Help!! Sunday School Participation

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by RTB, Mar 19, 2003.

  1. RTB

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    After much praying and talking to my pastor, I accepted the position of Young Adult Sunday School Teacher at my church. This was a new class, in fact I am its first teacher. My request for help!!, is for more experienced teachers on this Board to help me with their experience in getting young people involved and interested. I present the scripture not only from a doctinally sound basis but also with examples of how those lessons can be applied to situations we experience in life. I feel a great need to teach the Word and to help these young people catch on fire for the Lord. Any suggestions or successful strategies y'all could share would be greatly appreciated.

    In Christ

    Ronnie
     
  2. Terry_Herrington

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  3. Sherrie

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    Don't lecture! Let them help in reading the scripture. Ask questions that lead to answers by others. Let the class be an involved class. Don't just read the Sunday lesson as blah blah be....but allow everyone to partake in the lesson. Say from the very beginning there will be involvement.

    Ask questions by name. example:

    Now Diane why do you think they did blah blah? Or Bobby why do you think God did that? Linda why don't you read the first 3 verses in our lesson, and then class lets talk about it.

    Just some things that have worked for me.

    Sherrie
     
  4. atestring

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    Young adults are a unique breed. They do not have to go to church because their parents make them.
    This is good in the sense that they show up because they want to be there. If they are fed the Word of God and it is mixed with faith as you teach and there is a dependence on the Holy Spirit they will continue to come back.
    This is an awesome responsibility. I commend you for taking on the challenge
     
  5. Thankful

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    Sherrie has some very good points. Let them participate, but other than calling on them to read the scripture by name, I don't think it is good to ask questions and put a person on the spot by calling them by name. Ask questions, but let them volunteer the answers.

    Many people attending Sunday School and Bible Study are there to learn and they may not have an answer to the question and are embarrassed to not know the answer or have an opinion. Sometimes they have not had time to study the lesson. If no one volunteers the answer, then the teacher can answer or give suggestions.

    I think Terry is right, love them and make them feel comfortable.
     
  6. Pete

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    G'day RTB [​IMG]

    Sounds like you have worked out the important part there, sound doctrine and examples to apply teaching [​IMG]

    Wether I have been (supposedly ;) ) in charge of a Sunday school class of 10yr olds, or a young peoples Bible study, I have always approached it as being a mate of the class, not just a teacher. There are 166-167 hours left in a week after 1 or 2 are taken out on Sunday mornings.

    If a question comes up, answer it. If have to ditch the lesson for the day to answer a question then go for it, use the prepared material next week. Take ideas off the class. At young peoples Bible study at old Church one young bloke had questions about the Lord's second coming, death, Heaven, hell, judgement, etc, so I did a 3 week series on topics to cover the questions.

    If they volunteer for anything, go for it. At Sunday school the other week one of the girls wanted to read the lesson. I said ok and before you know it we had 3 trainee Sunday school teachers that morning [​IMG]

    There will be good days and bad days. Just remember Romans 8:28 and 1 Thessalonians 5:17 [​IMG]

    May God bless you in this ministry [​IMG]

    Pete
     
  7. Ed Edwards

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    I taught my first Sunday School class 46 years
    ago. I've been teaching Sunday School
    (save when i was a Sunday School Director for
    three years) pretty much for the past 32 years.

    The 9-year-olds Sunday School teacher was
    a public school teacher. After the end of
    school in May, he moved. I was 13-years-old
    and taught the 9-year-olds for the summer.

    Father God, i lift up Brother RTB for a
    rememberance. Please be with him as he
    takes on this new ministry. God bless
    Brother RTB in a special way
    and his family and his ministry
    starting this very day. Amen.
     
  8. Thankful

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    Sherrie, Sherrie, Sherrie :rolleyes:

    Surely, ye jest [​IMG]

    You have 4208 posts and I have 1383 [​IMG] [​IMG]


    When I get to a topic first, then you can disagree with me :D

    Since you have made a statement and did not ask a question, I will not comment further.
     
  9. Rosa

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    I have only taught Sunday School in two different age levels. My experiance is limited to two years.

    I have found that class room participation is what makes the class click wheather it is 7-8th graders or the Womens Class.

    Some Sunday Mornings I do get preoccupied people that don't want to say a word. And I usually start drawing on the board to illustrate what the lesson is about. That usually picks up conversation because I ask others to draw also.

    I try to avoid lecturing. I always ask someone else to read the scriptures. If there is three different sections, I have three different people read. You do have to be a bit careful because some people will not, or are not capable of, reading aloud. But most people like to participate at some level. New people are the hardest so you must make a special effort to inclued them in the discussion.

    Also, be sure to be in class a long time before the class starts. That way you can visit with people as the come in and that gives them an opportunity to express conserns. It also helps people feel that they belong when there is some visitation beforehand.
     
  10. Sherrie

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    Rosa...I so do agree! Sounds like you have a very nice class. I know i am always talking to people who go to Sunday School, and most wiill say they like the class when there is participation. And the ones who have difficulty in reading, they will make an excuse not to read, such as can't see well. But they love to answer questions.

    Then I have been talking lately to a lot of people who aren't going to Sunday School, and they say its because its boring. Same issues all the time. I know that Sunday School shouldn't enterain a person, But when its not mandatory to go, why go if its so boring. That has been a lot of the reason. So it does help when you can involve everyone.

