Rock Stars Book Review and Giveaway

[vc_row 0=""][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="12049" img_size="medium" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" link="https://amzn.to/2CSaJ99"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text 0=""] Rock Stars: Inspiring a Team of Unstoppable Volunteers By KidMin Nation (Editor: Tina Houser) My rating: 5/5 stars - It was amazing!     Read: April 2019[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row 0=""][vc_column 0=""][vc_column_text 0=""]This book is for you if... you lead volunteers, you want to encourage and equip your volunteers My thoughts: This book came at the perfect time! We just finished up Admin April 2019, focusing on all things volunteers, so I loved reading this book that gave me new ideas and perspectives on volunteers too. This isn't the first time I've been honored to have a chapter published...

“Freaking May!”

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]I loved this insight from Dema Kohen, one of our DKM Marketplace Vendors and just had to share. Here's some of his wisdom on serving our families well in the month of May (and how to help them). It's the first day of May, and... many families in our churches are freaking out. But don't take my word for it. Take a look at this post that popped up in my Facebook feed earlier today. (This is from one of the moms who attends our church.)[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image="12632" img_size="full" alignment="center"][vc_column_text]Take a good look at this calendar, because I dare to say it represents reality for 95% of the families in your congregation. If you are thinking of pulling off a big event this month... don't do it! At least don't do it until you ask the families in your church if they...

Super Volunteer Appreciation Gift Card Printable

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]If we want our volunteers to stick around, we have to celebrate them! Remind your volunteers how SUPER they are with this free volunteer appreciation gift card printable! (Gift card not included in download.)[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download Super Volunteer Appreciation Printable Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FDKM-Super-Volunteer-Appreciation-Gift-Card-Printable-Final.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][vc_column_text]All you need is this printable, gift card(s) of your price and choice (my volunteers love Starbucks and Chick-fil-a), and some glue dots! Just print and cut the download, add your gift cards using glue dots or double-sided tape, then hand out to your volunteers as a way of saying...

Celebrating (& Retaining) Volunteers

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]If we want our volunteers to stick around, we have to celebrate them! Here are some easy ways to celebrate (and therefore retain) the volunteers in your children's ministry. Say thanks. As often as possible, thank the volunteers on your team verbally or in writing. Send out weekly “thank-you” emails to all who served that Sunday, and try to write at least one handwritten note a week to a volunteer on your team. We even created superhero-themed postcards you can use to remind your volunteers how awesome they are! Download them here. Think of specific reasons you are thankful for the volunteer, and thank them for who they are, not just the job they fill (i.e. “thank you for using your creativity to help our preschoolers understand more about the story of Jonah today” instead of just “thank you for...

Top Ten Volunteer Expectations Printable

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Your volunteers are the superheroes of your ministry, but that doesn’t mean they can read your mind! Use this free printable to communicate your expectations of volunteers and remind them what you need from them. Go into the details of each expectation at your annual training, then use this printable to remind volunteers throughout the year, post in your Volunteer Facebook Group, or hang up in your classrooms.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download Top Ten Expectations Printable Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FDKM-Top-Ten-Hero-Expectations-Printable.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="11077" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" img_link_target="_blank"...

4 Types of Volunteer Training

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Just like pie comes in a variety of forms, so does effective volunteer training. Each method described below uses the ingredients of prepare, inspire, and equip to reach volunteers in a variety of levels, formats, and times. Pumpkin Pie - Annual Training Much like we typically eat pumpkin pie once a year at Thanksgiving, your annual training is the special once-a-year training for your entire volunteer team. For rookie and veteran volunteers alike, this training happens every year, typically at the start of the school year, and it is the chance to prepare, inspire, and equip your team for the year ahead. It should include an overview of the ministry, an explanation of curriculum and teaching resources, explanation of policies, procedures, and expectations, child protection policies, discipline guidelines,...

