Children’s Talks - What We’re Aiming At

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Unashamed Workman posted a while ago some helpful thoughts on children's talks following a discussion within his church. There are some valuable comments so I have posted them below:
So children’s talks should be…
1. Scriptural - This may be the obvious point but our goal is to teach God’s Word. Even if we only teach one verse at a time, every children’s talk should refer directly to the bible.
2. Stimulating - The children’s talk should be interesting (please note: for the children). This doesn’t mean that we resort to endless gimmicks but it does require some creativity on our part about how to grab the children’s attention. A good test of how the talk is going is simple: are the children ‘engaged’?
3. Short - The children’s talk is nothing more nor less than a thought to take away and ponder. The children’s talk is not extensive bible teaching for children. That happens in Junior Church. It is rather a brief children’s focus which should be short, sharp and punchy. Really, each kids talk should be one significant idea and no more. Once that thought has been made clear, its time to sing!
4. Simple - Sentences should be short. Big words should be avoided or at least explained. Children at the lower end of the age spectrum (5-7) should ‘get it.’ This doesn’t mean that concepts should be dummed down (‘no difficult subjects’) but rather that what is said will be pitched at the children’s level.
Is there anything else you would want to add?

2 comments:

Hi Chris

I've got one thought and one question.

The thought or comment was that the children's talk should not be seen in isolation from the rest of the service. Whether that means that it should relate to what the adults will be doing later on in the service, or be an introduction to what the children will be doing later on, is a question that's up for discussion - but I like the idea of a children's talk which somehow fits in with something else, rather than another random element in the service.

The question relates to the age at which we pitch what we say - the youngest child, or at some midpoint in the age of the children and young people?

Big D said...
September 26, 2007 10:21 am  

Hi Big D

I agree with your thought, I think it is really important that it is another piece in the jigsaw that is the service. Personally I think it is more helpful for it to link with what the young people will be doing, so that it can give a starting point for conversations over the lunch table for families.

With regards to age I think that you need to bear in mind the lowest denominator (be that age and/or level of knowledge and faith) but it also has to bear in mind the context. At the moment for our Sunday services we are mainly thinking about a bunch of 12-13 year olds who are mainly from a non-Church background and prioritising them over our smaller group of 6-9 year olds.

Hope those thoughts help,

Chris

Chris said...
September 30, 2007 4:24 pm  

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