Resources for making the most of your summer
Whether your regular scheduling continues or Sunday School is taking a break
Summer is already here in Chicago: with a vengeance! Kids break up for vacation much earlier here than we do in the UK (If you’re in a school there: keep going – you’re really close!) and then it got HOT – my happy place is now two inches in front of our air-con unit. By necessity Sunday School here stops because air-con is only available in one room of the building we meet in. It’s often a good idea to give regular teachers a break over the summer (think of it as a mini-sabbatical if you like) so they come back refreshed. Another driving force to pausing Sunday School are family holidays: attendance at church is most likely going to decrease among your regulars and be supplemented by visitors so some groups may be empty and others packed. There are two good solutions I know of for this (let me know in the comments if you have other ideas)
- Children join you in the service
- Run a Summer Special
I’ve talked a bit about having children in the service here but they need to be adequately equipped to be involved. For older children and teens: asking them to serve is a great idea (although that creates summertime scheduling fun!): see ideas for how they can do that here. They may also need help engaging with a sermon (although there is definitely an onus on the preacher to expand the application when children are in the service). There are several good sermon sheets and ideas on pinterest as well as my generic sheets for youth and children. There are also great colouring books available for littlies.
If you’re having a summer special you need a team of people who aren’t regular Sunday School teachers to take this on. Our pick-and-mix approach means what we have is easily adaptable and these series were planned for a wide age range of kids so you can have them all in the one group if necessary! Check out: 5 weeks of Philippians (add a review week if you need 6 in total); 8 weeks of Jesus is the new and better (pick the number of weeks you need); or 10 weeks of Jesus meets … from John’s gospel (again choose as many as you need: I’d recommend keeping Pilate, Peter and Mary Mag around as they explain the cross).
If you need something super easy, low prep, short and for small numbers: try using one of the God’s Story videos (Yes, I’ve recommended them before they’re so great!) along with songs and free drawing (crayons/pencils/pens and a blank sheet of paper) on that Bible story. Leave some time at the end to pray.
Enjoy summer y’all!