Volunteer Covenant

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Part of effective training is teaching your volunteers about your expectations for them. But sometimes it's hard to communicate your expectations with your volunteers. Here's what Julia, one of our Vendors (and the creator of this week's freebie), shared about her experience when she implemented a Volunteer Covenant as part of the application and training process: When I started in my kidmin role nearly 5 years ago, I was struggling with how to keep volunteers accountable and communicate expectations. While many of them were members and had filled out volunteer applications, what I needed from them weekly - both in our children’s ministry and in their lives outside of it - wasn’t being clearly communicated! So, I crafted this volunteer covenant. Each of our volunteers signs this covenant before serving in...

PIE Them in the Face: Effective Volunteer Training

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Effective volunteer training will PIE your volunteers in the face. And I’m not talking about a whipped cream pie (although that could be fun). Effective volunteer training will prepare them, inspire them, and equip them to serve to the best of their ability based on their God-given talents and gifts. No matter what type of training you’re doing, you can incorporate these three ingredients to make your training more effective. Prepare Them Your volunteer training should prepare your volunteers to lead. That means sharing the nuts and bolts of the ministry, the safety policies, the expectations of a good volunteer, etc. What do volunteers need to know to serve and lead well? This element of training can be long and tedious, but I make it bite-sized and easier to digest by making a “top 10" list of the...

Children’s Ministry Volunteer Application

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]A volunteer application is an important part of the volunteer screening process in children's ministry. It not only helps you collect important information, but it also helps you see a volunteer's heart for serving and passion for kids.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title="Download Volunteer Application Now" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FVolunteer-Application-Background-Check.doc||target:%20_blank|"][vc_column_text]Using a volunteer application helps ensure your volunteers want to serve with your ministry, are capable of serving with your ministry, and are safe to serve with your ministry. This week's free download is a volunteer application created from a variety of options and inspired by Smart Church Management....

Volunteer Screening Process

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] As part of the volunteer recruitment process, it's important to take the necessary precautions to screen new volunteers and make sure they're the right (and safest) fit for your ministry. Here's the screening process I used in my ministry to help make sure our volunteers understand the importance and expectations of their role. Volunteers who serve with our kids should... Attend for 6+ Months. Serving is an important step in being part of the body of Christ. Before a volunteer steps into their role, you want to make sure that they are getting spiritually fed, getting connected, and – most importantly – desiring to serve at your church as a part of the commitment to making this church family theirs. *Requirement for lead volunteer positions only: Become a Member - Becoming a member means that they protect...

Volunteer Recruitment Email Templates

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Recruiting volunteers takes more than just an on-stage announcement. You have to build relationships, communicate your vision, and make personal asks. So this week I'm sharing my email templates that invited rookie volunteers to join the team and asked veteran volunteers to recommit. (Note: This download is a zipped folder, which means you won't be able to open it on a mobile device.)[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Templates Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FDKM-Volunteer-Recruitment-Email-Templates.zip||target:%20_blank|"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_empty_space][vc_single_image image="11077" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" img_link_target="_blank"...

Volunteer Recruitment

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]We're kicking off Admin April 2019 by talking about Volunteer Recruitment. Don't you wish a million hands would shoot excitedly into the air when you ask if anyone wants to volunteer with your children's ministry? Me too! But that's not quite how reality works, so here are some tips for recruiting volunteers and inviting them to join your kidmin team. (And here are the email templates I used to recruit volunteers to my team!) Start with prayer. Just as with everything else in ministry, we should start with prayer: acknowledging God’s ownership of our ministry and asking Him to “send laborers into the His harvest” (Matthew 9:37-38, NIV). Begin by praying about your ministry as it currently is, where you feel God is calling your ministry to go, and who can help you get there. Identify the needs. Prepare a...

Admin April 2019: Volunteers

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Happy Admin April! Every April, we focus on resources and strategies that help you rock the administrative responsibilities of our kidmin role. (Check out Admin April 2018 here - think budgets, behavior, and forms, oh my!) This year's focus is all things volunteers! From recruitment to training to volunteer appreciation, managing our volunteer teams is an administrative task we must do well in order to succeed. Here's a look at what we've got coming up this month, and check back here for a final compilation of all the Admin April Volunteer resources... Week 1 [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="11123" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" link="https://deeperkidmin.com/volunteer-recruitment/"][vc_btn title="Read Volunteer...

