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Building a ministry that’s based on “participation” rather than “observation” is one of the most effective ways to engage kids and lead them towards becoming Spirit-empowered disciples. As children’s ministry leaders, learning how to translate that idea into practical steps is critical when it comes to developing this kind of participation strategy in our ministry.
To start the road of group participation, steer away from the idea of busy activities. Here’s how it typically works: You find a fun game on the Internet or Pinterest and wonder if it will work at church. It might have nothing to do with the theme or lesson but it looks like a fun game. Before you say yes, ask if it is really participation or just another “busy activity.”
Many years ago while writing “Focus On Children,” my research included the study of educational theory and practice. Writers agreed, although percentages varied, that children retain little of what they hear, more of what they hear and see, and much more of what they hear, see, and do. From that time until now, I have incorporated strong illustration and involvement components in every lesson.