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  • Writer's pictureDavid Rausch

4 "Villains" of a KidMin lesson (and how to defeat them)

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 good laugh! And there’s nothing wrong with that as long as it doesn’t detract from the lesson. Inviting a kid to respond or participate requires trust, though. If the Joker’s antics become disrespectful or distracting, talk to him privately to let him know he’ll only be called on to participate if he can be trusted. I Forgot Bot: Her hand knows the answer, but it forgot to tell her mouth. If a kid raises her hand, but then suddenly goes silent, give her a short moment to remember, but then let her off the hook by saying something like, “You keep thinking about it and let me know if you remember.” Then go on to the next kid. Captain Random: He has an answer to the question, it’s just not your question. If a kid begins telling you a random story that has nothing to do with your question or the lesson at hand, politely interrupt him and tell him you’d love to hear his story later. Keep your word, though, and follow up with him afterwards. The Silent Stare-Masters: They’ll meet your question with a silent stare and then unleash a flurry of crickets on you. Sometimes the best way to get great responses from your kids is to ASK, GIVE, and CALL. ASK your question, GIVE your own answer or example, and then CALL on the kids for theirs. This does two things: it gives them a moment to think and it points them in the right direction.


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