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Create Strategic, Biblical, and Developmental Alignment with Orange Curriculum

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Alignment. We talk about this idea a lot at Orange. In fact, it’s one of our five core values

When we talk about alignment, we mean to say that a team needs a set of common values combined with a shared strategy. When those two things are in tandem, a team finds alignment. 

Alignment isn’t a given. In fact, more often than not, teams experience more misalignment due to natural drift when life becomes hectic and you just need to get the job done. 

Alignment requires intentionality. 

Because of that, the four Orange curriculum teams work closely together to ensure that our content is aligned and all headed in the same direction. 

We work to keep alignment in the following areas:

Strategic Alignment

All four Orange curriculum offerings include the same basic structure for their programming through seven distinct segments:

  • Prelude or Set Up
  • Social
  • Transitions
  • Story
  • Worship
  • Groups
  • Home

The way we implement each of these segments throughout each division is unique, but the goal for each one is the same.

All four Orange curriculum offerings also include the same devotional and discipleship practices 

  • Hear
  • Pray
  • Talk 
  • Live

This is how we help a kid or teenager build an everyday faith. 

All four Orange curriculum offerings include the same age-appropriate cues for championing parents through Parent Cue. 

Those are just a few alignment strategies you’ll find throughout the curriculum. We hope that the curriculum we create for churches helps leaders guide the next generation toward an everyday faith in the way of Jesus—with a perspective that transforms how kids and students love God, love themselves and their life, and love others.

Biblical Alignment

Throughout the course of the year, each curriculum division covers different Bible stories and passages that connect authentically with their intended audience. Orange is not only intentional about which passages we choose, but also about how we discuss them with kids and students. 

Our shared starting point is an aligned foundation upon nine theological truths based on what Jesus said was most important in the Greatest Commandment: love for God, love for others, and love for oneself. Every story and passage we use throughout each phase of the curriculum is attached to one or more of these nine faith foundations. 

We also align on a shared goal to stay true to a person’s eventual understanding of a particular Bible story, passage, or theological concept. That means that from preschool through high school, we are intentional about what a kid needs to know and is able to understand at each phase of their development—including specific details of a story, the vocabulary we use, and how we define complex terms. Our approach to each phase builds on the previous understanding to ultimately create a full picture of the Biblical narrative and theological concept.

Developmental Alignment

Kids learn differently at each phase of their development. Orange curriculum intentionally takes these learning methods into consideration and uniquely builds each series to address the specific needs of a child’s particular phase.

All of our content takes into account how kids learn and think at their age. We work to align a developmental strategy that builds on learning pathways that will connect with where kids are in their phase of life. This includes the ways we share Bible stories in a large group setting, the sorts of activities and questions we include in our small group lessons, and even the sorts of activities and devotionals we hope kids engage with at home.

Curriculum Alignment

In addition to these broad alignments, we choose times to align specific series throughout the course of a yearly scope and cycle. We often decide these series based on topics that are relevant to families as a whole, versus a specific age group . . . or times of the year when churches have a more holistic approach to their content, like Christmas, Easter, and summer. 

This sort of alignment can appear in a few different ways:

Full Alignment

This happens when two or more of the curriculum strategies align on everything—including theme, memory verse, and weekly Bible stories. More than likely, this happens between First Look and 252 Kids during the summer months of June and July. 

XP3 Middle School and High School also have several series where this happens throughout the course of a school year. The only difference would be that while stories are the same, themes might be different to connect with each specific age group.

Note that even with full alignment, Bottom Lines, Key Questions, and application points will often be different for each curriculum division based on their unique developmental phase. 

Seasonal Experience  Alignment

Whether it be an Advent Box or a Free Christmas Party Planning Kit, throughout the course of the year, we include different series and experiences with partial alignment, in which two or more of the curriculum divisions will include several of the same Bible stories for that month or series. This sort of alignment is typical during the Easter or Christmas holidays, when everyone covers the Nativity or resurrection stories, but does so in age-appropriate ways.

Topical Alignment

This happens when all four curriculum divisions align to cover the same broad topic or Biblical concept. Each division will have their own developmentally appropriate Bible stories and Bottom Lines, but together, they provide an intentional way for your whole family ministry to engage kids in learning about these important topics.

For example, this sort of alignment appears in this year’s teaching plan during the months of September 2024 and January 2025. For September, each of the four curriculum divisions will help kids and students discover more about what it means to shine the light of Jesus to the world around them, based on Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5:14-16. In January, each division will focus on how kids and students can trust God to help them process their emotions. Each curriculum covers different emotions that are unique to each phase of development. 

The Orange curriculum teams are constantly meeting with each other to ensure that we stay aligned with what we teach and how we teach. We are always on the lookout for more ways we can align our curriculum to help churches and families build an everyday faith in the hearts of the next generation.

If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to reach out to your Orange Specialist. They’re always available to answer any questions you might have and help you make the most of Orange curriculum in your unique local church . . . and to help you champion alignment in your own ministries. And be sure to download our latest curriculum Scope and Cycle to discover the specific teaching plan for the coming year. We can’t wait to hear how you implement Orange curriculum in your church!

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