DIY Trunk-or-Treat Trophies

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Do you host an annual Trunk-or-Treat at your church? Here's a fun and easy way to make trophies for the winners! (And if you're looking to shake things up and try a new event, here are 5 unique fall family events!)[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download printable instructions here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F08%2FDIY-Trunk-or-Treat-Trophies-DKM.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text]Supplies needed: Wooden Plaques Gold, Silver, and Bronze Spray Paint Paint Pen or Scrapbook Letter stickers/ ModPodge Large Hot Wheels Cars (approximately 5 inches in length) Super Glue E6000 Glue Instructions: Super glue the wheels of your hot wheels cars to the car itself so they do not roll. Super glue the doors of the hot wheels car shut. ...

5 Unique Fall Family Events

Fall is a great season to reconnect with families! Whether you're connecting with families in-person, digitally, or at a distance, here are some of our favorite and most creative fall family events: Reverse Trick or Treating - Every kid is familiar with trick-or-treating. You dress up, walk to a neighbor’s house, ring the doorbell, say “Trick or Treat!” and you get free candy! But what if you could REVERSE this fall activity and utilize it as a community outreach and family service project? In this Fall outreach event, instead of going door-to-door asking for candy, families go door-to-door to hand out candy and collect donations for a local charity! Read more about how this works here and download a full guide to host your own Reverse Trick or Treating Event here. Glow Night - Whether your church recognizes Halloween or not, your...

Jump into Fall: Fall Resources for your KidMin

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Are you ready to jump into the fall season in your ministry? Here are our favorite resources for making the fall season unbe-leaf-able for the families you serve![/vc_column_text][vc_toggle title="New for 2021"]Click on each image below to learn more about that resource. [/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title="Fall Events"]Click on each image below to learn more about that resource. [/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title="Family Resources for Fall"]Click on each image below to learn more about that resource. [/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title="Fall Fun"]Click on each image below to learn more about that resource. [/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title="Thanksgiving Resources (For Those Really Planning Ahead!)"]Click on each image below to...

4 Things Disney Prioritizes that KidMin Leaders Should Too

My family and I recently spent a week at the beach and decided to make a 1-day trip to Disney World while we were there. So we packed up all the snacks and diapers and spent a day at Magic Kingdom with our 1.5-year-old. It was a blast! While we were riding Dumbo, waving to Winnie the Pooh, and eating Dole whip, I noticed a few of Disney's priorities that are good reminders for children's ministry leaders too:  Prioritize kids. This one seems obvious, but it's a good reminder. Disney World prioritizes kids, especially in kid-specific areas of the parks and around kid-specific rides. There are designated stroller parking zones throughout the park to make it easy for families to leave their belongings in a safe place while riding. These stroller parking zones take up space and may be inconvenient to maintain, but they enhance the guest experience...

September Holidays For Fun Social Media Posts

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Use this list to make fun and engaging posts for your children's ministry social media accounts in September! Remember, you want your social media to be more than just a bulletin board. Ask questions relating to some of the holidays: For National Wildlife Day, ask your families what wild animal they would be! Encourage them to tag a friend: For Grandparents' Day, encourage them to tag the grandparents in their lives in an encouraging post![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download a printable version of the September Holidays Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F08%2FDKM-September-Holidays-List-Freebie.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text] September 2021 Holidays: 4 - National Wildlife Day 6 - National Read a Book Day 6 - Labor Day 11 -...

The Biggest Social Media Mistake KidMin Leaders Make

There's one mistake I often see ministry leaders make when it comes to their ministry social media accounts: They use social media as a digital bulletin board. If your social media accounts are just posts of reminders or upcoming events, you are missing out on a great opportunity to connect with your people. Instead of using your social media as an announcement monologue, change your posting approach to foster conversation and engagement instead. Use the 80/20 rule - let 80% of what you post be about your people, not you, so about things that serve, inspire, engage, encourage, or equip your parents and families, rather than asking them to attend something or go somewhere. Then 20% of your posts can be service times, event invites, and other reminders. One way to help with this ratio is to remember 6 social media content buckets: ...

