It is my privilege to share my Breakout Sessions: “Tricky Messages for Kids” and “Effective Response Times in KidMin” at the AG KidMin Conference 2020.
Here are some of the resources mentioned during the break-outs:
“Tricky Messages for Kids”
Links to Additional Resources:
“Effective Response Times in KidMin”
Follow-up Pamphlets (AGKidMin):
It is my privilege to share my Breakout Session: “Effective Altar Calls in KidMin” at our Indiana District KidMin Conference.
Here are some of the resources mentioned during the break-out:
Follow-up Pamphlets (AGKidMin):
Have you ever wished you had that one new THING, believing it would improve your presentation?
Don’t fall for it! We all love new gadgets, props and things that can be used in a presentation, performance or ministry setting. Try these ideas first and let me know how it goes:
- Pray beforehand.
- Study so you’ll know what you’re talking about.
- Have a plan —When you don’t, they do.
- Meet the audiences’ level of intensity… and then, go beyond it.
- Be animated with your body movements: fill the space around you.
- Be animated with your voice: pace, volume, intensity, tone.
- Make eye-contact.
- Get kids to respond verbally: cheering, sound effects, call and response.
- Get kids to respond physically: standing, sitting, hand motions, moving around the room.
- Use kid-volunteers to help you: to hold props, become instant actors/actresses, to be interviewed.
- Use the names of the children present in the room while presenting.
- Use audio: background music, sound effects, popular song segments.
- Use lighting: adjust the brightness and color.
- Demonstrate a talent, ability or skill that fits the presentation.
- Prearrange for guests (kids, teens and adults) with special talents to be part of the presentation.
- Teach like Jesus (like one who has authority).
What other tips would you add?
Children in our churches are becoming increasingly unlearned as far as the Bible is concerned.
I hear many KidMin Leaders complain about the problem — mainly because there is no starting point. I have taken that as a personal mission to do whatever I can to become part of the solution. Here are a few of my ideas. Adopt any or all at your discretion:
- Encourage kids to bring a Bible with them to church – offer points for attendance and when they bring their Bibles with them.
- Take time to look up key verses, passages and stories during large group and small group times.
- If necessary, instruct the children in HOW to find verses, passages and stories in their own Bibles.
- Have good old Sword Drills — trust me: children still love the challenge!
- Carry a Bible with you when you teach and preach. Open it, motion to it, make it a symbol of significance.
- Have several sources for parents who want to get their child their own Bible.
- Take a year and teach the significant stories through the Bible — example: we taught on the Old Testament for September, October & November; December we taught all about the Christmas story; January, February, we are learning about the miracles of Jesus; March is all about some popular parables of Jesus; April will be the Easter story and May will focus on the early church.
- Do a series on the importance of God’s Word, how we got the Bible and all the amazing facts about it.
- Give parents a reading plan they can follow with their children.
- Have a memory verse challenge where there are incentives for memorizing scripture.
- Play memory verse games during your classes and services – share those ideas with parents so they can play the games at home.
- Use music and songs for your worship time that are based on scripture.
What would you add?
Comment below and let us know how you engage kids in the greatest resource available to them.
I still love Kids Church – in the last episode, we discussed the stuff that makes a kids church work. This episode is Part 2 of all about Kids Church! I discuss the structures that I’ve used to make my Kids Church work over the years.
Did you know that the modern Kids Church is a mash-up of:
education, entertainment and inspiration?
Let me know what you think and please, don’t forget to rate and review this episode and others, on iTunes!
If you’re like me (and I know I am), you put a lot of emphasis on teaching kids the Word of God every week – and in some cases, several times or venues a week.
I was on staff at a church and had 4 Kids’ Church large groups on a weekend. Add to that a Sunday School hour, Wednesday night large groups (of which I’m involved) and Wednesday night small groups. We also have a myriad of classes and services for toddlers and preschoolers and even some teaching time for infants that our wonderful staff on directors and volunteers oversee and participate in.
THERE’S A WHOLE LOT OF TEACHING GOING ON!
Let me encourage you this week as you plan for the upcoming Wednesday or Weekend and give you a pointer that I just know will give you the confidence and in some cases the “know-how”… and if there’s anything I’ve learned in the last few years: INFORMATION is POWERFUL when you APPLY IT.
Start preparing early in the week for the upcoming lesson or class time. In other words, if your ministry time was over the weekend, crack open that lesson book or materials on Monday… if your ministry time was on Wednesday; then make Thursday your day to start studying. You don’t have to plan your entire lesson on that day, but at least:
- Read over the lesson
- Know and memorize the key verse
- Look up and read any supporting verses
- And know the main point of the lesson.
Why should you do this? I’m glad you asked!
