I am excited and honored to be the first to tell you about a BRAND NEW curriculum for children’s church! It is called DiscipleTown! While it is part of the comprehensive children’s discipleship strategy from DiscipleLand, it is a highly creative and fliexible children’s church curriculum that will work in ANY church setting. More details and a chance to pre-order will released NEXT WEEK.
Here is a SNEAK PEEK VIDEOleaked on YouTube direct from the author, who you just might recognize, even with the shades on!
FORWARD TO YOUR FRIENDS AND HELP SPREAD THE WORD!
If you are still choosing what to teach in September, let me encourage you to plan on DiscipleTown! The first unit will be a four week series on How to Worship, which is a wonderful way to start out the school year – and as a downloadable product, it will be in your hands soon! You can then use whatever else you have planned in October. You are welcome to ask questions in comments, and I will answer the best I can. Complete details will be coming NEXT WEEK!
Because if you do, you will discover the best deal on Kidology.org in years!
We are facing a significant need that just might present YOU with a significant opportunity!
These are tough times. Your family feels it. Your church feels it. And so does Kidology.
Did you know that we give away free memberships every month to missionaries, students, small churches and honestly anyone who expresses an inability to pay our membership fee? Not a very wise business practise, huh? But then, we aren’t a business; we are a ministry supported by generous donors we call Kidology Champions. This year we have seen a sharp decline in donors and an increase in scholarship requests.
SO WE GOT AN IDEA!
In order to start this fall on target with our annual budget, finish our site launch and begin the next phase of enhancements we have planned, we need 150 more Champion Donors in 2009. That’s 150 more generous people who are willing to donate 99 dollars to host Kidology.org for a day.
AND WE’RE GONNA MAKE IT A SWEET DEAL!
Limited only to the next 150 Kidology Champions – as a thank you for your $99 gift you will receive a copy of the Kidology Handbook ($59 value) and ANY single Kidology Download Product of your choice. Yup, you heard that right. ANYTHING. You name it. Kidology Leadership Lab, Kids Church Unit, Whatever. You name it, if Kidology makes it, we will give it to you. For free. The combined value is well over $99!
SO IN TOUGH TIMES, WE BOTH GAIN!
Simply Use This Link to make your Champion Donation of $99 and we will contact you to choose your download product. (Your Kidology Handbook will be mailed immediately.)
My life online is changing. I used to blog a lot more than I do now. I love my blog and I do have people bug me to “blog more” – but the reality I connect in other ways, and I do have this other little site where over 20,000 people come each and every day, so when I am starring at my laptop wondering what to blog about, there is a part of me that says, “why blog? you don’t need a blog.” But my blog gives me an outlet for posts that don’t quite fit on Kidology – either they are CM related or are more personal. So in the spirit of both blogging, and why it is harder to blog lately, I’ll reflect on:
HOW HAS MY LIFE ONLINE CHANGED?
#1 My iPhone has changed online life for me! Dramatically. I do Facebook and Twitter almost exclusively from my iPhone. Seriously, when I’m at my computer, I have WORK to do! I can even do WordPress blogging from my iPhone, but haven’t found the practical need to do som, maybe I should try that more – for personal outings. I really want to blog more – I need to figure out how to do this, whichout it becoming a duty or obligation.
First, some thoughts on FACEBOOK and TWITTER and WHY I BROKE THE LINK BETWEEN THE TWO. I probably just lost half my audience! But the rest, have been asking.
Since I started on Facebook, I had my “Tweets” (Twitter status updates) automatically update my Facebook status. Why? Because I was first and foremost a Twitter user and Facebook was an afterthought – it was something for college kids, right? But I had an account because underneath this aging body, I’m still that young Moody student, right? Times are changing, Facebook is now made up of MORE OVER 35 PEOPLE than college kids (much to their frustration!) and becoming the #1 networking site in the world. (could ultimately be a blog killer) I ended up slowing down my Twitter use because I didn’t want to be overwhelming my Facebook status with every little Twitter update – which tend to me more trivial and more links; news feeds, marketing, and twitter conversation. Now, thanks to Selective Twitter Status (a Facebook Ap) by ending my Tweets in #fb I can selectively decide which Tweets end up as my Facebook status and only change my FB status 1-3 times a day, where as I may tweet 10-20 times a day.
