5 Tips for Engaging Kids Through Video

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]As you're returning to in-person services, you may consider continuing your virtual lessons as part of your digital discipleship strategy.  Use the tips below to make it the best possible experience for your kids and families (and you)! Make a plan. Just like you wouldn't walk into a regular Sunday morning without a plan for the day, don't try to do that with a video either! Make sure you and your team know the order and flow of the video, and be sure to set any props off-screen but within reach. You may also want to have links ready to share, like links to a folder on Google Drive of activity worksheets that go with the lesson, links to worship videos, links to a video lesson, and more! (Just make sure your curriculum & worship songs allow sharing the resources in this way). Spend the time prepping for...

The Best Way to Reach Families this Easter

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]A couple of weeks ago, I spoke at and attended the Bible Creative Online Conference. One of the speakers, Dale Hudson of Building Children's Ministry, talked about one of the best ways to reach the families at our church: give them opportunities for shared, memorable experiences that point to a greater purpose. So this Easter, how can we give our families a chance to create a shared, memorable experience that points to a greater purpose? These ideas might help! Help them throw a family Easter party - Everyone loves celebrations! And while you may not be able to host your regular Easter events in-person, you can provide ideas and supplies for your families to celebrate Easter at home! Just like an in-person event, think through a special theme, games, family devotion, snacks, and fun for your families! This...

Lament Activity for Kids

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The past year has caused a lot of stress, change, and grief for kids. Use this Lament Activity for Kids to help them express their grief and trust in God through their sadness. (And see this post for a word on lamenting this Lent season.) [/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Lament Activity for Kids here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F02%2FDKM-Lament-Activity-for-Kids-Freebie-1.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text]Tip: You may want to show kids an example of a lament Psalm (Psalm 13 is a good place to start) and point out how the psalmist expresses their sadness to God, then remembers God's faithfulness.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="27513" img_size="full" alignment="center"...

L(am)ent

lent and lament
This week brings Ash Wednesday and the beginning of the Lent season. I've learned (and am still learning) most of what I know about Lent as an adult. One word I've come to associate with Lent is "lament" because both Lent and lamenting bring into sharp focus the reality of suffering. And this year, lament seems to be a relevant word as we head toward the 1-year "anniversary" of the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. A full year of lockdowns and quarantines and masks and social-distancing. A full year of canceled plans, virtual church, and sickness. And now we're trying to balance lamenting the pandemic while still living through it. At least for now, the pandemic is still going strong, and we'll probably be having virtual church for Easter again. As we dive headlong into Jesus' journey of suffering to the cross through Lent, let's take time...

Valentine Resources for Your Children’s Ministry

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Valentine's Day happens on a Sunday this year (2021), and we've got some great resources to help your kids celebrate and show God's love that day![/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text="If you're not meeting in person (and even if you are)..." font_container="tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%233ac1e1" use_theme_fonts="yes"][vc_column_text] Help your kids know that Jesus loves them! This I Know is a 4-week Valentine’s devotional for kids and families. This resource for families focuses on 4 stories in the New Testament that help them know that Jesus loves them. Download This I Know here.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text="Help kids SHOW God's love with a Service Project!" font_container="tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%233ac1e1" use_theme_fonts="yes"][vc_column_text] Operation Valentine is a...

First Responder Coloring Page

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Use this free "Thank you, First Responders!" coloring page to send a little encouragement to first responders as they continue to keep us safe and healthy.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the coloring page here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2021%2F01%2FDKM-Thank-You-First-Responder-Coloring-Page-Freebie.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_column_text] Invite kids to color the picture and write a note on the back to hospital workers, firefighters, or police, then deliver or mail the finished pictures & notes to the local first responders in your community! Want to show even more encouragement and support for first responders? Check out our First Responder Appreciation Card Designs or our Hospital Prayer & Support Sign...

3 Hospital Appreciation Ideas for Children’s Ministries

My church and my neighborhood are located just 2 miles down the road from a major hospital, and several of our church members work at the hospital or in the medical field. After talking with some of these frontline workers about how things are going, here are some of their responses: "Morale is dipping and community support has been lacking." "Support was great at the beginning, but people have gone back to their normal lives, and there's hardly any extra show of support now." "Our employees need encouragement." And here's a recent post in my neighborhood's FB group: "The staff is exhausted... The signs of support from the community will be a big morale booster for the staff." It's obvious our local hospitals need some encouragement as they continue to risk their lives to save and protect ours. And what better place for that...

20 Lessons from 2020

2020 was quite a year, and I learned a lot. These lessons may be relevant to you, or they may not, and they vary from personal to ministry-related. Here are 20 lessons I learned from 2020: "Creativity begins at the moment we don't know what we are doing." - Simon Sinek Motherhood is simultaneously the most beautiful and most exhausting thing in the world. We all need each other. My worldview is smaller than I believed, and I still have more to learn. Listening to audiobooks still counts as reading. A little bit of sunshine and fresh air goes a long way. Learning doesn't have to be formal. Change isn't a bad thing. Playing is just as important as working. There is good to be found in every situation because God can be found in every situation. Good lighting makes a big difference. Dreaming is not the same as...

Christmas Card Day

Did you know that December 9 is an official holiday called "Christmas Card Day"? