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I was leisurely enjoying the summer weather, contemplating going to the pool and planning out our upcoming camping trip, when it happened—the list of required school supplies arrived. School supplies?! Already?! But summer had just begun! I feel like this happens to me every year. Summer flies by, and before I know it we’re nearing the end of July and the return to school. 

It seems as though the task of recruiting Sunday School teachers should still be in the distant future, but in reality, fall programs are just around the corner. It’s important to start recruiting now to ensure volunteers are in place in the fall. After all, we’re only five weeks from Labor Day. Does that cause you to panic? No need, my friend! We may be whizzing through summer, but with these 5 tips for recruiting Sunday school teachers, you’ll have your volunteers in place in no time!

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask. It’s not your job to say no for someone. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve procrastinated contacting someone for a volunteer role because I thought they would say no. Often, when I finally did contact them, I was surprised to hear an affirmative response. It never hurts to make the ask.
  2. Think outside the box. Teachers or retired teachers are always a great option for leading a Sunday school class, but they aren’t the only option. One of my most beloved Sunday school teachers works outside the education field, but she has a heart for mentoring 3rd- to 5th-grade girls and for the past 15+ years has been faithfully teaching that age group.
  3. Use the Discover Your Gifts Survey. Did you know this survey is available for free online? This is a great way to evaluate the gifts of your congregation members and identify those who would be a good fit for teaching Sunday school. Encourage your whole church to take the survey together to help identify new volunteers. 
  4. Include stories and experiences from current volunteers in your promotion. The most effective way to recruit new volunteers is to interview a current volunteer in front of the whole church. Congregation members will relate to the reasons why the current volunteer enjoyed their role and hear that the tasks aren’t as scary as they sound, which gives them encouragement to step into a new role.
  5. Use the Children’s Ministry Toolkit to Call, Encourage, and Equip Leaders. Our Children’s Ministry Toolkit has a whole list of other links and ideas that can help you as you recruit volunteers for Sunday school or other ministries. Once you’re on the toolkit page, just scroll down to the “Calling, Encouraging and Equipping Leaders” section and expand it by clicking on the plus sign to the right.

These are just five of many ways to recruit Sunday school teachers. What tips do you have? Are there ways your whole church supports this process? Post your ideas on our Dwell Facebook page. And if there’s any way I can support you in your Dwell ministry, please contact me at [email protected].

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