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Northern Virginia Ethical Society (NoVES)

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Our Ethical Education Curriculum

Classes are offered on a rotating basis. Not all classes are available every year. Our Sunday School community helps us decide what classes to offer each year, so please reach out to if you would like to participate (or teach!) a specific class. 

Preschool Ages 3-5

Explore hope, respect, honesty, justice, courage, love and loyalty. This class teaches qualities of Ethical behavior through guided play, stories and activities.

Every Day is Earth Day
Grades K-4

Every day is a day to think about taking care of our Earth.  Learn about conserving energy, recycling and using less, and the frailty of ecosystems.  Discover how all creatures serve a purpose on Earth.

Special Places
Grades 1-4 

A beloved hands on curriculum that explores basic needs, comfort, homes, and community. The class is told through stories and hands-on activities about homes.

Holidays & Holy Days
Grades K-4

A respectful introduction to religions and cultures of the world through celebration of a different holiday every week.

What Would You Do?
Grades 3-5

Ethical dilemmas are presented to the students in the form of a story.  They are then led through a discussion or activity to teach them how to stay true to their ethical values when deciding....What Would You Do if it Were You?

Spaceship Earth
Grades 4-6 

An experiential program to foster skills for Earth stewardship. This class focuses on ethical dilemmas and problem solving where sometimes there is no 'best' answer.

Comparative Religion
Grades 5-7 

A respectful study of major world religions, comparing them to each other and Ethical Culture.  Field trips to different houses of worship are frequent in this class.

Media Literacy/Ethical Dilemmas
Grades 5-8 

Our pre-teens are exposed to all kinds of messages coming from media outlets, advertisers and peers. This class helps them become more able to analyze the veracity of those messages, as well as the intentions of the creators of the messages.  It also gives them a chance to discuss and role play how they would ethically handle a difficult situation involving peer pressure and social media.

Our Whole Lives (OWL) 
Sexual education/health curriculum
Grade 8

Our Whole Lives helps participants make informed and responsible decisions about their sexual health and behavior. It equips participants with accurate, age-appropriate information in six subject areas: human development, relationships, personal skills, sexual behavior, sexual health and society and culture. Grounded in a holistic view of sexuality, Our Whole Lives not only provides facts about anatomy and human development, it also helps participants clarify their values, build interpersonal skills and understand the spiritual, emotional and social aspects of sexuality.

Mentor Program

Grades 9+

Each teen teams up with an adult mentor to spend two years exploring common interests and gaining an understanding about what it means to be an individual who is becoming an adult.  

Youth of Ethical Societies (YES)
Teen Years

Teens are provided opportunities to get together with adult sponsors for activities in a variety of locations.  The YES group is invited to attend the national youth conference sponsored by the American Ethical Union (AEU).  If you are interested in participating in YES, please contact Kristen at

Future of Ethical Society (FES) 

Post secondary years

The AEU sponsors FES which is available to students beyond high school level.  (Not currently offered at NoVES)

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