• The Educational Center
    • WE TELL STORIES . . . AS HUMAN BEINGS, SPIRITUAL BEINGS, MEANING-MAKING BEINGS . . . WE TELL STORIES.

      Where do these stories come from? From the biblical narratives, of course. But also from books, videos, films, newspapers, magazines, YouTube, Twitter, sacred literature, short stories, plays, poetry, and talk across backyards, or in the grocery checkout lane. Stories occur in any medium that includes the issues or polarities alive in the classrooms of our lives. They have the power to reach down inside and crack open the tight places. Stories are the way, in, down, around, that let us see the patterns that are in all people.

      The Educational Center understands this. Our method of education recognizes that stories reflect our lives and awaken universal patterns that enliven and inform our choices. Whether they are historical or mythical, biblical or personal, fictional or biographical, stories invite the imagination and the symbolic.

      Issue-centered Maieutic Education is what we call it. It is a pedagogy that honors the inner pull between opposing needs or values. For example: “I want to let go and yet, at the same time, I want to hold on.” This simple statement captures a universal dynamic, one that all people will experience in their lives. Issue-centered education offers structure that embraces a “both/and” perspective rather than reducing the value and complexity of each alternative to an “either/or” posture. It leads one to the awareness of responsibility and possibility

      The bridge between the individual’s experience and the wisdom of stories is built with questions. In the teaching tradition of Socrates and Jesus, our goal is to assist the birth of knowing, to provide context and support, and pose questions that lead to ever-deepening explorations.

      Can you live with the questions? Can you hold aloft two (or more) realities at once? Do you appreciate the paradox and humor of being a seeker? If you’re okay with the deep knowing of not knowing the answers, our resources and method will excite you, support you on your journey, and reassure you that you’re not the only one out there scratching your head! We do not publish answers. We ask questions. Why? Again, because we are all storytellers and we all have a story to tell.

Lent 6-Week Study – Year C (E-Delivery)

This 6 week study includes Lent 1 – Palm/Passion Sunday and follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEAR A, B or C) text selections.

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Lent 6-Week Study – Year B (E-Delivery)

This 6 week study includes Lent 1 – Palm/Passion Sunday and follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEAR A, B or C) text selections.

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Lent 6-Week Study – Year A (E-Delivery)

This 6 week study includes Lent 1 – Palm/Passion Sunday and follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEAR A, B or C) text selections.

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TeenText – Teen Curriculum, Middle School (Electronic)

TeenText is different! Instead of providing youth with answers that “come from the Bible,” these resources meet the students where they are – grappling eagerly and passionately with growing up, becoming who they are. In this educational setting the student is the curriculum, not the written study guide.

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TeenText – Teen Curriculum, High School (Electronic)

The lectionary-based TEENTEXT HIGH SCHOOL resource helps older youth connect the text on the page with events in their daily lives. These resources guide students into the text, and through a series of open-ended, text-related questions, they begin to see the Bible as a vital, dynamic relevant resource–one that can inform them throughout their lives. These resources enable any interested and committed adult to facilitate the discussions, since the leaders aren’t expected to have THE answer, or to be Biblical scholars or theologians. They simply need to be good listeners and open to their own spiritual growth. This process also allows the students to share leadership.

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TeenText Genesis 4-Week Study

4 week youth study of Book of Genesis

Utilizing the TeenText method this four-week resource explores the Book of Genesis through open ended questions and activities.

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TeenText Middle School Luke Study: Charlie Brown Christmas

This four week ADVENT curriculum breaks the TeenText mold just slightly. We’ve moved away from the lectionary selections that are a part of our regular curriculum to focus on the birth narrative from Luke’s gospel.

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TeenText High School Luke Study: Charlie Brown Christmas

This four week ADVENT curriculum breaks the TeenText mold just slightly. We’ve moved away from the lectionary selections that are a part of our regular curriculum to focus on the birth narrative from Luke’s gospel.

