For a video experience, click above. Prefer reading? Continue below. Let me ask you a question: What do you think is the most important thing that happens in your KidMin on a Sunday morning?
Is it the worship time?
Is it the gospel-centered teaching?
Is it the study of God's Word?
I think a case could be made for any of these things. Without a doubt, they're all at the core of what we do in KidMin. But I believe there's something even more foundational that has to happen
For a video experience, click above. Prefer reading? Continue below. I recently met two KidMin leaders from the same church who were telling me about their struggles with finding quality volunteer teachers. In way of illustration, they told me about one teacher in particular—the one who had caused them the most hair loss. "He's a little bit awkward," the one leader told me. She talked about his struggle to stay on topic, his quirky mannerisms, and his perpetual unpreparedness
If you have ever played a sport, you've probably heard your coach say something to the effect of, "Push hard until the very end," or "Don't quit until the game is over."
Somehow University of Oregon runner, Tanguy Pepiot, missed the memo.
In the final meters of the men's steeplechase, Tanguy let off of the gas and began celebrating his win. There was only one problem. As Tanguy waved his arm in the air, urging the crowd to cheer on his victory, Washington's runner, Meron S
"Hey Lincoln! What did you learn at church today?"
That's the question I've asked my son hundreds of times during the car ride home. And almost every time I ask, without really even opening his mouth, he answers in the same way: with an "ah-o-uh" sound that vaguely resembles "I don't know."
I know that's not true. He's learning plenty of stuff at church. The problem, I've discovered, is not with the KidMin, it's with the question.
That question is just so.
On January 11th, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would be changing it's news feed algorithm so that you see more content from friends, family, and groups.
"As we roll this out," Zuck said, "You’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media.”
My first thought was, "Yay! More cute puppy posts from the people I care about!"
My second thought was, "Boo! My GO! Curriculum Facebook page is about to get a real kick in the pants!"
I use the
Sometimes we see people who lead and relate to kids with such effortless talent that we say of them, “They’re such a natural!” Make no mistake, though, great KidMin leaders aren’t born—they’re made! If you watch the most successful KidMin leaders closely, you’ll see that many of them have a method to their madness. And best of all, it’s something that anyone can learn. Follow these 4 “Be’s” to be the “bees knees” to the kids in your ministry.
Be relational. For most kids,
When it comes to communicating with parents, a lot of KidMin leaders want to bang their head on a hard surface.
"It just seems like they don't care."
That's the conclusion that so many KidMin leaders have arrived at. But it's (mostly) not true. Parents really do want to hear about what their kids are learning in church and they want to continue that conversation at home.
So what's the problem?
For one, we as KidMin leaders need to be smarter about the way we communica
"How do you do it?" That's what my wife said to me a few months ago while we were driving in the minivan.
"Do what?" I said back.
"Tune them out."
In the back of the van, our 3 kids were causing their usual ruckus:
"How much longer?"
"Quit touching me!"
"Can we get a slushy?"
"It's a gift," I tell her like a zen master, unaware of the chaos behind me.
In actuality, though, it's not just a gift. It's a skill that I've been honing with many years of practice.
image via hajiu Are you ready for this? I'm about to give you the greatest piece of parent communication advice ever. Make sure you're someplace quiet where you can have your mind blown. If you have kids, maybe try the bathroom.
Okay, here it is...
If it's 1864 and you want to get a message to Abraham Lincoln, send it by carrier pigeon.
Gosh...now that I read that, it seems more confusing than mind blowing. My bad. Let me back up. I imagine Abraham Lincoln got a lot of
Dear KidMin leaders:
On behalf of the waste management industry, I would like to thank you for your continued use of the take home sheets. These unread parent communication tools fill the trash cans of many homes and church lobbies and provide job security for countless trash collectors.
Let me guess...
As much as you love the waste management industry, that's probably not what you have in mind when you hand out the take home sheets at the door.
You're probably hoping
Confession: before I was a parent, I was so judgy (that's a word, right?)
At the end of a church service, we would always give parents a "take home sheet." You probably know the kind that I'm talking about. It's a printout that tells parents what their kid learned in children's church and how to continue the conversation at home.
Sounds like a great idea!
But then I would see all of the take home sheets in the trash or littering the church floor and I would think, "Shee
A few Sundays ago, I was the guest teacher at a KidMin near my house. They had recently started using GO! curriculum and wanted to see what it looked like when the "pro" did it.
I brought my A-game. Or so I thought. There was one kid who seemed to be less than impressed.
It was my 3rd grade son.
After the service was over, he looked weepy. And when I asked him what was wrong, he went from weepy to full on chest-heaving, snot-faced, uncontrollable sobbing. Was I that bad?
Imagine for a second who your KidMin dream team would be. Who is your LeBron James? Your Magic Johnson? Your Michael Jordan? A group of people who are at the top of their KidMin game. A group who could take all of your ministry challenges and slam dunk them into oblivion.
Question: Wouldn't it be nice to have that team?
But would it surprise you if I said that when it comes to problem solving, that might not be the team you should be looking for. Let me exp
I love getting emails! No...not the ones from the Nigerian prince.
(Btw...I'm still waiting to hear back from you Prince Otumfuo. Did you get my money transfer?)
I'm talking about emails from my blog followers and the fast growing community of GO! curriculum users. I recently got an email from Michelle Ross. She's a GO! user and her story highlights one of the best ways you can get new families to return and stick to your church.
A few weeks ago, Michelle had 2 new kids vi
Here's a typical conversation with my 3rd grade son on the way home from church...
Me: How was church today?
Me: What did you talk about?
Me: What did you do while you were there?
Lincoln: Things. In summary, while my kid was at church he talked about stuff and did things. We've been at our church for awhile, so I happen to know that there's more to it than that. But what about your new families? Do they know what your KidMin is all about?
We love registration forms, yes we do. We love registration forms, how 'bout you?
I imagine this is how things might play out if your "new family" registration desk had a cheer squad. Let's face it, registering new families is a necessary way of capturing important information, but nobody really loves the process. Not even the captain of the registration desk cheer squad.
And it makes sense if you put yourself in the shoes of the new family.
If I were to let them, my kids would spin around revolving doors like a carnival ride until they puked. I'm not sure they even realize that revolving doors are for the purpose of entering and exiting buildings. They treat them more like a cheap carnival ride, cramming as many people as they can into a single compartment and spinning it as fast as it will go.
If you're a kid, revolving doors are great! But if you're a KidMin leader, not so much. Most of us have watched as new
3 years ago, after a ministry transition, my family and I began "church shopping" for the first time ever. It was super fun...
...for about a minute!
What I quickly realized is that being a new family in an unfamiliar church is really hard. It feels kind of like jumping into a hip hop class when you've been doing the cha-cha-cha for the past 10 years. Everyone knows the moves except for you, or so it seems.
To make matters worse, most churches don't do a good job of teachi
Too much of a talking head can be terribly boring for most kids. Inviting kids to interact during the Large Group lesson is a great way to foster active learning and it gives them ownership of the lesson, but it’s not without its perils. Even the best of kids can have villainous tendencies that jeopardize a lesson. If you want to become an “Inter-Action Hero,” here are a few alter egos to watch out for along with ways to counteract them:
The Joker: He’s just out for a go
“Houston…we have a problem!” If you’ve been a KidMin leader for any length of time, you’ve probably wanted to say something like this. Unfortunately, most of us are flying solo and don’t have a ground control to call into. Kids are great and well behaved most of the time, but problems still occur. Here are some things you can do to help prevent or address problems:
Establish rules. If you haven’t already, work with your leaders to come up with a short list of rules for the