THE HUNTSVILLE RESPECT LIFE CURRICULUM -
PRE-KINDERGARTEN THROUGH TWELFTH GRADES
This curriculum arises from the need to further educate our children about the wrongs of abortion. Since abortion was legalized in the United States with the decision of Roe vs. Wade, there have been many messages put forth in the media and society claiming that abortion is not only acceptable, but that it is also a woman's right. As some of the authors of this curriculum were attending Catholic schools for our elementary and secondary education during the 1970's and 80's, this issue was never discussed or taught in any formalized way. In fact, we cannot recall ever having received any lectures on abortion during those years. Many people have had similar experiences, and today there continues to be a lack of any formal pro-life education in many (if not most) schools. Our concern is that our children are therefore not equipped to deal with the ever-present onslaught of pro-abortion rhetoric. Unless this changes, any hope of ending "legalized" abortion seems bleak.
"Abortion and euthanasia are crimes, which no human law can claim to legitimize. There is no obligation in conscience to obey such laws; instead there is a grave and clear obligation to oppose them by conscientious objection. In the case of an intrinsically unjust law, such as a law permitting abortion or euthanasia, it is therefore never licit to obey it, or to take part in a propaganda campaign in favor of such a law, or vote for it."
-Pope John Paul II (The Gospel of Life, No. 72).
Many groups lobby Congress to change the law. But in the last thirty years, this has been ineffective. In order to affect a change, we have to educate voters on the importance of this issue. When it comes to being pro-life or pro-abortion, the reality is that most adults have already made up their minds one way or the other. Any hope lies with educating future votersour children. Christian schools are currently graduating voters and future government leaders whose record of defending life is virtually no better than the national average. If future generations remain uneducated, then change cannot occur. Children are our greatest resource and hope for a society in which abortion and the culture of death is no longer tolerated.
We are proposing that a pro-life curriculum, such as the one presented here, be instituted in already existing religion classes. It could be taught elsewhere, but this seems like a natural fit for the course. Our goal is to teach that life begins at conception, that all life is important regardless of the stage of development, and that abortion is wrong and against God's teaching. To that end, we have designed approximately ten lessons for each grade from pre-kindergarten through twelfth. These lesson plans could be utilized as is, or each school could modify them as they see fit. Modifications might include adjusting material that does not seem appropriate for a particular class or age group. However, the lessons should always remain in accord with Christian doctrine.
This program is not sex education or simply a once a year lecture. Instead, it is a curriculum that can teach our children about the sanctity of life over the course of many lessons throughout their elementary and high school education. We hope to change hearts, minds, and eventually the law.
"Train up a child in the way he should go. Even when he is old he will not depart from it"
-The Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Proverbs 22:6
It is our hope that all Christian schools adopt this program and that a national pro-life education curriculum be taught to all Christians. This could counter the pro-abortion rhetoric with a consistent and persistent pro-life message from a Christian perspective. The information presented here originates from Christian principals and Church teachings, and references for the material include the Bible and Church writings. Other various sources have been utilized to convey this Christian, pro-life message (such as videos). It is the hard work and dedication of everyone involved that made this curriculum possible.
Note: The Huntsville Respect Life Curriculum used at St. Joseph Academy has been adjusted to fit the personal/sensitive needs of the child in a classroom setting. Certain sensitive topics have been substituted with more group setting appropriate topics, but maintaining the full pro-life message being given.
SJA is also pleased to announce the formation of a new club on campus:
Please follow the link for more information about the pro-life activities in which our high school students will be participating.