Family Survey Printable

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]One of the best ways to grow a flourishing family ministry is to connect with families in your church - to understand their needs and get to know them. That's why this week's freebie is a family survey printable you can share with your families to learn more about them and their preferences![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Family Survey Here" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F08%2FDKM-Family-Survey.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text]If you're looking for a bigger list of feedback and survey questions or want to create your own from scratch, download our free feedback questions list here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="57668" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link"...

5 Ways to Make Parents Ignore Your Parent Resource Center

I've seen a lot of posts in children's ministry groups lately about parent resource centers and how to provide a place for parents to pick up devotionals, books, ideas, and more. Parent Resource Centers (or corners or stations or walls or whatever you want to call it) are a great idea and an excellent way to partner with parents and equip them to be the primary disciplers of their kids. But if you stock these hubs with the wrong kind of resources, they can sit dormant and go unused. If you want to make your families ignore your parent resources, do these 5 things... Make resources (and finding them) complicated. Our brains are hard-wired to choose the path of least resistance, and busy parents are no different. If your at-home devotionals and resources are too complicated and difficult to understand or pull off, parents may pick up a copy the...

4 Classroom Management Tips For Your Volunteers

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Classroom Management will make or break your volunteers' experience teaching and your kids' experience learning. Share these simple and quick best practices for classroom management with your volunteers to help them serve and lead well. Sharing simple strategies and techniques like these with your team helps them enjoy leading/serving in your ministry (which means they'll stick around longer) and helps kids enjoy learning about Jesus (always a win).[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download a Printable Version Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F07%2FDKM-Classroom-Management-Tips-Tricks-for-Volunteers.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text] Be early. Be prepared - The first one to arrive is the one in charge. Be sure that you are the first one in the...

Top 5 Reasons Volunteer Training is Important

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]As you gear up for your annual fall volunteer training, it's important to remember why you do it! It keeps volunteers in-the-know. Your annual training is the best place to connect with your volunteers and communicate updated policies, new expectations, and to make sure they're prepared to serve your kids. It keeps your volunteers and your kids safe. By making sure that everyone is on the same page with policies and procedures, you can better prevent any safety issues.  You can celebrate what God has done this year and look forward to what He has in store next. When your whole team dreams and prays together, big things happen in little lives! Volunteers can make connections with other volunteers. This helps remind them that they're not alone in ministering to kids, and it puts faces to names they...

Separate the Beans: Back-to-School Object Lesson

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Use this hands-on object lesson to show kids that we can’t separate our spiritual lives from our school lives (or any other part of our lives). It's a great object lesson for your back-to-school season, and it encourages kids to think about including God in their everyday lives.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download a Printable Version Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F07%2FDKM-Separate-the-Beans-Back-to-School-Object-Lesson.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text]Supplies: Two bowls, two different colors of beans, two different colors of sand (or salt and pepper), some powdered drink mix (or a packet of Kool-Aid, or Splenda), a Cup of water, a spoon Details: Set out two bowls with different colored beans in each bowl (you can also do this...

6 Promotion Sunday Themes

Promotion Sunday is one of my favorite days of the whole year! It always has such a great energy as kids are excited to move up into a new class. We host ours right before school starts, so there's the added excitement of the back-to-school season too! I like to make the morning extra special and something out of the ordinary to celebrate all of the new beginnings. Whether you're adding a fun theme to your already-planned curriculum or making the whole morning all about Promotion Sunday, here are a few fun Promotion Sunday themes! Promotion Sundaes - I've always wanted to host a giant ice cream party on Promotion Sunday and make special ice cream sundaes with the kids! Peel some bananas, scoop some ice cream, and drizzle some chocolate syrup for a tasty celebration. Then hand out "Here's the Scoop" print-outs with your event dates for the...

KidMin Bucket List

We make bucket lists for lots of things - summertime, our lives, a particular season. But have you ever made a bucket list for your children's ministry? As you head into back-to-school season and plan out the school year ahead, what hopes, dreams, and goals do you have for your ministry? Take some time this week to pray and brainstorm a bucket list or a dreams list for your children's ministry this school year. What do you want to see happen? What do you hope God does in and through your ministry? As you list ideas, defer judgment until later and just go for quantity. Challenge yourself to come with a bucket list of 100  different things. Don't get bogged down yet in the logistics and budget restraints. Just let yourself dream and brainstorm without restriction, criticism, or critique. You might even want to do the first part of a brain dump!...

