How Are You Using Technology To Connect?

How are you using technology to reach today’s kids?

In his contribution to Greg’s Baird’s series on The Future of Children’s Ministry, Todd McKeever writes about how he has allowed texting during church to give tweens a safe way to ask tough questions. Since the average American teen now texts over 3000 times a day – it’s might be better to join ’em than to fight ’em!

Join the discussion on Kidology and share how YOU have tapped into technology to connect with kids or engage kids in your ministry.

BUT FIRST – watch this incredible video, and consider if you need to DISCONNECT from our cell phone a little more.

I know this convicted me:

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  1. I have started allowing phones and iPods to be used as a Bible. I figured why not. I use my phone and iPad to read my Bible.

  2. I am a children’s minister. But, I also hold a Master’s Degree in Educational Technology. In the world of education, there is a new concept called “backchanneling”. In this concept, cell phones, laptops, etc are all welcomed and even encouraged in workshops, classes, etc. A Twitter #hashtag is provided as a channel for the event. And all participants are encouraged to Tweet to discuss during the event. Many even take “Twitter breaks” to catch up on what they are missing. In this way the technology is not distracting, but instead it adds to what is being done.

    What I am brainstorming about now (no answers yet) is how to use this with kids. Although that day is definitely coming, I think that as of yet, most kid’s church age kids don’t have cell phones, yet.

    However, Tweeting during the service would be a good way to let parents know what is going on during kids service. And, if your pastor allows “backchanneling” as well, parents could actually interact with their kid’s service, while they are sitting in the adult service. It’s just something to think about. It’s not perfect, yet. And, one important thing to remember is ….. I fully agree that we should be using every vehicle available to send out our message. On the other hand, while doing my doctoral research, I found that studies show that technology used, just for the sake of saying you are using technology is actually counterproductive. It actually decreases the desired results. So, we have to be careful to evaluate everything and think, “Is this really better? Or, is it just something I’ve come up with to say I’m using technology?”

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