ID – an 11-week life skills course
Suzi Stock, Kevin Mayhew 2004

£5.99 (Approx)
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What does it say on the tin?

‘Three big issues burn through teenage life: self-belief, family and me, sex and relationships. Within those issues, various sub-plots intertwine to further complicate matters. This book from Suzi Stock is a life skills course for young people that will fire them with enthusiasm for the challenge.

It runs for 11 weeks and is divided into three sections based on those three key issues of self-belief, family and relationships. There is a Christian perspective, but the sessions are suitable for all, whether they have been to church every Sunday since they were born or have only been to church for weddings and funerals.

Suzi’s experience of working with young people shines through, and each session is a well-blended mix of activities, illustrations, media and small-group discussion.
If you’re the kind of youth worker who prefers to write your own material because nothing else quite fits into what you want – this could be the book to make you think again!’

What do you get and how?

The resource is an A4 size book containing 69 pages. The book contains 11 sessions, split into 3 themes: self-belief, family and me, sex and relationships.

It is available direct from Kevin Mayhew.

Who is it for?

Although the blurb says it is for all young people, it is probably best for teenagers and those who have little or no understanding of faith. Committed Christians may find the content to be a bit thin in terms of biblical content. The topics are important and relevant to young people, and help non-churched young people see how God gives them self-esteem and value. The author suggests in the introduction that each session is designed to last an hour and a half, but some sessions seem to be lacking in sufficient material to last this long unless you have a particularly chatty group of young people.




  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    The material is clearly laid out although sometimes the author leaves the course leader to write their own content, especially on any teaching sections.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    There is no introduction to any of the sessions and you only can work out the aims from the session titles and by reading through the session outlines.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    The notes are clearly laid out and are easy to follow. They explain clearly how each activity or element works and what the leader needs to do.

    Who could lead it?

    This would need to be led by people who are experienced at working with young people as there is a fair amount of work to be done in regard to the biblical teaching elements. The session on sex is particularly lacking in guidance and expects the leader to know how best to teach this to their group.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    There are photocopiable handouts for many of the sessions which are clear and easy to use.

    How good is any digital material?

    Each session includes at least one film or TV clip to show, which the leader will need to source. The clips are quite long for a youth group (over 5 minutes each) so best suit young people who are happy sitting still for a while.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    The resource contains some useful activities and ways to respond to the session's topic. These activities will need to be prepared, mainly by collating the equipment. Each session starts with a list of all you need to run the session, which is a helpful checklist. The leader will need to find the film clip for each session as well as writing the teaching section of the session.

    Is there website support? Links?


    Is it dated?


  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    The course is designed to be done together and each session has a small group discussion section, where the group divides into smaller groups to share their own reactions to the subject and encourages them to be honest and open with one another. The exception is the session on being a child of God, where there is an excellent leader-led mediation, enabling the participants to reflect on what it means to be a child of God.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    The sessions are largely built around a film clip or activity to introduce the topic then a discussion-led time to explore the issue more deeply.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    It is designed to be used ‘as is' and is a useful course to introduce these important issues. It should work well if your group like the style of delivery.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    This is encouraged from session 1 and expects participants to explore the issues together.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    Each session uses Scripture to help the participants think through the issue from a biblical perspective. Some sessions only use one verse from the Bible, whereas others use a passage or a selection on verses from different books of the Bible.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    The material is relevant and easy for the young people to access. The author makes it clear how the material affects the topic and helps the participants to see the relevance of God's teaching for them today.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    This is done well and helps the participants see how God can impact every area of their lives.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?


  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    The material is designed to be used as part of an ongoing youth group programme and encourages individuals to continue to explore the difference God makes to their lives.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    See above

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    This really depends on the individual's starting position. For non-churched young people, the course could help them see how God wants to be involved in every area of their life. Christian young people may find they understand most of the material already and could do with a bit more biblical depth to stretch their faith.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    This is done well and is relevant to each of the 11 issues. (What it means to feel good about myself, how do I feel about myself, moving on from my negative view of myself, who am I, happy families, communication is the key, playing your part, children of God, fire should stay in the fireplace, peer pressure, kiss and make up)

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    This is not explored in this course.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    It has four sessions on being more involved in their family unit.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    This is not explored.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    This is not explored.

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