I AVOID FACEBOOK on the computer because I rather hate it. Please don’t invite me to groups and causes I ignore them all, and please don’t take it personally. If you invite me to be a Fan of starving children on the moon and I ignore it, it isn’t because I don’t care about starving children on the moon, it is that being a fan of them won’t feed them, it will give me more email and things to click every day. They get fed by people feeding them, and if you are feeding them, GOD BLESS YOU, I too am devoting to giving to and supporting charities and have founded one myself.
Facebook is for networking with people – and I use it exclusively for that – and I LOVE THE iPHONE APP because that is ALL IT DOES. No groups, no causes, no games, no snowballs, no pokes, none of the stupid Facebook stuff, just Friends, Status, and Messages. Ahhhh, the good stuff. I love my friends and family, all of them! (Even the ones I have no idea who they are!)
Now that I have freed my Twitter from the question, “Do I really want this on my Facebook page too?” I feel liberated again! I can tweet anything at any time, and the fun has returned! When I see something that makes me laugh, snap a pic, and tweet it. When I’m irritated, rant to the world. If a company gives bad services, finally there is consequence, with instant feedback to the world, interaction with friends and family, checking in on others, twitter is just fun and fills idle moments. Yes, there are times to just turn off the iPhone and enjoy your family or a quiet moment, and I do, no worries. But when you are fueling the car, or stuck by the train, the only option you had in the past was the radio. Twitter puts my in charge of my loose time. (I don’t like calling it ‘free’ time, because often it isn’t ‘free’ it’s costly, but it I’m not able to spend it the way I’d prefer to!) Follow me at www.twitter.com/kidologist
And in case you are the last to finally hear about it, we finally got the ALL NEW Kidology.org launched, and besides the personal excitement over it, I am loving the new dynamically loaded home page so I am CONSTANTLY checking the home page for what is the latest discussions in the forum and jumping to chime in. My personal interaction in the forum has probably soared – which is probably a good thing since I’m the creator of the website!
I also have a new “From the Kidologist” spot on the home page (also posts and archives here on my blog) that I’ve enjoyed updating) that gives me an opportunity to talk directly to the visitors to Kidology.org, granted, IF they scroll down on the home page. I put my spot “below the fold” intentionally as I’m not the most important thing, but I am glad to have a place on the home page so that it’s a little more prominent.
Leadership Training has never been so easy, so affordable, and so FUN!
I have been honored to be invited to speak on children’s ministry leadership at conferences all over America (and overseas). I’ve written on it in books and magazines, and been a personal coach for pastors, a consultant for ministry leaders and on factulty teaching at the under graduate level and as a guest instructor at the graduate level, but it has always been a concern of mine that most leaders can not travel to conferences or attend school, but need training!
Learn in any order, at your own pace, even save by buying the bundle, but make the time to invest in yourself! Become the leader you want to be! YOU CAN DO IT! And Kidology Online Training can help!
As I watched I felt “it”. You know that feeling you get when God is telling you that’s “it?” I knew immediately that this teaching was for me and my kids. Thank you for being so commited and putting this training in the hands of so many. Kidology has been a life line to me. Knowing that I am not alone, is a wonderful feeling. I already feel myself getting on the track, and making the first slow steps to winning the race. Thank you. – Stacey Wilkes
I recently was blessed to spend a week with Pastor Todd McKeever, a true champion of children’s ministry, ministering at a kids crusade at his church in Arkansas.
I appreciate Todd for a variety of reasons, and not just because he has been a member and supporter of Kidology.org nearly since the beginning both as a member and Champion and CP Team Captain, but because he a great leader.
What makes Todd a great leader?
He always pushes for excellence. Nothing Todd does is half-baked and nothing frustrates him more than settling for the minimum. He is always asking how it can be done better, look sharper, and be more effective. After our first Sunday at his church his first questions were, “What was your experience? First impressions? What was difficult? What could we do better?” Next I found a survey in my email. Everything Todd touches can’t help but improve, and that is a mark of a leader.
He has an insatiable appetitive for learning and growing. Todd is the personification of “leaders are readers.” His idea of a family outing is a trip to Barnes and Noble to read together. The latest books are open on his desk with bookmarkers sticking out of the places he doesn’t want to forget and his twitter account flows with quotes he want to remember and share. Twice when I dropped by his office last week training recordings were playing on his computer. Here is a guy with a lot to offer who hasn’t stopped learning, and that is a mark of a leader.