    Even my 7th and 8th grade people love to read the lesson, read the Bible scripture, and hurry and give the answers. Sometimes I have to say to a couple of them, slow down and let someone else answer. tee-hee!

    Sherrie
     
  11. Gina B

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    RTB, I'm not a ya teacher, but I can tell you which teachers have been most effective and why.

    One was excellent. He placed emphasis on worship and on teaching us to be witnesses, to be the ones most active in the church and leaders in getting things going. We learned different ways of presenting the gospel story, and he encouraged us to find situations where we would be able to do so. He also taught us how to be examples for our teens in the church and our own children, and often brought in lessons on family, how to keep our marriages together and how to be good partners.
    We learned, we shared ideas, we all participated in the discussions, but he didn't let people take over the discussions, although he never discounted a single persons ideas.

    On to a not-so-great teacher. He wanted to teach, but I think he thought he was still teaching kindergarten kids, and the people in the class reacted by acting like kindergarten kids. They talked, joked, he didn't have leadership skills to direct the class in the right way so that this wouldn't happen. The result? Nobody was growing, nobody was learning much of anything.

    A good lesson will be contain enough that new Christians can learn, but go into enough depth that people who have grown more can also learn new things too.

    Look at the class, get an idea of where everyone is in their lives, and target a few things that need to be worked on overall. As in, if you see marriages are dissolving, focus more on teaching biblical principles that make strong families, if the majority lacks basic knowledge of why they believe what they do, focus more on that. Don't be afraid to start out by passing out a questionairre they can all answer anonymously so you can get an idea of where everyone is, and have them put down ideas for what they think would be helpful.

    Gina
     
  12. RTB

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    Thank y'all for your replies and words of prayer and encouragement. I had an idea of the difficulties that I would be presented with when this class started but I had no idea how frustrating it can be to try and get through to young people who's minds and hearts are so clouded by the world. Persistance, prayer and following the Holy Spirits guidance will break down any barrier. Thank y'all, and keep not only my students but all young people in your prayers, if we try, we can remember how difficult this time of their lives can be.

    In Christ

    Ronnie
     
  13. Dr. Bob

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    Good points. Appreciate the various opinions and experiences. No one is ATTACKING another when they simply share a different view, for goodness sake!

    No one's view alone is "THE" only way; iron sharpens iron. I for one use questions almost exclusively in teaching Adults - allowing for the free flow of discussion and subsequent questions.

    Very seldom have to call a "name" - but these are more mature adults, not young adults as in this thread.
     
  14. baptistteacher

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    Lots of good suggestions here. I would seldom ask a question of someone by name, usually leaving it open for whoever to join in. Encourage more than one person to respond.

    Also, try "Brainstorming." Last week we were having a missions lesson, and I asked "If I were a missionary in Haiti, Romainia, or the Phillipines, how would I want you to pray for me?" We filled up a white-board with responses -- Health, safety, souls being saved, children's education, finances, government permits, etc. Now they know better than to just pray "God, bless the missionairies." [​IMG]

    For a good source of questions, try the "Seredipity Study Bible for Groups" - although it is NIV and we use KJV, I can write out the questions in my teaching notes. It has thought-questions for the whole Bible. Sometimes if I don't use the questions there, they will give me ideas for other questions.
     
  15. baptistteacher

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    Also try giving them some simple "homework" from time to time.
    We are having a few lessons on Islam, and how to reach these people with the Gospel. Because this is a complex subject, I gave a few pages of material for them to read so that they could come to class with some idea of what we were talking about. Makes a big difference.
    -----
    I have a group that knows their Bible well, and most of my lessons are geared for these Peter's and Paul's. But you never when a Phillipian jailer or a Samaritan woman will show up. This happened some time back, and I was impressed with how the regulars helped me scale down the lesson for this person. It is neat to see them take the lead in such matters. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  16. Pete

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    Pastor is coming out on Thursday hopefully. I am going to try and twist his arm and have Sunday school in Church this week.

    Lesson is in two parts. Part 1 looks at what Judas, Pilate's wife, Pilate, thief on cross, Roman guard at cross said about Jesus. Intermission involves a 1.2kg chocolate egg. Part 2 is looking at how many people saw Jesus alive after resurrection [​IMG]

    I am not a great fan of the "doing things this way because this is the way we have always done them so this is the way we do them world without end Amen" thing [​IMG]

    Pete
     
  17. Thankful

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    Pete, be sure to encourage your class to go hear the Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma when they come to Australia. [​IMG]

    Keep up the good work and may the Lord Bless your ministry to your Sunday School Class.
     
  18. Pete

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    G'day Thankful [​IMG] I heard a bit of Oklahomans CD at Church on Sunday night, sounded great the part I heard. Will have to try and borrow it to give it a good listen. I am starting to think I might try and get to their night in Newcastle [​IMG] A group of 9 or so will be at our Church that morning from memory [​IMG]

    As if having the privilege of teaching Sunday school is not a great enough blessing to start with, God continually adds to that [​IMG]

    Pete
     
  19. christfollower55

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    Sunday school is one of the most important parts of the morning service. It is where we can learn more about the bible and our Lord. You get more 1 on 1 help so to speak in sunday school then you do in regular church. Don't misunderstand me i'm not saying that sunday school takes the place of preaching it dosn't, but i enjoy going to sunday school and i also enjoy getting the oppurtunity to teach every once in a while. I love being able to share the Word of God with others. I love the feeling of God using me to spread His Word!

    GOD BLESS AMERICA [​IMG]
     

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