Easter Songs About Salvation for Kids

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Last year, I shared my Top 5 Easter Worship Songs for Kids, and this year, I'm sharing my top Easter songs for kids that really focus on the topic of salvation through Jesus. While most worship songs include this topic, I like these songs for the way they communicate our salvation through Jesus' death and resurrection for kids. Several of them can be downloaded from Worship House Kids.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]I Stand Amazed (How Marvelous) by Yancy - I love it when Yancy takes an old hymn and re-works it into a song ofr kids! This song invites kids to thing about how marvelous it is that Jesus took our sins and sorrows. It's a little slower, but it's a great way to invite kids into a reverent time of worship and response.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text] [/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]This is Amazing...

The Power of the Family Dinner

Since we talked about fasting last week, it's only natural to talk about dinner time this week, right? :) One of our DKM Vendors wrote a compelling argument for encouraging families in our ministries to spend time together around the dinner table, so rather than trying to reinvent the dinner table discussion wheel, I'll just let Dema Kohen do the talking this week... Family dinners are SPECIAL times. I would even say, they are SACRED times. In a world where media over-saturation and activity-overload are disconnecting us from ourselves, others, nature, and God, family dinner is the glue that can hold the family together.  I'm convinced that one of the most important things a church can do for the families is to encourage them to gather around the dinner table more often and teach them how to do it. I don't have time to cover the...

Give Up, Fill Up Fasting Activity for Kids

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Earlier in the week, we talked about important elements of teaching fasting to kids, so here's an activity to help kids learn that fasting is a way for us to give up something so God can fill us up.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Give Up Fill Up Fasting Activity for Kids!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FDKM-Give-Up-Fill-Up-Fasting-Activity-for-Kids.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][vc_column_text]Supplies: 2 paper/plastic solo cups per child 1 copy of the Give Up/Fill Up slips per child Scissors Markers (to label the cups) Here’s how it works: Give each kid two plastic cups; one labeled “GIVE UP” and one labeled “FILL UP” and a set of “Give Up, Fill Up” strips. Give them scissors and have them cut their strips...

Should Kids Fast?

Fasting is the spiritual discipline of abstaining from food or drink for spiritual purposes. It allows us to remove distraction, focus on God's blessings or callings, and develop the discipline of training our minds and our bodies. (I highly recommend Richard Foster's book Celebration of Discipline for an in-depth study and application of fasting and other spiritual disciplines.) Jesus (Luke 4), Daniel (Daniel 10), and Esther (Esther 4) are all Biblical examples of fasting, so we know it can be an important part of our faith journey. But what about kids? Should kids fast?  While I don't recommend kids fasting from meals, there are safe ways kids can develop the discipline of fasting. Fasting is all about sacrifice, about giving something up so that something else can take its place as a priority or consuming thought in our lives. It's a...

Kids Prayer Journal Printable

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Give kids the experience of prayer journaling using this free prayer journal printable! This activity can easily fit into any lesson or small group time, although it was created for the Journey Through Jonah 8-week series.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Prayer Printable Now!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F09%2FDKM-Kids-Prayer-Journal-Printable.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][vc_column_text]Supplies: prayer journal printable, writing utensils, (optional: soft worship music in the background) Details: Explain to kids that one of the ways we can pray to God is through using a journal. Give each kid a prayer journal printable. Play quiet worship music in the background and have kids fill out their first prayer journal sheet. Older kids can write in...

Family Easter Event: Walk in the Light

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]I've been getting a lot of questions about the Walk in the Light Family Easter Event, so I decided I'd give you a closer look at how our event went and answer some of the most common questions. A couple years ago, I was tired of hosting ANOTHER egg hunt for Easter. Even though our Glow in the Dark Egg Hunt events were pretty awesome, I was ready for something new. Plus, I got word that our local community was hosting a lantern parade on the same night as our scheduled Easter event. So after some prayer and talking with my Parent Council, we decided if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, and Walk in the Light was created! We invited families to join us for 2 hours on a Saturday morning for worship, a short lesson, and a time of lantern-decorating. We tied the lesson into 1 John 1:5-7 and talked about how we could...