He is humble. For Todd, it’s never about Todd. Eager to serve and sleeves rolled up, Todd is as likely to be the guy who helps clean up afterward as he is to be the guy who came up with the grand idea in the first place. Realizing that he is there to serve and not be served is a mark of a leader.
He pours into the lives of others. When Todd talks about the ministry, he talks about people. I talk to a lot of leaders who are eager to show me this program or this facility or that aspect of the ministry, but once I was coming to his church, Todd had people he was eager for me to meet. Realizing that the ministry is made up of people is a mark of a leader.
He encourages others to go to the next level. And this is probably what I appreciate the most about Todd. He isn’t just trying to build himself or his ministry, he desires to build into his friends and colleagues. He gently but persistently challenges those he knows to improve, to push ahead, to tackle that next thing. Knowing that we all rise best when we rise together is a mark of a leader.
Todd, me and Charley
(They want you to know I’m up on a step!)
Thanks, Todd, for a great week of ministry together, and for your encouragement and investment in me as a friend and brother. The world needs more friends like Todd McKeever!
I’ve led over 1000 children’s church services and all of them have been run by kids. As described in my Kids Church Book (available as a download) I use what I call my K.C. Krew, and they help not only run Kids Church, but plan and prepare as well. In addition to all they do every week, from set up to running sound, acting is skits, doing puppets, taking the offering, leading games, to the take down – at least once a year I would guide them through a process of writing their own lesson.
I’d start with telling them how I come up with topics, how I study the Bible, how I choose the activities and write the various components of the lesson. It is a great opportunity for them to understand what happens even deeper behind the scenes and to be trained to do it themselves.
Well, one year, they BLEW ME AWAY!
After discussion and prayer, we decided to teach on peer pressure. We turned to the Bible to decide how it could help us adddress this need biblically, and while I was rackin’ my brain for a verse on peer pressure, one of the kids (granted, the pastor’s son, Andy) came up with the idea of using the story of Ester, since she had to deal with peer pressure both from her royal family as well as her people and decide to do the right thing.
Then they began to talk about how we could help the children EXPERIENCE the story of Ester, rather than just hear it again. We came up with the most crazy and fun lesson, and the COMPLETE SERVICE is available below as a video download.
In summary: There would be an election, and the kids would actually vote on a Mayor of Kids Town, one who promised to put the “kid back in kids town” and our Puppetume mail man, would be credited as helping him win the election – but then, the mayor would shock everyone by banning all puppets from Kids Town! (The other candidates were Barney the Purple Dinosaur, Darth Vader, and the Kids Town hampster!) The new major didn’t realize that Henry, the mail man, was actually a puppet, and Henry had to choose between his new privileged standing with the mayor, or sticking up for “his people,” the puppets. As you can guess, in the end, he did the right thing and the puppets were saved!
But the ideas my Krew came up with where amazing – a press conference in the back of the room that was projected to the front – a video of all the puppets leaving Kids Town, to a fullly scripted movie of the Story of Ester starring our own main puppets, Gus and Molly. Not to mention, the entire election aspect. It was an amazing Sunday that I am still often talking about and describing in workshops on my K.C. Krew.
So, thanks to some Kidology.org members asking in the forum, here are two items for you:
1) The YouTube video of just the Puppet Eviction video – which was very fun to make, and luckily was done in one take:
2) A download of the entire service in MP4 format, 212MB, so be patient.
Let me encourage you as strongly as I can: DO NOT DO ANYTHING A KID CAN DO! Your job as a teacher is not just to pass on information, it is to make disciples, and kids learn best by DOING. So don’t just let them help you – let them lead! Ask them for input and give them opportunities to serve and lead. We often wonder why many adults don’t have a servant heart and just expect to come to church and watch – maybe its because we trained ‘em that way as children!
This week, I’d like to encourage you to check out the brand new Kidology Surveys. This is YOUR PLACE to voice your opinion as well as see what others are thinking on various topics in children’s ministry.
I would especially appreciate your feedback on Kidology.org in the How I Use Kidology.org survey, and you’ll notice the results can only be seen by our staff, so you can feel free to be honest. (but be nice too!)
