Archive | Mentoring

Teaching the Bible to Kids and Teens with Special Needs

Teaching the Bible to Kids and Teens With Special Needs - Teach One Reach OneI recently read the book No Greatness without Goodness by Randy Lewis. In it, Lewis tells the story of how he convinced Walgreens to employee large numbers of people with special needs, while also giving them regular salaries and benefits. (If you have a child with special needs or work with children who have special needs, I think you will find it to be extremely encouraging.)

Here is my most important take away from the book. I believe the church needs to revolutionize the way we teach kids and teens with special needs in Bible classes. Lewis and his team took the attitude that failure was not an option. If regular methods to motivate employees or have them complete a task weren’t working, they found a way to make it work.

So many times in churches we unknowingly communicate the message that children and teens with special needs are somehow “less than”. We discourage parents from bringing them to Bible class. We give the children coloring sheets, while other students are engaged in more hands-on, meaningful activities. We don’t ask them questions. We don’t ask parents how to help them learn. We don’t ask the child with special needs what he or she needs to make learning easier. We assume they don’t want to become a Christian and rarely even bring up or study baptism with them. We may even look the other way or ignore the children and their families. On rare occasions, families have even been asked to find somewhere else to worship.

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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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Must Read for Christians Working With Urban Youth

Must Read for Christians Working With Urban Youth - Teach One Reach OneMany Christians have great hearts. They love people, especially young people. They want to point them to Christ and make a positive difference in their lives. They want to make a positive impact on urban environments that are killing our young people or emotionally breaking those who manage to survive.

Often these well meaning Christians head into urban environments with absolutely no real information about what life can be like. Or their perceptions are based on what they have seen on the evening news or some television drama. In reality, life can be just as different from one urban child to the next as it is from one suburban child to the next. Unfortunately though, not knowing some of the basic issues in urban life can mean volunteers waste a lot of unnecessary time and money through trial and error. They can spend way too much time reinventing the wheel. They can even make things much worse for the children they are trying to help by making “rookie” mistakes.

Fist, Stick, Knife, Gun by Geoffrey Canada should be a must read for anyone wanting to volunteer or work with kids and teens in an urban environment. Canada runs a program in Harlem (NYC), that from everything I can read is as much of a success story as one can hope for in one of the toughest areas in America. In fact, many credit his program with creating a rejuvenation of about a 100 block area in that part of Manhattan.

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Fun Ways to Encourage Kids and Teens to Pray Independently

Fun Ways to Encourage Independent Students Prayer - Teach One Reach One

Prayer Piñata

There are so many things you want to do in the short amount of time you are given to teach your students during Bible class. You feel rushed and may even forget to have the simplest of class prayers. How much time do you have to devote to helping your students develop an independent prayer life? Yet praying is one of the most important and helpful things a Christian can do.

You may be tempted to give an occasional lecture or even a lesson on prayer. The reality though is that for many of your students, the point of the lesson will be forgotten as soon as they leave the building. What if you could send something fun home to remind them to pray every time they saw it? Could those little reminders encourage them to pray independently and more frequently than they do currently?

There is no scientific study to prove it will help, but I know often a visual reminder will help me remember to do something I wanted to do. Otherwise my intentions of establishing a new spiritual habit can get lost in the craziness of real life. Here are a few of my favorite prayer reminders:

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Conquering Cliques in Bible Classes for Kids and Teens

Conquering Cliques in Bible Classes for Kids and Teens- Teach One Reach OneOften when I speak with families who are changing congregations, the reason given is their children didn’t feel accepted by the other kids. It wasn’t mean behavior usually, but just a feeling the children had that they would never be considered a part of the group. If they are teens, the word often used is cliques.

The reality is cliques and friendships are often based on having similar tastes, interests, beliefs or even personalities. It is natural for young people to feel more comfortable with people who are basically just like them. The problems start when these friend groups exclude others on a regular basis and do things that make those not in their group feel “less than”.

It’s not realistic to expect children with absolutely nothing in common to be best friends. It can happen, but it’s rare. “Outlawing” cliques at church usually doesn’t work well – especially with teens. So what can you do to make every child or teen feel welcome and accepted in your classroom? Here are some things you can do that may help:

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