ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Children's Sunday school lessons - 5 simple mistakes and how to learn from them

Updated on August 12, 2012

Imagine walking into a Sunday kids group, a teacher is sitting with the children gathered about her, sharing with them the treasures of scripture. You look at the children and realise they aren't really engaged with what's happening, so you decide to stay and watch. From this perspective the problems are obvious, but you wonder if she realises that she has fallen into one or more of the 5 most basic mistakes the children's ministry teachers make.

Availability over suitability,

Equality over individuality,
Result over effort,

Program over people,

& Time over message

Read on to find out how to spot these mistakes and what to do to stop yourself falling into them

Source
Source

Availability over suitability

Have you ever found a plastic bag stuffed with random objects, a scrap of paper attached states “kid's work” in capital letters. Ministry that works with empty cardboard tubes, yoghurt pots and old boxes will always need donations, but what do you do with the 'extras' that often turn up with them. I've seen too many sessions tailor the creative aspect to the resources they are left with, rather than the message they are teaching. When you get those random bits and pieces, think what would you like to use them for, make a note of the possible bible passages and then store them until that passage comes up.

Equality over individuality

According to Thomas Jefferson - “All men were created equal.” I don't believe that for a minute. I would like to say it's true but I'd rather pin my flag to - all men were created individual or with potential or in need of friendship and love. Equality is a big thing for kids, and favouritism is a big no-no. If you fall into favouritism you lose your credibility with the kids, but if you overplay equality then you lose love. To love truly is to treat each child as an individual, to expect different things of them as you recognise their different abilities and levels.

Do you have hovering mummy's in your groups, if mum always awards the prise to her own child, or tests out the lesson on them so they know the answers you need to stop it - yes it's uncomfortable, but it's only harming the group as a whole!

Source

Result over effort

Making mistakes is one of the most effective learning methods for both children and their teachers. Mistakes are not a bad thing, and yet many teachers fall into the trap of expecting their children to produce answers, worksheets, and crafts according to the 'right' way shown in the book. The effort the children show, the enthusiasm and engagement is a thing much more worthy of praise than the formulated expectation.

If you work with children with special needs don't forget that every child has special needs! Expecting no mistakes from them is as unfair as expecting normal reactions and results from the special needs child.

Source

Program over people

I think this is such a huge problem in so many groups. Sometimes you will find a newcomer skirt the edge and them walk away, not because the group is unwelcoming or irrelevant but because they feel they have to be a certain thing in order to fit into the program. Equally some many feel like a failure because they can only attend one of the myriad of sessions. Each session or group must be able to stand alone, each program must serve the people doing it not expect the people doing it to conform to their approach. Even if it's awkward, or means substituting just one part of many, review your programs, put the individual group first and they will blossom. (10 benefits of under-programming)

Source

Time over message

This is the hardest one to solve, the children's work often has to slip in between the first hymn and the coffee time. I've found children's workers who attach times to each activity, others plan the morning into a time chart. Weather you use timestamps or you have a free-flow, the timing has to be a servant not a master. Prioritise the parts of your lesson and let them overrun, if you aren't engaging the children ditch the activity and move on to something different, it may be that they will be more responsive to trying again at a different point, or that you can give them more time on something else.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)