God loves kids, and we do too!

Growing up is hard.  Working out relationships with parents, siblings, and friends is hard.  And whether we’re talking about starting a new school, losing teeth, or fine motor skills—starting to find our way in the world is hard too.

The solid part about growing up though, is that God, God’s goodness, who God is to us—his creation—that never changes.

At Quest, we’re committed to hanging with kids through it all and doing it as loving truth-tellers.

We tell kids that they matter, that their lives have meaning and purpose.  We celebrate their accomplishments and encourage healthy ambition, but contend that true love and worth does not depend one iota on what they do.

This kind of truth-telling comes out at the front door of our classrooms, where kids are welcomed by other children and greeted by adult leaders who call them by name and ask about last week’s soccer game.  It comes out during musical worship and lesson time, where our hearts soak in, repeat, and rehearse words and stories straight out the Bible.  It comes out in small group time, where kids pray for each other and, using their hands, feet, mind, and heart, participate in activities that help them internalize each week’s lesson.

At Quest, relationships are the mission, because right relationships are at the heart of Jesus’s mission.  We share this value in the kids’ classrooms, and we invite you to be part of it.

In our nursery, we create a safe, warm, and loving environment for the youngest among us.  It is staffed with two trained, background checked volunteers who play with and look after the needs of our babies.  Though filled with Cheerios, soft floors for toddlers to tumble on, bins and baskets of toys appropriate for the 0-3 crowd, and other miscellanies not typically associated with worshipful spaces, we believe the nursery is a sacred space.

We believe the children in our nursery are precious gifts from God and that they pick up the foundations of the faith that Jesus called us to as follower of him when they are in the company of caregivers who, with their words and their actions, love them like Jesus loves all of us.

Wide eyed preschoolers ask big questions, and, in our preschool classroom, we listen to those questions, ask our own, and use scripture to, in age-appropriate ways, unpack timeless and basic truths of the Christian gospel: God loves, God made us, God is good, and God never leaves us.  These tenets and other like them are taught with words and modeled with actions.  We use a play-based teaching model.  In addition to listening to engaging Bible stories, kids make pictures, build with blocks, and physically move around the room.  These activities are connected in clear and simple ways to each week’s lesson.

We hope that the life-giving truths we teach our preschoolers will stick with them as they mature, which is part of the reason we place high value not just on teaching them information about God, but in having them experience God’s peace and presence.  In our pre-K classroom, this means prayer, in its many forms, is very important, as is musical worship.

The K-5 room is a high-energy space where interests, passions, dreams for the future, apprehension about tough relationships, and other young, coming of age thoughts and experiences are shared in community.  For some kids, faith and what it means to follow Jesus isn’t something they’ve ever considered before.  Other kids walk in, hearts and lives firmly set in that direction.  Still others, fall everywhere else along the spectrum of desire, interest, knowledge, and experience with God.  With this mix of kids, our classroom becomes a safe space for learning, discovery, honest questions, and sincere responses.

Each week, a large group leader, with props and engaging storytelling methods, leads the kids in a game and teaches a lesson.  A worship leader sings and dances with the kids, and the class takes an offering as an act of worship and community practice of generosity.  We break into small groups by grades: K-1, 2-3, and 4-5, which affords the children the opportunity to engage with God in hands-on ways that fit with their own development and personal experiences as kids just entering school, students learning to read, and preteens whose middle school years linger just ahead of them.