Connecting Students to a Church Family

Connecting Students to a CHurch Family - Teach One Reach OneIf you volunteer as a teacher or tutor in a faith based community program, you may mistakenly think your only task is to help your students with their academic work. In reality, you are using this opportunity to serve them as a way to not only reflect God’s love to them, but also to point them to God. One of the best ways you can help them with their faith walk is to get them involved in your local congregation.

You would think inviting your students to worship at the local congregation would come naturally to Christian volunteers. Unfortunately, even the best, most loving Christian teachers can feel themselves freeze when they want to ask their students or the parents to attend worship. To be truly effective in your ministry though, you need to find ways to get past that frozen feeling and introduce your families to the Church family.

There are actually several ways you can approach the subject, that may seem a little more natural to you and less threatening to the parents of your students. I have seen these work well over the years and have even used many of these myself.

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Using Music to Teach the Bible (And Other Subjects)

Using Music to Teach the Bible (And Other Subjects) - Teach One Reach OneMusic can be one of your biggest assets in your volunteer teaching efforts. Yet in most classrooms music is rarely if ever heard. Oh, an occasional Bible class of young children may sing some old standards, but it is rare to find music being used to educate students.

Music is a special language many people understand better than the written or spoken word. It can stir emotions, communicate important messages and even help with memorization. Teachers working with children who have special needs learned the power of music in the classroom years ago.

If you want to start using music in your Bible class or faith based tutoring program, here are some ideas to get you started:

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The Well-Lived Volunteer Teaching Life

The Well-Lived Volunteer Teaching Life - Teach One Reach OneHopefully someone has thanked you for your ministry of teaching. Oh, you may not be a “professional” teacher. You may “only” volunteer once a month or once a week. You may just be “helping” a church or a ministry. Whether you understand the impact of what you are doing or not, the reality is – you have a teaching ministry.

Your teaching and how you interact with your students and their parents can have an enormous impact on their spiritual growth and health. You may be the person they are looking to as a reflection of God’s love. You can even be an example for the families you are serving for a loving Christian who serves and shares her faith.

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Asking Kids the Best Questions

Asking Kids the Best Questions - Teach One Reach OneQuestioning is one of the most powerful tools a teacher has. Yet even many professionally trained teachers ask questions that are not designed to help their students develop and grow. Volunteer teachers often struggle with the whole idea of even asking questions. Often their own experience as a student will color how a teacher handles questioning in their classroom.

If you were a shy child who hated being asked questions in class, you may avoid asking questions at all. If you were a competitive child, you may make every questioning opportunity a contest to see who knows the most. If you were a “wild” child, you may use questions to attempt to discipline a child by embarrassing him – just like your teachers did to you when you were younger.

Handled properly, good questions can take the learning your students do in your class to a much deeper and more meaningful level. Good questions can help change minds and lives. Good questions can motivate and excite. Bad questions can add nothing to your class in the best case scenario and actually harm your students in several ways in the worst case scenario.

So what do you need to think about when questioning your students?

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Reaching the Ultimate Goal With Your Students

Reaching the Ultimate Goal With Your Students - Teach One Reach OneWhether you teach a regular children’s Bible class or tutor in a Bible based program, your ultimate goal with your students may not have occurred to you. If you don’t set concrete goals for your class, I encourage you to do so. If you do, your goals may range from making sure they know the stories from the Bible to hoping they commit some Bible verses to memory to praying they pass their next English test.

What you may not have thought about much is the real, ultimate goal for your students. What is it? Your number one goal for every student in your class is to do whatever you can to help each of those children to get to heaven. While you are not personally responsible for the choices your students ultimately make in life, you are responsible for helping them to have the tools they need to make those godly choices.

One of the most important choices any of your students will ever make is whether or not to be baptized and give their lives to God – becoming a Christian. The age of your students will determine whether or not they are ready for this important decision and every child is slightly different. Teachers often shy away from teaching children about baptism for fear of upsetting parents. While I do not advocate guilting or scaring a child into a decision they are too young to make, I don’t believe the topic should be excluded from your class either.

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