Aim to come up with creative ways to help kids stay focused and be excited about what you have to say.
Also remember to WAIT until you have kid’s attention.
Do not speak while kids are chatting.
- Call ‘n Response… Aim: leader calls out short phrase, kids call back a short response. Example: Leader calls… Kids, kids, kids. Kids respond… Yes, yes, yes.
If possible, work out a call and response that is the big idea of the lesson or a series of lesson.
Example for Exodus: Leader calls, “God saves us.” Kids respond, “Before we serve him.”
Example for Luke 9-12: Leader calls, “Follow Jesus.” Kids respond, “Whatever the cost.”
Example for series on the power of the cross: Leader calls, “We broke it.” Kids respond, “God fixed it.”
Remind kids that once they say their part it is time to listen to the leader out the front.
- Rhythm clap… clap a beat that children repeat. Repeat, this time clapping a different beat. Continue until you have their attention.
- Whisper instructions… lower your voice so that kids quieten down to hear (note: be aware of children with hearing difficulties).
- Put your hand up… and wait until all children have their hand up and you have their attention.
- If you can hear my voice clap once… those who have heard will clap once. Repeat: If you can hear my voice clap three times… repeat, varying the number of claps, until you have their attention.
- If you can hear my voice put your finger on your nose… wait till kids have stopped talking and put their fingers on their nose. Or, if you can hear my voice hold your ears… wait till kids have stopped talking and are holding both ears.
- Strike a listening pose… teach kids that whenever a leader calls, “strike a listening pose” they need to get into a creative pose that shows they are listening.
- Music… play a short piece of music to get kids attention during chaotic activities.
- Series of quick actions…
Hands in the air, shake your hands, roll your hands, hands in the lap.
Look up, look down, look right, look left, look at me.