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TeenText Middle School Advent Year C – 4 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

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TeenText Middle School Advent Year B – 4 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

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TeenText Middle School Advent Year A – 5 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

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TeenText High School Advent Year C – 4 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

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TeenText High School Advent Year B – 4 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

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TeenText High School Advent Year A – 5 Weeks

4 and 5 week Advent Studies (Years A, B, C of the Revised Common Lectionary)

The Advent season is rich in sensory exploration. Our ADVENT issues follows the Revised Common Lectionary (YEARS A, B, C) and provides youth the opportunity to explore this season through thoughtful selections of art, music and video.

read more

Awakening the Fire Within

A Primer on Issue-Centered Education including sample lesson plans and supplemental materials

Written by RBTL Founding Editor Bill Dols, this primer explains the Maueitic (midwife) Method of The Educational Center and provides a learning experience that explores “the student is the curriculum.”

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On the Authentic Life

A 5 part film study on transformation

This wonderfully rich resource contains five film lesson plans (video not included), each with links to alternate resources, movie reviews, background information and instructions on how to use this resource.

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Reading Between The Lines of the European Reformation (PDF Version)

Session short course of 500 years of social justice, reformation and Martin Luther

500 Years of Reform: A fervor for reformation had been stirring with ebbs and flows for centuries and would see the crumbling of the structures of the Medieval Church.

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Reading Between The Lines of the European Reformation (Print Version)

Session short course of 500 years of social justice, reformation and Martin Luther

Reading Between The Lines (RBTL) of the European Reformation is an opportunity to examine some of the original documents of key leaders of the movement and to explore the events that propelled this period of dramatic realignment.

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The Characters of Christmas

5 Part Advent/Christmas Study Series

When was the last time you followed a star? Talked to an angel? Took an outrageous chance? Ran for your life? Mary, Joseph, the Shepherds and Magi did! Might their stories be inviting you to take a chance on transformation?

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Advent 4 Week Study Year C (E-Delivery)

This special 4-week Advent Study offers an exploration of the season using rich visual art and music. Many congregations choose to mark these Sundays with the lighting of candles in the Advent wreath, balancing the dark days of winter with the promise of a coming spring.

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Advent 4 Week Study Year B (E-Delivery)

This special 4-week Advent Study offers an exploration of the season using rich visual art and music. Many congregations choose to mark these Sundays with the lighting of candles in the Advent wreath, balancing the dark days of winter with the promise of a coming spring.

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Advent 4 Week Study Year A (E-Delivery)

This special 4-week Advent Study offers an exploration of the season using rich visual art and music. Many congregations choose to mark these Sundays with the lighting of candles in the Advent wreath, balancing the dark days of winter with the promise of a coming spring.

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Reading Between The Lines, Adult Curriculum (Electronic and Hard Copy)

Reading Between The Lines is a lectionary based life-centered biblical resource designed for small group youth and adult education in church and home, for individual study or as an aid to preachers. One of the texts from the Revised Common Lectionary is chosen each Sunday. The exploration begins with encountering the story found in the biblical text. The focus then shifts to how this story is happening in the world around us. Finally the questions turn toward how the story is an event in the lives of the people in the group. The journey through the text seeks life-giving questions that wait to be lived.

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Reading Between The Lines, Adult Curriculum (Electronic)

BibleWorkbench is a lectionary based life-centered biblical resource designed for small group youth and adult education in church and home, for individual study or as an aid to preachers. One of the texts from the Revised Common Lectionary is chosen each Sunday. The exploration begins with encountering the story found in the biblical text. The focus then shifts to how this story is happening in the world around us. Finally the questions turn toward how the story is an event in the lives of the people in the group. The journey through the text seeks life-giving questions that wait to be lived.

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Reading Between The Lines, Adult Curriculum (Hard Copy)

Reading Between the Lines is a lectionary based life-centered biblical resource designed for small group youth and adult education in church and home, for individual study or as an aid to preachers. One of the texts from the Revised Common Lectionary is chosen each Sunday. The exploration begins with encountering the story found in the biblical text. The focus then shifts to how this story is happening in the world around us. Finally the questions turn toward how the story is an event in the lives of the people in the group. The journey through the text seeks life-giving questions that wait to be lived.

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