The best game I liked to play at recess when I was a kid, by far, was Tag. We all still play Tag every weekend, but in a little bit different way. We play tag with our parents, grandparents or families as they bring their kids into our ministries. We know that families spend more time with the children than we do, but that does not mean we do not have to play.
They attend church and drop off their children and say, “Tag, you’re it.” We spend one to two hours a week in programming with them and a few events a year. At the end of those events we say, “Tag, you’re it.” We intentionally plan all year how we will tell each child about Jesus in the approximate 40 hours we will have them.
How can we help families continue faith discussions with their children, when we “tag” them? Here are a few ideas as you pass the baton:
1. Today’s power of Social Media is a great tool to help parents.
Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest are just a few ideas where to post. Be creative! On Mondays, post an overview video from the weekend. Tuesday, give an extra craft idea or science experiment. Wednesday, post a scripture and challenge question from the lesson. Thursday, ask an open-ended question for them to answer about the lesson. Friday, tell the families how to prepare for the upcoming weekend lesson.
2. Email is still a way to communicate.
We have experienced that if we send a long email most parents do not read it. Why? As a parent I receive emails in several different directions each day. The school, sports team, child’s school teacher, birthday invitation, and community events. How do we get families to read our important emails? However, they will watch an email with a video in it that is less than 2 minutes. Instead of a long informational email that will not be read, make a fun video of the information.
3. Sermon notes for kids are a great way to partner with families.
You can look online or purchase a download for activities, and on the other side write a version of notes about the sermon for the families to share over dinner as a devotion. One side the kids can use as activities during church and the other side use at home for a devotion as a family.
4. Create a take-home folder for each child.
Handouts each week from small groups or Sunday school get thrown away even before they get home most of the time. We created a new method that is working. We printed a whole quarter’s worth of handouts and put in a folder for each child. We have continued to add extra items to this folder. We have added extra ideas for memorization, missionary updates, helps for parents, Kid’s Bible commentaries. If we have new people we give them a folder. We have a page in the front for points to earn and if they bring back the signed folder they can receive a prize. Parent’s enjoy the information being given in folder at one time instead of each week. We still make stickers for the kids when there is an important event happening as a reminder. Kids love stickers.
5. Quarterly make an object lesson for families to do at home.
At Easter, send home materials for them to make an Easter Garden with a tomb and a devotion. Around Christmas, give them supplies to make a birthday cake for Jesus. Let’s help our families have fun and make memories!