We also plan to have some fun surveys as well, such as the current In a Pinch! survey that is just about your favorite “last minute” teaching technique.
So just over to SURVEYS now and add your input. AND, if you have a suggestion for a survey, let me know!
If you missed the past updates, you can check them out on the Archive, or visit either directly:
Most likely, not many of you are subscribers to YFC Alumni News, but if you were, you’d have seen Kidology Coaching‘s Barney Kinard featured! Here is the article in full, including a perhaps never-before-seen picture of Barney as a young student!
In the fall of 1960, I entered a Preacher-Boy Contest sponsored by Youth for Christ in Denver, Colorado, under the leadership of Jim Groen. I did not win the contest, but God used that experience the next day to call me into the ministry to preach the word.
After graduation from Littleton High School I began my preparation for ministry by attending Moody Bible Institute. Upon graduation in 1964, I attended Biola University and then graduated from Azusa Pacific University in 1966. Graduate work began at Talbot Theological Seminary and graduation followed from Fuller Theological Seminary in 1972. After ordination, in 1972, I became the itinerant Children’s Evangelist with Creative Children’s Ministries out of Buena Park, CA, where currently I serve as CEO, President. My vision now is to creatively evangelize children and help others to do the same.
For over 38 years I have successfully been evangelizing children in crusades and rallies, training leaders, creating resources, writing and mentoring others in children’s ministry. The first 10 years of my ministry was in church-staff positions, all involving children. During the last ten years I have also been doing short-term missionary trips to reach children in other countries. I am a puppeteer, a gospel magician, a story teller and a master of object lessons. I have been working with dummies since 1972, while trying to add methods that would attract children in fun ways. I am a ventriloquist and have several vent figures. I love to train others to use these performing arts in their ministry.
My wife, Sharon, and I have been happily married for 43 years. We have four grown children, all married and active Christians, and eight precious grandchildren.
All this started from the YFC Preacher-Boy Contests in Denver, Colorado. I was active in this YFC program only in my senior year at Littleton High School. I was the YFC Club Vice President and was active on the Bible Quiz Team, which qualified us to go the Nationals at Winona Lake, Indiana, in the summer of 1961. Also I became the Club Coordinator for Chicagoland YFC, where I helped start new YFC clubs, under Dave Breeze, while attending Moody Bible Institute (1961-1962).
I remain grateful for the influence of YFC in my life, over 48 years later.
Visit Barney’s website www.kidhelper.com to learn more about Creative Children’s Ministries.
Regardless of whether you love this guy and think he’s the best thing since sliced bread, or think he’s bankrupting us into socialism… chill out and enjoy this video: (in other words, I’m not trying to start an argument… just relax and learn to laugh if you get bent out of shape by anything political, please!)
When I read the testimonial to the right recently, it made my day! Just imaging a bunch of kids in South Africa having a “water war” because of a post I wrote nearly ten years ago brought a huge smile to my face.
That’s what I love about Kidology, not just getting great e-mails about how the site has impacted our members leadership, ministries or children, but because it enables the reach of even the simplest idea to be multiplied and magnified beyond what you can even imagine.
I probably spend more time on the Testimonial Page than most. Whenever I get overwhelmed by the things to do, the emails to answer, the projects to work on or the deadlines that keep getting pushed back, all I need is a few minutes being reminded that not only is what I do today making a difference, but what I did years ago is still making a difference today.
And it’s not just me, it’s YOU TOO!
When you take time to SUBMIT AN IDEA to Kidology.org, you are not only helping Leon in South Africa and Barb in Japan, but Katie in Alaska, Joanne in Brazil, and Chikondi in Malawi! Not to mention thousands of children’s workers in every state of America, Canada and throughout South America and Europe and places you’ve never heard of like the Christmas Islands!
You make our day, not only when we get an encouraging word in our e-mail, but when you help us in our mission of equipping and encouraging those who minister to children by sharing what God has given YOU!
I am personally convinced that one person can be a change catalyst, a “transformer” in any situation, any organization. Such an individual is yeast that can leaven an entire loaf. It requires vision, initiative, patience, respect, persistence, courage, and faith to be a transforming leader.
~ Stephen R. Covey