I’m a man, and I’ve been involved in teaching kids for over 25 years. While the kid’s ministry profession as a whole has seen an increase of men in leadership, it is still a mainly female dominated entity within the classroom. Why is it difficult for men to step up and fill a role within the classroom? Are there some tips we can use for engaging men in ministry?
How many of you have tried to get men engaged and heard some of the following statements? “That’s for girls.” “Teaching is boring.” “What if they don’t like me?” “What if I don’t like them?” “I’m not perfect.” Many men might respond with these or similar statements when we try and enlist them for our teaching teams.
Before we identify steps to encourage their participation, let’s first think about the qualities we want in a male teacher. We want men who are mature Christians, involved in the church, have a good biblical knowledge and are genuine in their faith. Once you identify men who fit the identity you are looking for, here are a few ways you might want to respond when approaching men to teach.
Men want to be engaged in something fun. Help men see that teaching isn’t boring, it can be fun. Men have a unique ability to take an activity that might not appeal to boys and give it a unique twist that will make it fun for boys too. Men want to do the unexpected. Assure the men that you enlist that they can bring their own unique style and creativity to teaching … within reason of course. Men want to be excited. Allow men to see the excitement on the faces of boys and girls when the men themselves get excited about teaching. Excitement is infectious. Men want to laugh. If your ministry area is one that encourages fun and laughter men will more actively engage in the work you have.
Men bring so many advantages to your kids’ ministry that they might not even realize. Men can help model for boys and girls what a man needs to be. Kids crave male attention and having men in classrooms helps that balance. Men can sometimes, just with their presence, bring order and discipline to a classroom. Men can also model strong male influence in single-parent homes. Interestingly, once you get a few committed men engaged in teaching in your ministry you might be surprised how many other men may just step up and take on the role of teaching in your kids ministry too.
Tim Pollard teaches 3rd graders at Tulip Grove Baptist Church. He’s passionate about helping kids dig deep into Scripture, which he pursues through his daily work as leader of the Explore the Bible: Kids team. Tim lives with his wife and daughters in Mount Juliet, TN.