kids sunday schoolKids Sunday School

3 Big Mistakes Teachers Make! –
and how YOU can avoid them!

OK, so you’ve been “volunteered” to do the kids Sunday School this week and you’re not quite sure what to do next. You may even have been given a lesson guide and some assistants to help out. To make sure you get off to the best possible start make sure you avoid these pitfalls and avoid the 3 big mistakes it’s so easy to make.

kids sunday school  Inappropriate Content for the age group

Remember to understand the age group you’re engaging with. 4-5 year olds will love David and Goliath and easily relate to the story of a “little” kid beating up on someone bigger.
10-12 year olds will be able to relate to having an “annoying” little sibling trying to take the glory from them. You can have a much deeper discussion about humility and looking good to your peers with that age group. The kins of lesson and activity you’re going to have will be very different for each age group. Make sure you plan ahead.

kids sunday school  Being too serious

OK, so it’s your first lesson and you want to do the right thing. You’ve thought about the story, questions to ask, craft and even prepared some take home activity sheets.
It’s all going well and they’re paying attention, then gradually first one, then two kids puts their hand up and want to go to the bathroom. Then that quiet little boy at the back of the group lies down under a table and the 2 smart girls up the front keep talking to each other.

What went wrong?

They’re BORED!

You’ve got to use your humour and get them to laugh. If you can make a kids laugh, you’ve got their attention.
Be careful not to try and stay too long on a single idea or passage. If you can communicate a single idea that they will remember then you have done a great job!

You are not delivering a sermon. Your job is to make it FUN kids sunday school for the kids so they grow up remembering that Church is a great place to be, NOT that they can remember 40 memory verses. The difference between a bad lesson and a good lesson is simply getting the kids to pay attention and enjoy the class.

kids sunday school  Not enough material/preparation

One of my rules is that you have to run out of lesson before you run  out of material, and not the other war around! kids sunday school
No matter what you think you’ve prepared, there will be times when the kids just zip right through it, or get listless and need to move on to the next thing.
If you don’t have next thing, you’re in big trouble!

  • Make sure you have a clear lesson plan. It’s not enough to know you’re going to teach about “David and Goliath” and use 1 Samuel 17. You need a main theme or point to communicate, like “What Giants are in your life?”
  • Have an activity that relates well to the Bible story. In this case it could be acting out a drama of the story (not too physically of course!) or having the kids write a list of their “Giants” and then stick them to the wall and throw rocks (paper of course!) at them to destroy them.
  • It pays to have a number of “backup” activities, games and options for you main story that you can turn to if the situation demands it.
    Always have an extra craft activity available for the kids who finish early. I make it a habit to keep unused sheet from previous lessons and recycle them as needed.
    If this is your first time you won’t have that luxury, so prepare twice much as you think you need. It won’t go to waste, you can use it next time or pass it on the the next teacher…

kids sunday school  What to do next

Remember to understand the age group you’re engaging with. 4-5 year olds will love David and Goliath and easily relate to David, likely being younger in their families.
The older 10-12 year olds will relates to David’s elder brothers and you can have a much deeper discussion about humility and looking good to your peers with that age group.

Have some jokes or fund games up your sleeve to start the lesson. Remember not to take yourself too seriously. The best teacher is one that has fun with the kids and that they look forward to being with. You are NOT preparing them for some end of life exam before the pearly gates. Your job is to make them want to come back next week.

Get some extra resources and activities. You cannot have too many ideas up your sleeve. The reason you planned for hours before the class is so you’ll have extra material to inject into the classroom when  discussion gets stale, NOT so that you’ll cover off ALL you points before they go home.

If you know of any great Sunday School lesson activities for kids of any ages you’d like to see posted up here just drop us a line via the comments section below.


Until next time

kids sunday school

Dwight Veenman

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