Our daughter’s kindergarten teacher in public school was one of those rare master teachers. Her students and their parents absolutely adored her. When the school had a charity auction, one of the items getting the highest bids was the chance for a child to have ice cream with her outside of school. It was probably the world’s most expensive ice cream cone!
There were a million things that made her a master teacher, but one of her practices would be easy for Bible class teachers to incorporate. Mrs. S took pictures all year long. Tons and tons of photos. Of every child doing everything imaginable. At the end of the school year, she gave each child a small photo album filled with pictures of them from the year. Those albums are a treasure and I would imagine not one of them has ever been thrown away.
There are other ways to do the same thing as a way of connecting with your Bible students and their parents. While students are completing the activity for the lesson, snap a photo of each child working. After class, text the photo to the parents, adding a line or two about what you learned in class and something positive about their child.
If you are like me and tend to get so engrossed in teaching that you forget to take pictures, ask someone else to be the class photographer. This is also a great way to mentor teens and other future teachers as they will hear the Bible lesson and observe you teach as they perform their duties as class photographer.
To avoid any issues about privacy, have parents sign a photo release form at the beginning of the year. You can also limit photos to one child per image, but you will miss a lot of cute photos that way. Just make sure you keep your promise, if you decide to promise parents in advance that you will send photos.
Taking a few photos and sharing them with parents can build relationships with parents, encourage their engagement with your lessons and create memories that will last a lifetime. With phones having built in cameras, you don’t even have to remember your camera!