Programs for Youth at Hartford Monthly Meeting and New England Yearly Meeting
First Day School
Hartford Meeting’s First Day School is usually divided into different age groups depending on the number of children in regular attendance. Approximately 15 minutes after worship begins, a First Day School teacher will rise and lead the children to their classes. Classes are held from 10:15 to 11:00 A.M. The First Day School year begins the First Day following Labor Day weekend and ends the second First Day in June. Students may join a class at any point in the school year. All classes follow a semester structure, which may include Quakerism, the Bible, Peace and Social Concerns, and Earth Care Witness. There is no regular First Day School in the summer but an informal program is held with Meeting volunteers supervising the younger children. Comments and/or inquiries about curriculum should be directed to the Religious Education Committee.
Childcare is available for children in the nursery during meeting for worship. Children three and over may attend First Day School. Parents are asked to accompany children to the nursery if their child cannot remain during Meeting for Worship or for the announcements that follow. If there is a large number of children in the nursery, parents may be asked to stay to help the caregiver. Parents are responsible for their own children after the Rise of Meeting, but childcare is usually provided when there is an adult activity after refreshments (such as business meeting or an 11th hour presentation). During the summer all children sit in Meeting for Worship for the first fifteen minutes then rise and leave with a volunteer adult (or two, depending on the number of children). The children are often taken to a nearby playground until Meeting for Worship is over. The caregiver has sometimes been a volunteer from the Meeting and sometimes a paid staff person.
New England Yearly Meeting Youth Programs
New England Yearly Meeting provides youth programs at New England Yearly Meeting Sessions in August, at youth retreats throughout the year for elementary, junior high and high school aged children, and in the summer at Friends Camp in Maine. Many young people have experienced a loving community in New England Yearly Meeting’s programs and have gone on to become active Young Friends and leaders in the Society. Further information is available at neym.org/organization/youth-programs.