Faith Quest: Deepening Your Knowledge and Faith in the Person of Jesus Christ

Book cover: 'Faith Quest: Deepening Your Knowledge and Faith in the Person of Jesus Christ'
Michelle Willis, M.Ed.
Ocean East
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FaithQuest: Deepening Your Knowledge and Faith in the Person of Jesus Christ is a religious education resource for students in grades 7 to 12. It is a multimedia package which includes a Facilitator Resource Guide and two CD-ROMs.

The course is divided into three modules. The first one aims to increase knowledge about the life and character of Jesus Christ, the second one focuses on the Lord's Prayer and getting to know God as Father, the third one focuses on Jesus's teachings in the Sermon on the Mount and how to live as Christians in the world. Each module has three or four lessons, for a total of 10 lessons. There is also a supplementary CD-ROM on the Ten Commandments.

The structure of the course is much like Faith Quest: The Basics. The curriculum is based on the CD-ROM which comes along with the Facilitator's Guide. You open the program and pick the lesson you are working on from the main menu. You can begin from the middle of a lesson if you left off without finishing. The first section of each lesson is on Vocabulary; the second section requires that you read the Youth Update, and the third section is a comprehension check to reinforce and review the information given in the Youth Update. For the first and third steps, there is a writing element as you write down the vocabulary or q&a on the reproducible sheets provided in the Guide.

When you have completed these steps, you can take the lesson Quiz. The quiz has true or false questions, a vocabulary bank, and multiple choice style questions. When a Module is completed, there is a paper crossword puzzle to review vocabulary, then a practice test on the computer, and then a Unit Test on paper.

The Facilitator's Guide contains instructions for how to install and use the software, a glossary of all the vocabulary words used in the curriculum, reproducible worksheets and quizzes, an answer key and "Youth Update" articles for each section of the course. The content of the course is based on these Youth Updates, which are nicely done several-color reprints of articles from St Anthony Messenger Press and have an Imprimatur. If you are using the program with more than one student, you need to get additional copies of these articles, and the address for ordering is in the Guide.

Both the paper material and the computer material are very nicely laid out, attractive without being flashy or distracting. The Youth Updates tie contemporary youth concerns and topics in with truths of our faith. The structure of the computer and paper parts of the course is designed to let the student work at his own pace and to provide plenty of review and practice. Since every lesson and module have an identical structure, once the student understands the method there are no surprises. He is free to work on mastering the actual content.

There is a supplementary Ten Commandments CD-ROM which covers the commandments and the vocabulary associated with them.

A complete religious education program needs to include some time for students to interact with real people, in discussion and involvement in the community and the church. This program in itself doesn't provide that. What it does provide is something that is often lacking in religious education nowadays: mastery of essential doctrine. This resource would work well as one component of a religious education class that had the technology: computer stations with WIN95 or higher and headphones. It takes most of the guesswork and dullness out of ensuring that every student knows basic terminology and concepts. Each student can work at his own pace, and each student must master the vocabulary and concepts before proceeding.

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