In the children’s Bible storybooks that I read to my daughter the opening pages begin with, “This is a story from God’s book, the Bible. It’s for [say name(s) of your child(ren)]. It’s for me too!”
How do youth and children call us to re-imagine what it means to be and do church? What, theologically, does it mean to be a young person in today’s church and world? How should our theology (re)shape the ways in which we minister with children and youth?
It’s a wild ride from September to January, but you made it!! Now its midway through the season and a lot has changed—it’s time to take a fresh look at the itinerary and recalculate as necessary...
The suspense builds as all the barn animals get ready for a special arrival and wonder who is coming. They dust the beams, lay eggs, and make room. At last they welcome Mary and Joseph as each snout pushes in for a better view of baby Jesus lying in Mary’s arms.
On Thanksgiving Day (USA), YouVersion launched a new Bible app for kids. It promises to be an animated adventure designed to help kids explore the big stories of the Bible and begin cultivating a love for Scripture at a young age.
Advent is almost here! During this busy holiday season celebrating Advent can help us focus our attention on the coming of Christ. Do you plan to do anything special with your class?
When I heard that members of Faith Church (RCA) in Dyer, Indiana had developed a Heidelberg Catechism game for kids I just had to get a copy. I’m always looking for resources to recommend to parents for starting faith conversations at home, or to Sunday school teachers for the downtime as everyone is arriving for class.
We have a few special needs children in our congregation. Are their resources to help me (the Children's pastor) to learn how to help them best learn so that I can teach my Dwell teachers. We have some behavior issues that are the biggest concern. These behavior issues are linked to the child's...
When was the last time you taught a Sunday school lesson on a Psalm? (Okay, other than Psalm 23?)
The planning process is where the rubber meets the road—we’ve been learning, exploring, and thinking during the research phase, but now it’s time to get down to business! In the planning phase we begin asking practical questions like how children will be grouped. In broad age level grouping, K-3 and 4-6 for example, or standard grade levels, preschool, K-1, 2-3, etc? What kinds of children and leader’s resources would be helpful for teaching and learning...
I’ve spent most of my life and ministry in small congregations with limited budgets. So when I see the cost of leader’s guides and student pieces adding up, I feel the sticker shock...
Looking for a litany to use for commissioning your Sunday school team? Here are some sources to check out ...
It's September! Are you ready to share the stories of faith? To create space for wonder, awe, worship, and imagination? Sometimes the thing that takes a lesson from excellent to amazing is the little spark of creativity that piques kid's interest.
When does your Sunday school program begin, and what are you doing to kick it off?
No one likes to make rules or enforce them, but ministry is much more managable when the expectations are clear! Here's what one church is doing to start the Sunday School season with high standards.
Lately a lot of my phone conversations have started like this, “I have two kindergartners, one second grader, and a fifth grader, what would you recommend?” Or, a church may have been using a grade level curriculum designed for 4th and 5th graders with a class of 3rd 4th and 5th graders. Now they are ready to loop back to year 1, but the kids who were in 3rd grade when they started have already had those exact lessons… Now what? Stretch the 2nd-3rd grade material to work for a year? Dip into the 6-8th grade material?
Well folks, its curriculum selection season. Over the next several weeks I’m going to share some of these Q&A’s in a new series I'm calling Curriculum Q&A’s. (Catchy, right?)
Looking for new ideas for praying with kids in your classroom next season? Check out these creative prayer practices collected on Pinterest by our friends at the NC Synod Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Each season provides an opportunity for updating your records for the kids in your program. I've seen many variations of registration forms, but most include these basics . . .
I am retiring this year as Sunday school co-ordinator at our church after a joyful decade in that role. I want to make sure the hand-off to our new co-ordinator is as smooth as possible -- that I offer guidance/help where needed, while giving grace and space for the new co-ordinator to put her...
Sophie, my fifteen month old daughter, spends two days a week at daycare. I was eager to attend the first parent conference this spring to hear about what she's learning and how they see her developing. What if the same thing happened in our children and youth ministry programs?
With food allergies on the rise, are Sunday school snacks worth the risk? Check out these lists of safe snacks that Community Reformed put together for their children's ministry. What are you doing to keep the kids in your care safe?
VBS is a special time. Try these ideas for building a summer ministry team and planning an unforgettable week for your kids!
Looking for a way to ease the August stress of searching for volunteers? Check out this blog post from veteran children’s minister, Linda Freeman, who offers week by week ideas for planning a month long focus on volunteer recruitment.
Many Sunday schools take a break during the summer months. If yours is one of them, how do you say goodbye to your class as you send them off to enjoy the sunshine? If you’re coming to your last week of Sunday school, consider setting aside time do something special. Here are a few ideas. . .