Our Goals

These are our four big educational goals for our children and teens:

1. Have fun and feel a part of a community, where every child feels welcome, through service and community building activities

2. Gain basic religious literacy

3. Learn skills associated with liberal religion in a space where you can have a voice and share/explore interests

4. Prepare children to become UU adults, should they choose to do so when they’re old enough to make their own decisions, through a unique Sunday school experience

Program overview

Each year, we cover three main topic areas: Unitarian Universalist identity, Jewish and Christian traditions, and world religions.

Religious education classes are scheduled for 10:00-11:00 am Sunday mornings during the school year (mid-September through mid-June). Typically, children accompany their parents to the Meeting House to attend the first part of the worship service, and then after the Message for All Ages children and their teachers walk across the street to the Parish House for classes. Parents can pick up their children at the Parish House after the worship service.

Our programs


Childcare providers offer an environment that encourages discovery and provides a positive first experience within our church community.  Childcare is provided from 9:45 to 11:30 a.m. from mid-September through min-June. Childcare is located in Classroom 1 on the first floor of the Parish House.

Grade K-4

Fall: “Around the Church, Around the Year”: what does it mean to be a Unitarian Universalist, and what does it mean to be part of First Parish.

Winter: “Stories about God”: Exploring different concepts of a deity, including stories about the Christian God, and stories from other traditions. We acknowledge that some people do not have any belief in a deity.

Spring: “Picture Book World Religions”: Exploring non-Western religious traditions through carefully chosen children’s story books.

Grades 5-8

Children in this age group will explore what it means to be a Unitarian Universalist, and they will also learn about other faith traditions with the possibility of field trips to nearby faith communities.

Grades 8+

Teens in 8th grade and up are invited to join the Coming of Age program. This is a chance to explore self-identity, to figure out one’s deepest values. The program culminates with participants presenting a Sunday service to the congregation. The Coming of Age program is led by Tracey Newman, our Director of Religious Education, and Rev. Dan Harper, our minister.

Service opportunities

Seven children of varying ages standing in the woods in front of a sign that reads in part: "Trail maintenance by the youth of First Parish Church."
Trail maintenance service project, October, 2022

On several Sundays during the year, children and teens can participate in service projects during the regular Sunday school time. Here’s the schedule for 2022-2023:

October 2, volunteer at Holly Hill Farm, a nonprofit organic farm in Cohasset

October 16, maintain trails in Great Brewster Woods conservation area, just five minutes away from First Parish

January 8, volunteer work for the Scituate Animal Shelter

April, possible visit to Holly Hill

Other service opportunities may be scheduled during the year. Watch the First Parish newsletter for announcements.

Other programs

Our Whole Lives (OWL)

We cooperate with nearby Unitarian Universalist congregations to offer the OWL comprehensive sexuality education program for grades 7-9. This year, Old Ship UU church in Hingham is offering the OWL gr. 7-9 program on Sunday afternoons, and First Parish teens are participating. The program is currently closed.

OWL gr. 7-9 is part of a lifespan sexuality education program developed for use by Unitarian Universalists and others, which has received acclaim from both parents and teen participants alike. The OWL program is a values-based sexuality education program that embodies UU values, including the dignity of the individual, the importance of personal responsibility, and the essential interdependence of all people. Teens tell us that OWL feels safer and is more informative than sexuality education programs offered in the schools.

Community Fun

The First Parish FunRaiser Committee has planned a number of fun intergenerational events for the 2022-2023 year.

2022-2023 Tentative Schedule
See the First Parish email newsletter updates

Four people at a table playing a card game.
Playing Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza at Game Night.

September — Game Night. Bring your favorite games to play! Games that have been played at Game Nights have included everything from Uno, to Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza, to Settlers of Cataan, to Magic.

October — Potluck dinner

November — Game night

December — Village Fair. Always held on the first Saturday in December. Come help bake cinnamon buns and sell See’s Candies.

January — Game Night

February — Chocolate Auction

March — Game Night

April — Easter Egg hunt

May — Game Night

June — Lobster Rolls. Come help make and sell lobster rolls.

RE Committee and Staff

Religious Education Committee:
Meghan Neri, Chair
Phil Struzziero, Secretary
Stanley Fogelman, Member
Ngoc Dupont, Member
Sara Williams, Member
Tracey Newman, Director of Religious Education

Director of Religious Education (DRE): Tracey Newman
Tracey can be reached by email at education@firstparishcohasset.org

Our teachers

The Religious Education program at First Parish is always open and excited to welcome new teachers. Let a member of the Religious Education Committee or our Director of Religious Education know if you are interested in learning more about this rewarding way to be involved in your church community. We will happily walk you through the process.