Archive | Encouragement

The One Quality Sunday School Teachers Must Have To Be Effective

The One Quality Sunday School Teachers Must Have To Be Effective - Teach One Reach OneI guess the first question we must ask is, “What defines effective Sunday School teaching?” If we asked 100 different people, we would probably get 100 slightly different answers. I would imagine for most of us though, we would consider ourselves effective if we made a positive difference in the spiritual foundation building of our students.

We sometime allow ourselves to forget the purposes of Sunday School (or any Bible class for that matter). Initially, Sunday School was created (educated guess, I grant you) to assist parents in teaching their children about God and what He wanted for them and from them. It was an opportunity to reinforce what the parents were already teaching at home. If done really well, it also provided additional practice in Christian Life Skills, teaching areas of the Bible not yet taught at home and more.

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Teaching Children’s Bible Classes Like Your Hair Is On Fire

Teaching Children's Bible Classes Like Your Hair Is On Fire - Teach One Reach One

I tab great ideas in books. This one came away with plenty.

The focus of Teach One Reach One is helping volunteers in churches, ministries and on the mission field enhance what they are doing as they teach the Bible to children and teens (granted sometimes with a little secular education added in faith based tutoring programs). Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of great outside resources I can suggest for you to read that I believe are really going to take your teaching to the next level.

Most of the best books on education are written for the secular educator. With a little tweaking though, they can often give you lots of great tips for your Bible class as well.

Teach Like Your Hair is On Fire by Rafe Esquith is a classic in education circles. There is a reason books become classics. In non-fiction circles, it is usually because a lot of people have found them helpful. This book is no exception.

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Do Personalities Matter for Children and Teen Bible Class Teachers?

Do Personalities Matter for Children and Teen Bible Class Teachers - Teach One Reach OneChurches, mission fields and faith-based tutoring programs often have interesting beliefs about volunteers. One of the most prevalent is that any “warm body” will do – it’s the curriculum and program offerings as a whole that really matter. As a result, many of these groups trying to reach children and teens for God will allow untrained volunteers to work with kids. While we will address that in other blog posts, there is an even more disturbing result of this attitude.

At times, these ministries will place volunteers as teachers and mentors who are shall we say a bit “prickly”. They may not really want to be volunteers, but have been guilted to “fill a slot”. Worse yet, some may not even like kids or teens or have very negative attitudes towards them.

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How Teach One Reach One Can Help Your Ministry to Kids and Teens (Inc. Lots of Free Resources!)

How Teach One Reach One Can Help Your Ministry to Kids and Teens - Teach One Reach OneYou may have just stumbled upon Teach One Reach One or perhaps you attended one of our workshops, seminars or classes and are wondering what other resources we have to help you.

God has blessed this ministry and we are constantly adding to the resources designed to help Christian parents and the volunteers working with kids and teens in churches, faith-based tutoring programs and on the mission fields of the world.

Currently, these are just some of the resources you can find on our website or can attain by contacting us directly through the contact us feature on our websites.

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What Are Your Sunday School Students Thinking?

What Are Your Sunday School Students Thinking - Teach One Reach OneHave you ever wondered what the students in your Bible or faith based tutoring classes are thinking? Do you have any idea what they like or don’t like about your class? Do you know what they think would help them learn more (whether they are right or not)? Do you know how they feel about you as a person and your relationship with them? If you don’t, you are missing an important tool to reaching your students and pointing them towards God in the most effective ways possible.

Much of what we promote at Teach One Reach One is based on our interactions with students. We try out many of our materials with real students and ask for their feedback. We talk with them and find out what they feel they need from classes and teachers trying to help them learn about God. Why? Because even if what they think they want isn’t what they actually want or need to best learn, knowing how they think helps a teacher adjust lessons and activities so students will be the most receptive to them.

There is a great secular book on the market I would love for you to read. It is written by and about students in high school. Many of the co-authors are (or were by now) students in inner city schools, known for students acting out in ways like setting fires in bathrooms when they are bored or frustrated. Fires In The Bathroom by Kathleen Cushman and a number of teens is a great insight into the minds of students.

Even though it was written about secular high schools, I think you will find much of what these students share would be shared in similar ways by students of any age and in any type of school – including church Bible classes and faith based tutoring programs. The author is careful to present student thoughts exactly as they were given. At times, this means non-standard grammar or immature ideas and hopes, but the bulk of what these kids share is valid and important.

If you are not an educator, you may be a little distracted in the chapters that tend to focus on a specific subject or appear on the surface to be unrelated to what happens in Bible classes at church. I encourage you though to take a step back and substitute church for school, Bible class and Bible class teacher for their classes and teachers and the Bible as the subject being discussed. If you can do that, I believe you will start learning a lot of truths about how your students think and feel about you and your class.

Then take your research a step further and ask your students if they think the information the students share in the book applies to how they feel and think. As we have mentioned many times before, you will need to reassure them you want the truth and not what they think you want to hear from them. If they believe you, you may learn some important things you can do to really make a difference in the spiritual lives of your students. Just remember, as with the book, these are still young people who are growing and maturing. Not everything they want may be what is best for them, but even those things give you important clues to the best ways to get their attention and touch their hearts and minds – you may just have to adapt it a bit to make it helpful!

 

 

 

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