On a recent visit to Woodstock City Church in Atlanta, I studied what they use for Small Groups. These bins can be found at IKEA, but at the time of this post, they are also available at Michaels.
On a recent visit to Woodstock City Church, I noticed their signs. There were 2 things that I noticed. I noticed what signs they had displayed, and what signs they didn’t have displayed.
I was so impressed to see what Woodstock City Church does to celebrate birthdays for kids. The kids look forward to their Birthday all year long so that they can visit the Birthday Cart. The Birthday Cart is pretty exciting, but it doesn’t compare to the PERSON who is at the Birthday Cart. I did not find out this person’s name, but he was amazing as he celebrated each child and their birthday.
We are just getting ready to launch a new campus. We have a smaller space available for our kids ministry rooms, but we still wanted to make it fun and kid friendly. So, we decided to make a photo wall down our kids hallway. The idea can from a photo I saw on worshipfacilities.com . Here’s what we did to make it.
When people sign up to volunteer in our Kids Rooms, we want to equip them with all the info they need to get started, and do their job well. It can be a little overwhelming for a new volunteer to try to remember everything, so we created some booklets for each room that give them the basics to get started.
I finally finished a project that I have been working on for a few weeks. I wanted to create a way for kids and parents to say thank you to the volunteers who help on Sunday mornings. I created a DIY Mailbox, where kids can mail a thank you card. We set up tables in an open area where parents and kids could work on making a card together. Then, once they finished making their card, they could mail it in the mailbox. At the end of the month, we will distribute all the thank you cards to the volunteers. I printed off a list of all the volunteers for each room, so parents could find the names of the volunteers if they need them. If you want to create your own DIY Mailbox, this is how you can do it:
Recently we hosted a Princess Party at our church. We had over 800 people attend the event. 60% of people were not regular church attenders. We received a lot of positive feedback after the event about how much people enjoyed coming to the event. Here are some of the things we included at the Princess Party:
Sometimes the number of things that need to be done in Kids Ministry can be overwhelming. How do you balance the urgent things with things that should be a priority? So many times the urgent can take a lot of our time, but they are not necessarily things that are a priority. A Kids Ministry To Do List might be just the thing you are looking for. It’s not just any to do list. It’s specifically designed with things in mind that are important for a Kids Ministry Leader.
When I was visiting The Grove Community Church in Riverside, California, I saw a kids church reward system that they used to help motivate kids to listen & participate. They also used this system to encourage families to work on the family activity page together, and to return it the following week.
Babies need to be well cared for if you are going to have an AWESOME nursery. You need to find out information that is important to know while the baby is in your care. Can they sit unsupported? Do they have a bottle or sippy cup? It’s important to get this information from parents before they leave their child in your care. A nursery checklist can be an easy way to collect the information you need from parents.
Have you been to Disney World in the last few years? If you are celebrating a special occasion you can get a button that displays what you are celebrating for FREE! Then as you walk around the parks and hotel all the staff congratulate you on your special occasion. I’m sure any child in your church would love it if all the volunteers said, “Happy Birthday” to them on their birthday, or “welcome” on their first Sunday. A button maker allows you to make buttons for any occasion or event. You could even promote upcoming events by making buttons for volunteers or kids to wear. Put your logo on them and give them out as prizes. If kids can say their Bible verse, then they can get a special Bible Verse Button. Here are some ways you could use buttons:
Does your church have a clear plan for emergencies? Crossroads Church does. In fact, it’s so clear, that they have a Safety Manual displayed in each Kids Room. Each Manual is custom made with instructions for that specific room. The staff was kind enough to give me permission to share their Safety Manual on my blog with pictures for everyone to see. Hopefully it will inspire you to make a plan for emergencies that is clear for your volunteers.
Keeping vision in front of volunteers is one of the most important things you will do as a Kids Ministry Leader. Reminding people over and over of why they do what they do. On my most recent trip to Crossroads Church in Cincinnati, I was reminded of something that they do to keep the vision in front of their volunteers. Many of their kids ministry rooms have a picture wall. The pictures are specific to the ministry that happens in that room.
Crossroads has a room for kids with special needs. This room is available for children who would benefit from a quieter space. Displayed on the wall in this room was a sign language poster. Many children are able to communicate through sign language, and this poster was a great tool for volunteers who many not use sign language on a regular basis.
Every time I go to Walt Disney World I notice how welcome they make you feel. Everything from greeting you when you arrive at Magical Express at the airport, to the coach bus, to arriving at the resort, to arriving at the parks. They do a great job of making you feel welcome. But one thing I didn’t expect was for them to be just as intentional to say Thank you when we left. Not only do they do a great job of welcoming you when you arrive, they are intentional about saying goodbye.
Libraries are great places to find ideas for kids. Not only do they have books about all kinds of things for kids, but their environments are often creative spaces for kids to use their imagination. I went to my local library this past week and saw this Lego Wall when I was there. Of course I took a pic & studied it to see how they made it. After purchasing a few supplies, we were able to create our own lego wall.
Preschoolers love to make crafts, color & do sticker art. However, sometimes when it is time for them to go home, the artwork often gets left on the classroom table and doesn’t make it home to be displayed on the family fridge. By creating a clothesline for crafts, we helped to improve this challenge.