Every child is on a spiritual journey, and the children’s ministry leader has a unique responsibility to influence, guide, and support that journey in developmentally-appropriate ways. This course integrates developmental psychology, attachment theory, play therapy theory, and insights from neuroscience with practical applications. Through this course, you will be equipped to lead a developmentally sound, emotionally connected, and spiritually vibrant children’s ministry!
The course will cover classic theories of developmental psychology, with emphasis on how these link to spirituality. Newer theories of interpersonal neurobiology and its impact on emotional development, along with attachment theory, will be incorporated into learning. Church leaders will learn how to foster vibrant, warm, engaged, and secure relationships within families and within the church; how children learn and grow spiritually through play; and psychological, emotional, and relational benefits of spirituality & faith.
This is a general course and is applicable to work with all kinds of children, with attention given to children with ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, PTSD, intellectual disability or developmental delay. Theories are presented with plenty of real-life examples and applications. There will be lots of discussion, through both forums and video chats.
Students are required to have the following books for this class:
- Children’s Spirituality by Rebecca Nye
- Joining Children on the Spiritual Journey by Catherine Stonehouse
- The Yes Brain, by Daniel Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson
This course is eligible for 3.0 CEU.
About the Instructor
Angela Goodson is a consecrated deaconess with the Lutheran Diaconal Association and currently works as a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT) and licensed master’s addictions counselor (LMAC) in rural Winfield, Kansas. She holds a master’s of science degree in marriage and family therapy from Friends University in Wichita, Kansas, and a master’s of art degree in history from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
In addition to her work with clients, she teaches history and psychology courses at Southwestern College in Winfield. She values her spiritual life and believes that her work as a therapist and as an instructor is an outflowing of her call to serve and equip others to live lives of integrity and purpose.
In any free time she has, Angela enjoys working in her garden, going for walks, and doing yoga. Her guilty pleasure is reading, watching, or listening to true crime stories. She works and lives in Winfield, Kansas, with her husband and two daughters. The family recently adopted a rescue dog named Wrigley, who is a good, good girl. Sometimes.