of people familiar with those faiths, and features visits to their sacred spaces and services. A parent/guardian orientation will take place during the first group meeting the morning of 9/18/22.

8th-9th Grade will be doing Our Whole Lives, an age-appropriate human sexuality course led by specially-trained facilitators that supports each young person’s ability to make responsible, fact-based decisions about their bodies, behavior, and relationships. Due to the sensitive nature of this course, it is not open to visitors and all participants must be registered ahead of the program’s start date of 9/18/22. A required parent/guardian orientation will take place in person at Albany UU on 9/11/22 from 12-2. If you can not attend the orientation, please contact Elizabeth to make alternative arrangements. 8th/9th OWL will meet most Sundays from 10-11:30AM, and a calendar will be distributed to families for easy reference.

10th Grade youth have the opportunity to participate in Coming of Age. In this yearlong program, teens will learn about themselves and Unitarian Universalism through the process of identifying and expressing their current religious/spiritual/ethical identity. The positive and caring atmosphere of this Rite of Passage experience is supported by our minister, as well as Religious Education staff and volunteers. Usual components include a service project, an individual creative expression of each person’s learning and growth to be shared with the congregation, and a Heritage Trip to enhance learning about UU history. This group meets on the first Sunday of the month from 12-1:30pm from October-May (except for January, when it meets on 1/8/23). It is also open to 11th and 12th grade students who have not previously participated in COA.

Youth Group is open to all high school aged youth, and weekly sessions seek to provide connection, community, and a supportive space. They also like to have fun! Lead Youth Advisor Adrian Cattell is once again guiding the group with help from volunteers. One new activity for Youth Group this year will be the opportunity to help plan a Heritage Trip, to be undertaken along with the Coming of Age group. Since recent COA groups have not been able to take the trip, this year’s will be open to everyone in Youth Group so those who missed out will have a second chance. Scheduling for the trip will be determined early in the fall. 

Registration is strongly requested so that we can plan the safest possible environments for children, youth, volunteers and staff. Thanks for your cooperation and understanding! You can register here

Newcomers are always welcome, and visitors wishing to attend without registering can instead leave the name and contact number of a responsible adult, and any relevant health information (food allergies, etc), with an adult volunteer in the child or youth’s classroom when dropping them off. This enables our volunteers to provide the safest possible environment for the children and youth in their care.

Current policy and practices around COVID are made by Albany UU’s COVID Response Team, and can be found here. This year (2022-23) all volunteers working with children and youth are strongly encouraged to be fully vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19. 

We want your child’s experience at Albany UU to be as positive as possible. Please contact Director of Religious Education Elizabeth Baldes at if there is anything we can do to support you, your child, or your family.