by Rebekah Bullard
As a kid’s ministry leader, you are many things: visionary, a shepherd, a curator of environments, a professional event planner, a cheerleader for parents, an expert in safe practices, a communicator and a team player!
You have a BIG job!
Thankfully, one thing you DON’T have to be is a curriculum writer! You get to be the expert of your people and environments, while the innovators at Orange get to be the expert in resourcing you with the most effective tools possible to invest truth into the hearts of the next generation.
In my experience, the difference between HAVING the Orange tools and being great at USING the Orange tools hinges on intentional and practical preparation.
- Make Them Your Own And Get Organized – Identify a plan of action. Develop a process. Have a checklist. Breakdown the responsibilities of your team to prepare the tools. Be specific and time measurable. On our team, we have several staff and high capacity volunteers who own parts of the implementation. You shouldn’t do it all. Find people who are great at each area of preparation. I love to use this as an opportunity to utilize volunteers who may enjoy a more “behind the scenes” role in kid’s ministry.
- Train And Resource – Be strategic in equipping leaders on how to best use the curriculum tools in their groups. The tools are only as effective as the leaders who know how to use them. Unfortunately, all the time you spend on preparing the tools will be void if your leaders don’t feel confident to execute well. Empower Team Leads to guide new leaders through the resources. If possible, give new leaders an opportunity to see it modeled before you expect them to fly solo. Resource your leaders every week with only the tools they need on a consistent day—in advance. Constantly evaluate. Ask your leaders what they liked about the activities that week and what you can do to help make their experience better. Allow the voices of your most trusted leaders to help shape your preparation.
- Equip The Parents – Remember, the parents are the most important voices in the lives of the kids we reach. Be sure to find creative ways to connect what happens at church with what happens at home throughout the week. Use social media, videos, emails, websites and texts to give parents easy conversation starters in a way that already fits into the rhythm of their everyday lives.
Oftentimes, the difference between being good and being great starts with setting the table for excellence in the small ways to get the BIG results we are asking God for in the future.