…When you start early in the week, it gives the Holy Spirit time to be your helper… instead of (gulp) having to work in spite of you. Think about it: all week long as you pray over the materials you’ve read, the Lord will reveal unique teaching ideas, stories you’ve heard or events in your life that you could work into your lesson. As the day of ministry gets closer and you are planning what that class time should look like, instead of saying, “Lord, what am I going to teach?” …you’ll be able to say “Lord, how do I fit all of these ideas into the lesson?”
Try it – I promise it will work. And as always, if you ever need a teaching idea, I’m just an e-mail away and I’m happy to brainstorm with you! I’d better let you go – some of you need to start studying!
I’ve taught a lot over the years on the structure of a children’s church.
I believe in it! It’s a place where kids are gathered corporately and worship, learn and fellowship. Those of you who have a Large Group/Small Group format can still benefit from this information as well as those who have a major emphasis on a children’s worship service – AKA: Children’s Church.
One day, while studying to teach on this topic once again at a conference, I realized that the children’s church service was a hybrid of several models. The Children’s Church has mix of the following elements:
Here are the three models:
The Education Class Model –
This model has been used for years and is like a mantra to classic and succesful educators:
- Tell them what are going to teach them – this is the icebreaker/opener that introduces kids to the lesson.
- Teach it to them – teach them using all the fun methods that you use.
- Tell them what you just taught them – review games and follow-up moments at the end of service (take-home papers or bulletins could also fit this heading).
The vaudeville Show Model –
I came across this a few years back after watching Duane Laflin speak about the psychological needs of an audience:
- Excitement – something that gets the show/service off to a fun and exciting start
- Introduction – welcoming the audience and helping them to feel comfortable with being there
- Identification – showing in an exciting way why you are all together or, preview your lesson
- Involvement – get the audience engaged… Invite people to participate – both corporately as well as individuals… Every kid wants to help
- Solid Content – This was the feature act – teach the “meat” of the lesson
- Confirmation – give the audience a chance to respond and let them leave feeling positive about what they just experienced – like an altar call, and a review. The kids should leave with a sense that they can put what you just taught them into practice.
The Intensity Model of a Children’s Ministry Setting –
I’ve used this for years to help structure how a childrne’s church should look:
- Kids are excited, rowdy and silly at the beginning of a class – match that with some controlled chaos… Fun games, exciting songs, silly or funny characters.
- About half way to two-thirds thru the class time is when the kids are at their most attentive – teach the most important things during this window… The main sermon, prayer time, worship times.
- As the class comes to a close, the kids will start to get rowdy again, so end with excitement elements… Review games, songs that relate to the topic, funny characters who need help from the kids in reviewing the lesson.
I hope you can see how each of these models kind of “morphs” together to create a good structure for a children’s church setting.
It Starts When They Walk In…
For this portion of the series, I want to focus on getting the Children’s Church experience started…
…Before you can start the 5 minute countdown, make a grandiose announcement, send in a crazy character, start your Bible on fire, or eat donuts suspended from a rope, we need some kids to come thru the doors. If the kids don’t show up, you’d be starting your Bible on fire for, well… nobody.
But what can you do to keep kids from getting bored from the moment they come into your ministry area?
Engage Them… Here Are a Few Suggestions:
- Decor- Have your ministry room(s) decorated to reflect the theme of your ministry or the topic that you are teaching. Whether you have the ability, permission and money to deck-out an area for kids or you have to set it up and tear it down; kids know when they are being welcomed and if you’ve prepared for them. Banners, backdrops, balloons, props/scenery and murals will create an environment that kids will remember.
- Ambiance- Music that is upbeat and fun or anticipatory will help kids feel like this is the place just for them. Light up the room(s) with different colors to help accent and compliment the look of the room. Video clips that are familiar or interesting to kids will make a welcoming experience. AND FOR GOODNESS SAKE – clean up the clutter, vacuum, adjust the temp and eliminate odor!
- Activities- When kids enter any new environment, their internal intensity changes. Kids need an outlet for energy. So have some energy-outlet friendly stuff ready. Board games, twister, an art station, simple “carnival”-type games, long-jump contests, high-jump contests, follow the leader, quiz games, treasure/scavenger hunts, video games… Use your imagination. I mean, look at it as if “nothing kid-friendly is off-limits”.
- Relational Interaction- Having the leaders in your areas who are initiating interaction will create a memory and set the temperature for an experience. What do the leaders do? Ask kid-related questions; about their clothes, school, shoes, movies, video games, toys, pets, vacation, friends, etc. Having some conversation starters are important. Read my post about “The Stuff I’ve Kept in my Pockets” These little items will help leaders start conversations and create experiences.
Have I given you something to think about? BTW: You can buy a Bible that starts on fire here… I use mine all the time!