Legos Creation Object Lesson

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Earlier in the week, we shared about Anne Marie Gosnell's Secret Sermon Object Lesson idea - it's brilliant, by the way - and she has graciously allowed us to share a free sample from her book: What God is Doing: Old Testament Object Lessons for Kids![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Free Sample + Creation Object Lesson Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dropbox.com%2Fs%2Fxqs55ofikssfkrk%2FPages%2520from%2520WhatGodIsDoing_PDFDL_SampleLesson1.pdf%3Fdl%3D0|target:_blank"][vc_column_text]This free sample includes the introduction and the very first object lesson on creation. It uses letter tiles and Legos to teach kids that everything was created by an all-powerful God who is the ultimate designer. Interested in connecting more with Anne Marie? She’s been in some sort of...

Secret Sermon Object Lessons from Anne Marie Gosnell

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Do you use object lessons in your children's ministry? Have you ever heard of "Secret Sermon" object lessons? I learned about Secret Sermon object lessons from my friend Anne Marie, the creator of Future Flying Saucers. She uses them in their family services each Sunday morning to engage kids and teach them about God's Word. Here's how they work... During a specified time in the family service, the children are invited to the front to sit with Anne Marie. One of them brings a random, surprise object. Anne Marie has to use the object to teach a Bible truth, right on the spot! Anne Marie has posted about a few of her Secret Sermons on Facebook, and I've been so intrigued with the idea. It takes a lot of creativity, quick-thinking, and guts to pull this off well, but she does such a great job. She let me ask her...

5 Ways to Celebrate Back-To-School Season in Your Ministry

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Knowing the rhythms of life for the families you serve and stepping into those rhythms to celebrate milestones is a key factor in connecting with your families. One of the biggest milestones each year is back-to-school season! So here are 5 ways to celebrate this important time in your children's ministry: Host a special event - Whether it's a family event like a Back to School Prayer Bash or a kids-only event that gives the parents a break (like our brand new science-themed Parents' Night Out), hosting a fun kick-of event for the Back to School Season is a great way to help families celebrate! You could even bring back some of the creative alternatives from last year during COVID-season, like the Drive Through Back-to-School Event that my church hosted! Equip families to celebrate at home - A lot of prep...

3 Ways to Make Families Hate Coming To Your Family Worship Service

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Family worship services offer a great opportunity for intergenerational worship and to teach kids what it means to be part of the body of Christ. But family services are often new experiences for families and leaders alike, and they can be intimidating for everyone involved. If you really want to make your families hate attending your service, just do these 3 things... Don't communicate with parents. Parents probably have a lot of questions about what a family service may entail. How long will it last? What if their kids are noisy? What if the kids can't sit still? Don't address any of these questions ahead of time; families will figure it out when they arrive. Work to keep kids quiet. Rather than engaging kids and inviting them into the service, do what you can to provide activities and busy bags that...

Identity Truths Kids Need to Know

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In a world that is constantly telling kids who they are and who they should be, we have a vital responsibility as children's ministry leaders to teach kids about who they are in Christ. Unless kids hear and embrace the truths God declares about them, they will not come to a full understanding of who they are in Christ and will never reach their full God-given potential. Here are just a few important truths kids need to internalize... I am who God says I am. (“So God created human beings in his own likeness..." Genesis 1:27 (NIrV)) In Christ, I am REDEEMED. (“'For I have redeemed you,’ God says.” Isaiah 43:1 (NKJV)) In Christ, I am a NEW CREATION. ("When anyone lives in Christ, the new creation has come. The old is gone! The new is here!" 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIrV)) In Christ, I am a CHILD...

Books to Stock in your Church Nursery or Preschool

Reading books to babies, toddlers, and preschoolers helps them build language, learn about the world around them, and develop listening skills. Even reading to babies is important to help them begin developing the tone and rhythm of language. So as you're snuggling with babies and playing with preschoolers, here are some books I recommend for your church nursery or preschool classes. Are there any you recognize? Are there any you'd add to these lists? Nursery Books: Good News! God Made Me! by Glennys Nellist (this is one of my toddler's favorites!) Thank You, God from A to Z by Pamela Kennedy Baby's Hug-a-Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones First 100 Words by Roger Priddy Psalms of Praise: A Movement Primer by Danielle Hitchen and Jessica Blanchard All Day Long, God Loves Me by Mikal Keefer First I Say a Prayer by Crystal Bowman...