10 Psalms Every Kid Should Know

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The Psalms are often overlooked in children's ministry since they don't provide the typical story-style teaching. But the book of Psalms is still an important book for kids to know about, especially as they learn to deal with their emotions and discover the character of God. Here are 10 Psalms I think every kid should know. What are some of your favorites? Psalm 1 - This one reminds kids what it looks like to walk with God. Psalm 19 - A great passage for reminding kids how God's Word leads to refreshment, enlightenment, and life, and how God is worthy of our praise. Psalm 19:14 is a great one for kids to memorize! Psalm 23 - Isn't this pretty much everyone's favorite Psalm? The shepherd analogy helps kids understand God as their protector, and this Psalm can be a source of comfort when kids are...

Lean In Giveaway Results & Your KidMin Goals

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In the latest giveaway for this book from KidMin Nation, I asked you to tell me about one of your goals for the year and how you plan to accomplish it. And boy do you have some big goals! I love seeing how you’re thinking big and starting small with your plans for the year ahead.  Congratulations to Kristina in Washington State for winning a free copy of the book! Kristina said her goal for the year was all about volunteer management: I want to learn how to train and empower my volunteer team. I really struggle with this area in the past. Working toward this goal by strategically planning our bi-annual trainings (the purpose, what we will cover, how to appreciate them). What do I teach them? And how/what do I teach them depending on the age they teach. I'd like to find ways each month to do this rather...

Lean In Book Review and Giveaway

[vc_row 0=""][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="8992" img_size="medium" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" link="https://amzn.to/2CSaJ99"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text 0=""] Lean In: Leverage Your Influence for Ministry Impact By KidMin Nation (Editor: Tina Houser) My rating: 5/5 stars - It was amazing!     Read: December 2018[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row 0=""][vc_column 0=""][vc_column_text 0=""]This book is for you if... you are a leader, you want to grow as a leader, you don't feel like a leader but want to My thoughts: Third time's a charm! I'm so excited to have had another chance to be included for publication in a KidMin Nation book. While the first book was all about connecting with parents (see more details here) and the second book was all about connecting...

Resource Review – The Greatest Story Ever Told: The Bible Album

I love finding new ways to draw kids into the overarching story of the Bible and helping them connect the storyline throughout the Scriptures. Which is why I'm IN LOVE with this new album from High Point Church. There are 66 books of the Bible, and The Greatest Story Ever Told: The Bible helps kids see how all of those books connect through 12 catchy songs. It was created by a children's pastor with a passion for helping kids enjoy the Bible. My favorite song? #6: Rise of the Kingship (Forever Be) - First of all, it's a beautiful melody. But then you get to the lyrics and that's where it got me. Even though it talks about Saul and David and the rise of the Kingship in Israel (hence the title), it emphasizes how these kings point to a future King... "But it's not about David, you see. David pointed to a much greater king... God will put a...

Getting Away to Pray, Plan, and Dream

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend a "work retreat" with Joy Canupp, a women's Christian leadership coach/speaker and the creator behind Simply Joy. It was AWESOME. The point of the weekend was for creators, writers, business leaders, etc. to come together for a time of productivity and shared learning. We stayed in Joy's vacation home in the mountains of NC, and the 100+-year-old house had so much character and so much space to spread out and work. (The electric heated blanket on my bed and the hot tea selection also made my stay super cozy). Throughout the Thursday-lunch to Saturday-lunch event, there were over 14 hours of individual, uninterrupted work time scheduled, and it was glorious. I was able to pray, plan, dream, and write for the year ahead, jotting down ideas and checking...

Top Nine 2018

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]There's a handy little app that consolidates your top 9 Instagram posts from the year into one easy post, so as we head into 2019, I wanted to take a minute and celebrate the moments and posts you enjoyed most! (And you can create your own Top Nine image here.)[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]May 1 - Shared a review of this book on the blog today. If you have children or serve children, this is a great read! Read the full review here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="8604" img_size="full" alignment="center"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="8609" img_size="full" alignment="center"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]January 13 - "Thank you for the fantastic idea...