Expect Classes to Reproduce! Those who sow in tears will reap with shouts of joy. Though one goes along weeping, carrying the bag of seed, he will surely come back with shouts of joy, carrying his sheaves. Psalm 126:5-6
Ideas abound about how a Sunday School, a Kids Ministry, a church, or the larger Kingdom of God grows. All of these theories can be reduced to this most basic principle: START NEW UNITS!
It’s just a fact… if you want more folks, start more Bible study units. It’s been said that for every new unit that you start, you’ll average an increase of around 10. Makes sense to me… if we want to grow our Preschool and Children’s ministries, we’ll be about the business of starting new Bible study units in our Kids ministry! Here are a couple of questions that always come up when I suggest starting new classes:
1. When is it time to create a new Bible study unit? A clear indication is when your room is full. A good recommendation of class room size is around 24 kids (for 1-6th graders). You can be relatively sure that you will not consistently maintain more than around 80% of the rooms capacity. So, if you have rooms that are knocking on “full” now is the time to consider reproducing!
2. Where will I get new workers?My experiences tell me that the number one reason why we don’t start new units is because we don’t have the leadership in place to staff the classes we have, much less new classes. Enlistment and recruiting is a major problem in our churches. I’ve talked some in the past about enlistment, and I’d encourage you to go back and read through some of those thoughts (click here) but let me share an additional idea that you might consider, the apprentice.
The TV reality show, The Apprentice has never really been all that interesting to me. (I can look in the mirror at bad hair.) But, I do like the concept and how it can be applied to Kids ministry leadership. We need to be taking eager volunteers under our wings and sharing with them our passion for Kids ministry and Sunday School. Connecting potential teacher with seasoned experts just makes sense and it equips them to take the leading role in the new units we need to create. Many times the apprentice method not only equips someone for leadership, it weeds out those who don’t really need to be there in the first place. Consider growing your leadership pool by using apprentices… it really does works.
The past couple weeks I’ve been at Lifeway’s two conference centers (Ridgecrest, NC and Glorieta, NM) with some of my favorite people, Sunday School leaders. Each summer Lifeway sponsors what is called “Sunday School Week” at both locations. These events are designed for teachers to come and “grow” their talent as teachers. It’s such a neat opportunity to be with friends (new and old) who desire to be even better at the work God has called them to… consider joining us next summer. Check out our Leadership Training Opportunities.