Sending Kids on a MISSION!

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Kids come to church, listen, learn and then go home. But how do we impact how they live? It is so important to give children practical things they can do to live out what they are learning at church. Your curriculum likely calls that the “Application.” But just telling kids an application, doesn’t mean they’ll remember to do it! So how do you break into the routine and busyness of their week? Just like your lesson, you need to make the application fun. As we teach kids to share, give and be generous, we need to also provide them a way to DO it. How? Send them on a Mission! Our church is currently collecting school supplies for teaches and students at an inner city elementary school our church has partnered with. That is their mission. My mission is to make collecting these supplies fun. So last week, my son and I went to Walmart to demonstrate the Mission we want to send our kids on. Here is the video we made to get our kids excited about collecting these supplies. Making your own promo video is easy. I needed only an iPhone, a little bit of planning, and less …

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Creative Video Bible Story Telling

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We’ve all seen and perhaps used videos in children’s church. But did you know you can make your own? Here is a GREAT sample from a church where I’ll be doing some teaching training in the new year (via skype). I think it is a great example of how you can make a video that requires NO MEMORIZED LINES! Kids LOVE to see themselves on video – as well their friends. Plus, the experience of making the video also reinforces the learning process. Here is how the creator of the video described it: This was a project that was Jesus-inspired.  I have NO videography, director, script writing, etc. experience, but after a test run with my kids I thought this could be doable.  It’s shot on my iPhone 6 and as you know, edited on iMovie. The beauty of this project is a) no memorized lines; b) the film shoot can be chaotic and I’m giving directions the whole time, but it’s all muted and voiced over; c) isn’t dependent on kids all showing up on a given Sunday to perform and half of them are out for colds or vacation; d) gives parents something to take home and share; …

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Dan Huffman and Creatively Reaching Kids

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Kidology.org is the small ministry publisher. Dan Huffman is one of the most creative Children’s Pastors that I know. He often credits Kidology with helping him get started and providing his “blue print” for ministry – but since then, he has always blown me away with the creative ways he reaches children.One of the BEST Christmas Series I’ve ever seen is Dan’s The Stars of Christmas! Dan understands the value of video teaching – but has created a strategy he called “Media Rich but Teacher Driven.” As Dan says, “kids learn best when they are known and loved,” so small group times are done throughout the entire teaching experience. Best of all – he designed it to be easy! But ‘easy’ doesn’t mean it isn’t excellent. It is Top Notch! He is also the creator of the Great Adventure Cards – something he created to counter the obsession with Pokemon Cards that he observed in his ministry. A spin-off from these amazing Bible Cards is the Good News Cards, one of the most engaging and fun Gospel presentations I’ve ever seen. While the Bible Cards are earned for coming to church, bringing your Bible, friends, participating, etc. – The Good …

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AIM for EVERYONE

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I was reading a discussion over on the Kidology.org forums about how to teach to a wide age range and there were some comments suggesting different age ranges to aim for. Some were suggesting “aiming for the middle” or “targeting the older kids” so as not to bore them, whereas others thought it better to teach to the younger ones so as not to lose them. I’d like to suggest a different approach after having taught over 1,000 children’s church services to first through sixth graders for over fifteen years. It’s a rather simple suggestion: AIM FOR EVERYONE! The key in a large group with a large age range is to shift your focus constantly. The secret is to be highly visual and to be physically moving and animated to keep the younger ones tracking with you (don’t stand still and never sit, meaning you the teacher) and use humor constantly to keep a connection with your audience. Think about it: Senior pastors preach to a wide audience range of age and intelligence and education and world view and learning styles and they can do it! They don’t break their audience into groups! How do they do it? It isn’t …

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Check-in Without Lines?

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Imagine computer check-in without computers! Imagine secure check-in without lines. Sound impossible? Not any more. Thanks to the always innovating geniuses at KidCheck, secure check-in is getting even easier. As you can tell by the related links below, I’ve been an avid supporter and promoter of KidCheck for years. I love how they are always innovating to make child security easier and more effective each year. While other systems provide the basics – KidCheck continues to add features and benefits that not only provide a pick-up label, but improve communication between parents, volunteers, and leaders. AND NOW… (wait for it) … They have introduced Express Check-in. That means parents can check-in on their smart phone in the parking lot or while walking it, come to your check-in area, hit “PRINT” and be on their way to dropping off their kiddos without every standing in line or typing into a computer. Learn all about KidCheck Express Check-in Here. As I mentioned on my podcast today, the safety of kids is of the utmost importance to parents. When you have a secure check-in area, you score points with parents who want to have the peace of mind that their child is not …

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