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Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

Posts for Teacher Enrichment

Looking for the Nones

March 21, 2018

Dialoguing Principles

January 06, 2017

Small group and full classroom discussions encourage sharing among your students. Though each lesson and activity uses slightly different dialogue techniques, some general methodological principles apply to all of them. The following principles, adapted from the work of Sr. Kieran Saywer, SSND.

How Do Your Students Learn?

May 23, 2016

This interesting cartoon provides some food-for-thought on assessing the way students learn.

New Book for Catholic High School Theology Teachers

March 01, 2016

Room 24: Adventures of a New Evangelist chronicles the story of a freshman theology teacher at a Catholic high school in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Brimming with good humor and constant hope, the book demonstrates the practical side of evangelization, with all its ups and downs, joys and frustrations.

How Catholic Schools Can Address the Sinful Nature of Bullying

October 12, 2015

Over the last few decades, there has fortunately arisen a greater awareness of the scourge of bullying within school settings throughout the United States. To be clear, the awareness is the fortunate aspect, while the prevalence is the obviously deleterious one.

Various Retreat Models for Catholic High Schools

June 23, 2015

As you probably know from your own personal retreat experiences, there are many different ways to “retreat” with teens who are participating in a Confirmation, youth ministry, or campus ministry retreat. However, depending on the group and circumstances, some models definitely work better than others do. This article provides a brief overview of the pros and cons of the various retreat models.

Rest, Renewal, and Revitalization for the Catholic School Educator

June 01, 2015

During the upcoming break in the academic year, plan to use part of the time to refresh yourself in the life-giving words and teachings of Christ!

Four Ways for Your Students to Survive and Thrive in Lent

February 25, 2015

The academic third quarter, for both students and teachers alike, tends to have the notorious distinction of being one of the most challenging, both mentally and academically, of the four quarters of the school year. With half of the school year behind us, both mental energy and physical energy can be at a minimum. It is an interesting situation that, in Catholic high schools, the mental trial that comprises the third academic quarter and the spiritual desert that comprises the Lenten season have some semblance of overlap.

Getting to Know New Students & New Names

August 11, 2014

Remembering and using someone's name is a simple gesture that goes a long way. How, then, can we learn students names quickly and correctly?

A Simple Approach to Teaching Religion

May 29, 2013

What is the single most important thing for my students to learn?

We often overlook this important question. Our textbooks have so much information. The curriculum is very demanding. The days, weeks, and months we have to do actual instruction in class seem to be getting shorter and shorter as time goes on often interrupted by assemblies, sports, and other school events.

How Do Students Best Learn?

September 18, 2012


September 19, 2011

Lesson Be-Attitudes

July 25, 2011

E-textbook and Laptop Teaching Strategies Webinar Recording

November 05, 2010

We are happy to provide you with both a video recording of the E-textbook Teaching Strategies Webinar as well as a downloadable version of the slide show presentation.

Teaching Theology Using Literature and Art Webinar

October 21, 2010

On Tuesday, Br. Michel Bettigole, editor of the book The Catholic Spirit: An Anthology for Discovering Faith Through Literature, Art, Film, and Music, presented a sample lesson on the Eucharist drawing from classic works of art and literature.

The Catholic Spirit Webinar

October 13, 2010

On October 19, 2010 Ave Maria Press will be sponsoring a Webinar titled "The Catholic Spirit: Integrating Literature and Art into Religious Education" featuring authors Br. Michel Bettigole, O.S.F. and J. D. Childs.

Catholic Schools Week 2010: Celebrating Innovative Leadership

February 01, 2010

The Church celebrates the lives of two founders of religious communities who have been dedicated to educating boys and girls in Catholic high schools that flourish to this day.

Old Testament Themes

September 25, 2009

Dr. Daniel Smith-Christopher, the keynote speaker at the fifth annual Teacher Enrichment Day on October 10 at the University of Notre Dame, offers advice on reading the Old Testament.

Catechesis with Persons with Special Needs

June 18, 2009

Soeren Palumbo, now a junior at the University of Notre Dame, delivered a powerful testimony of love for his sister, Olivia, speaking out against the use of "retard" as a word that both teens and adults use disrespectfully toward people with disabilities.

Rules for Drills and Games in Religion Class

April 06, 2009

Sr. Kieran Sawyer SSND offers five principles to guide the use of drills and games in the classroom.

Teacher Enrichment Day 09: Save the Date!

February 02, 2009

Ave Maria Press is sponsoring its fifth annual Enrichment Day for High School Religion Teachers.

Catholic Social Teaching and Monopoly

January 29, 2009

The attendees of Ave Maria Press's Teacher Enrichment Day share some favorite lesson plans.

Warm Up Lesson: Threeees!

December 11, 2008

A lesson plan from the exchange that took place at the Fourth Annual Teacher Enrichment Day.

The "Both/And" Approach to Catechesis

November 10, 2008

A main focus of Dr. Thomas Groome's presentation at the National Symposium on Adolescent Catechesis was the need for a both/and approach to catechesis.

FREE Teacher Enrichment Day at Notre Dame

September 24, 2008

"Teaching with the Brain in Mind"

Teaching With the Brain in Mind

July 22, 2008

On October 11, Ave Maria Press is offering its annual Teacher Enrichment Day at Notre Dame.

More Catholic Summer Reading

July 08, 2008

The website catholicsummer promotes reading for Catholics of all ages.

Link to Excellent Teacher Website

June 17, 2008

I've designed a theology site called (independent of Ave Maria Press) that I'd like to make available to anyone who teaches the faith and visits the Ave Maria Press web site.

Positive Results for Catholic Education

June 04, 2008

A study tracking and comparing high school students who reveived special financial aid to attend Catholic high schools in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles netted overwhelming and positive results.

A Discussion About Textbooks

May 16, 2008

How are textbooks utilized as part of a high school theology course?

The Pope's Message to Catholic Educators

April 21, 2008

Pope Benedict XVI addressed Catholic educators on Thursday, April 17, at Catholic University in Washington D.C.

Check Out Our Latest Newsletter!

March 24, 2008

The latest issue of the Engaging Minds, Hearts, and Hands newsletter is now on line

Why Do They Call it Good Friday?

March 19, 2008

This day that is outwardly dark and dismal actually commemorates Christ's greatest gift to us.

Teacher Luncheon at L.A. Religious Ed Congress!

March 07, 2008

For the second year in a row, Ave Maria Press sponsored an appreciation luncheon for Catholic high school religion teachers attending the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress in Anaheim.

Teacher Enrichment Day: Save the Date!

February 06, 2008

Ave Maria Press is sponsoring its fourth annual Enrichment Day for High School Religion Teachers.

Catholic Schools Light the Way

January 31, 2008

Pause and read the story of one Catholic High School Student from Cretin-Derham Hall High School in Minneapolis.

The New Year: The Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God

December 28, 2007

In accepting what God wanted of her, Mary received the most esteemed title any human being could hope to attain: Mother of God.

The Challenges of Teaching Theology

November 27, 2007

Some reader responses on the greatest challenges that Catholic theology teachers face.

You Are Invited to a Day of Enrichment!

September 26, 2007

For High School Theology Teachers at Notre Dame: “Educating Minds, Hearts, and Hands” Saturday, Oct. 6th 8:30-4:00 pm, University of Notre Dame. FREE ADMISSION!

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