Last year I did something CRAZY!!! I started a Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Level 1 at our homeschool co-op just a few short months BEFORE co-op started. I started “planning” in the spring, found a guide, got permission from the co-op director and pastor. However, the guide wanted to get more formal permission from the pastor and this meeting didn’t take place until late June, maybe not even until July. Once the formal approval happened and we had taken one of our priests on a tour of a local Atrium at the full time Montessori school, St. Francis Montessori, we got to work on gathering/making all of the materials.
This task was not as easy as I had thought it would be. I just assumed there would be some sort of neatly compiled list I could reference and check off things as I got them. I started looking through the materials links on The National Association of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd website. To my surprise there wasn’t a PDF list I could download, only link after link that opened window after window, which lead to a rabbit hole of confusion for me.
So being true to my personality I got to work creating a spreadsheet that myself, the guide and our volunteers could reference to more easily gather materials. While this did take lots of work and many nights sitting at my computer with, what seemed like, hundreds of windows open on my internet browser, it probably saved us many more hours than it took me to make it in gathering our materials. Remember we only had about 6 weeks to get the Atrium set up!!!!
Of course, I can’t keep this gem of a spread sheet to myself so I am sharing it here in hopes that anyone starting up a Level 1 Atrium will find it super useful in gathering all of their materials. I hope this will encourage the start of more Atriums across the country as I am sure some just don’t get started as the task of gathering materials can seem overwhelming.
I have uploaded a Numbers and an Excel version. I’m a Mac girl so I can’t guarantee the exported Excel version will be the exact format I created, but hopefully it’ll just be missing some fonts and apparently my checkboxes weren’t supported.
I tried to put in as many links to where we acquired our materials for you so that you can more quickly get all you need. We are currently preparing to start Level 2 for next school year. I have not created the spreadsheet for this level, but as soon as I am done I will be sure to share it in another post.
May God bless you for your work in bringing the beautiful teachings to these children in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. You won’t know just how much your work has helped to build up the Kingdom of God while here on earth, but I believe, God willing, we make it to heaven, we will see some beautiful shining souls that are so bright because of the early spiritual formation they received in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.