A typical Middle School Friends gathering consists of anywhere between 15 and 35 middle schoolers and 6-10 adults (staff and volunteers). Our program is a mix of play, discussion, spiritual education, arts/music, and community-building activities.
Middle School Friends gatherings vary widely in theme and focus, but they all have several things in common:
- Every MSF gathering gives participants the opportunity to explore Quakerism and spirituality.
- Every MSF gathering offers a safe space for middle schoolers to be authentic and open.
- Every MSF gathering has a mix of high energy running around, low energy winding down/sleepy time, wild wacky fun and thoughtful exploration of new ideas.
- Every MSF gathering has a mix of big and small group activities.
- Every MSF gathering includes workshops, games, worship, and community building.
Below is a sample gathering schedule. The bold items are concepts or activities that appear at every or almost every Middle School Friends gathering throughout the year, although the order may change.
|7:00 Breakfast prep small group gets up||7:00 Breakfast crew gets up and packs|
|7:30 Everyone else gets up; crew reports to the kitchen||7:30 Everyone else gets up and packs, gets stuff ready to go|
|8:00 Breakfast||8:00 Breakfast|
|8:30 Breakfast clean up||8:30 Breakfast clean-up|
|9:00 Small group session: worship sharing||9:45 Meeting for worship with a concern for business|
|10:00 large group workshop/game/activity/ project||10:30 Stomp circle (appreciating one another)|
|11:30 Lunch prep||11:00 Worship with our host meeting|
|Noon Lunch||12:00 The end, get picked up, leftovers are up for grabs!|
|12:30 clean up/ free time|
|1:15 Large or small group workshop/game/activity/project|
|3:15 Often multiple workshops at the same time, with MSFers choosing the one that best fits for them|
|4:30 Activities by grade level|
|5:30 Dinner set up|
|6-7 Everyone arrives, welcome!||6:30 Dinner clean-up|
|7:30 Program begins, intro games, discussion of guidelines/rules||7:30 Evening event: Dance/talent show/ ice skating/graduation depending on the event|
|8:30 Small group introductions, game worship sharing||9:00 small group session|
|9:30 Snack and clean up||9:30 Snack|
|10:00 Bedtime and staff meeting||10:00 Prepare for bed: story time/singing/guided meditation|
|10:30 Lights out||10:30 Lights out|