Posts Tagged "Teaching Tips"

The Play That Doesn’t Work

imageI’m way behind in updating this site for articles I publish over on the Ministry-to-Children.com site. So, here is another synopsis of an article which I published over on Ministry-to-Children.com.  The article titled HERE’S AN EASY WAY TO TEACH BIBLE STORIES TO CHILDREN was published on May 10, 2010.

Brief Synopsis

This article goes over a technique that allows you to retell any Bible story over and over again while the kids in your class have a great time learning it. 

Read More

#35 – Get the Kids Involved (Tips For Large Group Teaching)

Welcome to a continuing series of tips on working with large groups of children. I hope that you will find these tips useful and be able to implement them in your dealings with large groups of kids. If you do, please leave a comment and let us know. For a complete list of posts in this series, please see the index page. So, without further introduction, here is today’s installment.

Some kids will be perfectly fine sitting and listening to you talk for 30 minutes.  Unfortunately, those kids are few and far between.  In order to keep the interest of most kids, you’ll need to find some way to mix it up from week to week.  We’ve talked about several ways of doing that thus far in this series, and there are several more to come.  One of the ways that I’ve found to be most effective for me is to simply get the kids involved in the large group teaching.  Get them up off their rear ends and make them part of the story.  Unlike other methods we have and will discuss, this one doesn’t tend to get “old” as quickly.  I think that’s because each week the kids are acting out something differently.

One of my favorite moments thus far was when I was recounting the story of Solomon and the two prostitutes for a lesson on wisdom.  When I got to the part where Solomon raised his sword to cut the baby in half, the young boy who was playing Solomon asked, eagerly, if he really got to cut the baby in half – priceless!

Read More

#12 – Get Fired Up! (Tips For Large Group Teaching)

Welcome to a continuing series of tips on working with large groups of children. I hope that you will find these tips useful and be able to implement them in your dealings with large groups of kids. If you do, please leave a comment and let us know. For a complete list of posts in this series, please see the index page. So, without further introduction, here is today’s installment.

I really ought to start this out this installment with a disclaimer – today’s post is in reaction to a pet peeve of mine.  That pet peeve is that I can stand to listen to monotone, uninspired, unemotional presentations of God’s Word.  Now, don’t get me wrong – every second of every teaching does not need to be over the top gut wrenching emotion (we’ll save that for the televangelists).  But, we’re teaching about God.  We are talking about the creator of everything in the universe.  We imparting the knowledge of him he came to earth to save us from our sins.  We are proclaiming the good news of our God who died for us and rose on the third day to conquer death and save of from our sins – not because we deserve it, but because he loves.  In the face of that kind of love, how can you help but be excited?  Furthermore, how will kids ever get excited about God if we are not excited when we teach them?  So, get fired up about GOD and then impart that fire in the kids you are teaching!

Read More

#11 – Build On What They Already Like (Tips For Large Group Teaching)

Welcome to a continuing series of tips on working with large groups of children. I hope that you will find these tips useful and be able to implement them in your dealings with large groups of kids. If you do, please leave a comment and let us know. For a complete list of posts in this series, please see the index page. So, without further introduction, here is today’s installment.

I read an article recently from an older gentleman who was told that he was now too old to be involved in Children’s Ministry.  The consensus in the comments to that article was that the ability to serve in Children’s Ministry has nothing to do with age and everything to do with staying relevant.  By relevant, it just means that you must put yourself in a position to talk to the kids in your classroom about the things they do and the things they like.

For me, this is easy because of my circumstances.  I teach 5-6 year olds and I have both a six year old girl and an eight year old boy at home.  Hardly a week goes by where I have not watched an episode of Zach & Cody on Deck or listened to Hannah Montana.  I know who Phineas and Ferb are.  I know what video games they like because I buy them.  Truth be told, I like to play them as well.  I know what the new game systems are.  We have several of them at our house.  I’ve seen the latest movies.  I know what the kids see on television and in the movies.  I know what kind of foods they like and the newest gimmicks in the grocery stores.  I follow the same sports.  I know the difference between a Bakugan and a Pokeman.  I use facebook and twitter.  In my case, I don’t have to make a concerted effort to go out and learn these things because they are part of my everyday life.  Even given my circumstance, I still have to make a concerted effort to take note of what I see and observe.  Being immersed in kid culture does me no good in conversation if I can’t remember any of it.

If you are in a different circumstance, you might have to do a little more work to keep up.  Subscribe to a kids’ magazine.  Watch the occasional kids program on TV.  Go to a kids’ movie.  Anymore, most of the kids’ movies that are made include enough stuff for adults to at least entertain you a little bit while you’re learning.  If you don’t know where to start, ask the kids.  Years ago when my kids were much younger and I was working with a class of 2nd graders, I asked them all what their favorite television shows were.  They loved telling me about them, and I made a point to find and watch each show they mentioned that week.  Over the course of the next year, it gave me a launching point for conversations that enabled me to really connect with them.

Read More

#10 – The Dreaded Discipline System (Tips For Large Group Teaching)

Welcome to a continuing series of tips on working with large groups of children. I hope that you will find these tips useful and be able to implement them in your dealings with large groups of kids. If you do, please leave a comment and let us know. For a complete list of posts in this series, please see the index page. So, without further introduction, here is today’s installment.

Large groups all have some sort of discipline system.  Whether it is spoken or reduced to writing, any large group of people has its own discipline system or it devolves into chaos and anarchy.  We set up a system in our classroom when we were having problems with the kids interrupting and talking too much during the large group lesson.  I will not go into the details the system, but suffice to say that there are four key components to any good discipline system:

  1. First, set up your system as a reward system.  Don’t punish the kids for not doing something they should – reward them for doing what you do ask.
  2. Two, keep it simple.  If the system gets so complex that you can’t administer it and the kids can’t remember it, then it doesn’t do anyone any good.
  3. Three, communicate the system clearly to the kids.  They need to understand exactly how the system works, what they can and can’t do, and what the rewards are.
  4. Finally, don’t enforce it yourself during the large group teaching time unless you have no other option.  This may seem a bit counterintuitive, but if you have to interrupt your large group teaching every time a kid can’t keep his hands to himself, it will destroy the flow of your teaching and reduce its effectiveness.  Rely on other leaders and volunteers to enforce the discipline system.  Make the system clear to them as well, and ask for their help!

Remember, discipline is about discipling a child, and having a system in place is as much about the other kids in the room as the child who is receiving the discipline.  Many people don’t want to implement a discipline system because they want the kids to “have fun” in their classrooms.  This view ignores two important considerations:

Read More