Simple Scripture Habits For Families

Sometimes parents feel overwhelmed by the thought of family devotions or reading the Bible with their kids. But you can remind them that even the simplest habits can help them incorporate Scripture into their daily lives! Here are a few ideas to share with the families in your church: Decorate with scripture - Many families have more scripture in their homes than they realize, but it's also easy to make it an art project or part of a holiday celebration! With an activity like Scripture Stars or even encouraging kids to make their own Bible verse poster, families can hang up scripture around their homes where they'll see it every day. If they're decorating for a certain holiday or season, they can find Bible verses that relate to that celebration, add them to some decorations, and hang those up too! Then each time they pass the scripture...

Sizzling Summer Resources for Your KidMin

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Things are heating up as summer rolls around, but that doesn't mean the spiritual life of your kids has to cool down! While summertime often means even more sporadic church attendance as families enjoy trips, vacations, and downtime, the summer can be an opportunity for spiritual growth for the kids and families you lead. Let us help you and your families dive into God's Word this summer with some of these sizzling summer resources![/vc_column_text][vc_toggle title="New for 2021" custom_font_container="tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%233ac1e1" custom_use_theme_fonts="yes" use_custom_heading="true"] Summer Social Media Challenges - We know that summer (and especially summer in a worldwide pandemic!) can be a tough time to try to connect with families, so this resource includes eight simple and fun ideas you...

Teaching Kids About Pentecost

Does your church recognize and celebrate Pentecost Sunday? It's a church holiday that I didn't even learn about until I was an adult, but recognizing Pentecost offers great value to kids in teaching them about the early church and the Holy Spirit. Use this resource and the ideas below to help your kids and families learn about and celebrate this special day in the Church! What is Pentecost? Pentecost is a Christian day that commemorates the descending of the Holy Spirit and the beginning of the church, also known as the birthday of the church. You can read about Pentecost and the coming of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2. Christians celebrate this day on the 50th day after Easter. And - because God's timing is so cool and He intentionally orchestrates events - Pentecost is actually a Jewish holiday, also called Shavuot, that happened 50 days after...

Baby Dedication Gifts From Your Ministry

I'd bet there were a lot of baby dedications this past weekend for Mother's Day. What a perfect day to honor new babies and welcome them into your church family! But did you feel fully equipped to teach the parents what a baby dedication is all about? Because - plot twist - a baby dedication is not about the baby. It's about the parents and their commitment to raise their child in the church. It's about the church's commitment to partner with parents in the discipleship of their child. (Psst - If you want a full resource to help you communicate the significance of a child dedication, check out our baby dedication guide here.) Many leaders and churches also give a special gift to the family for a baby dedication to help them commemorate the day and start them off on their discipleship journey as a family. Here are some of the most popular...

Children’s Ministry Mother’s Day Ideas for the 5 Love Languages

Moms are pretty special, and they deserve to be celebrated. But each mom is unique and feels celebrated in a different way. Use some of these ideas and resources to celebrate the moms in your ministry in the way(s) they feel loved the most. Offer a combination of the different ideas to hit all 5 love languages! Quality time: Pass to a local family museum or fun family outing - Even as something simple as an ice cream coupon so the family can go on an ice cream date with mom! Mother/Son Prayer Journal by Christie Thomas - I don't have sons, but I bought a copy of this family devotional. Wow, what a resource! What better way to spend quality time together than by studying God's word as a family? It would make the perfect gift for the boy moms in your ministry! Bible Moms Award Event - Make a night of it and celebrate moms with a...

Connecting Digitally With Your Volunteers

We can't talk about ministry - even digital ministry - without talking about volunteers! Whether you use texts, emails, vlogs, blog posts, or social media, take advantage of our digital world to connect with your volunteers, especially in this season of COVID-19. One of the ways I connected digitally with my volunteers (especially since we were a mobile church and had no permanent space) was through a Volunteer Facebook Group. The Volunteer Facebook Group was a secret group, meaning volunteers could request permission to join, but only I (the Children’s Ministry Director) could approve their request. All posts in this group were private and only seen by members of the group. Volunteers could request to join the Facebook Group after training. We used this secret group to ask for subs/switching weeks of service, share news or funny stories...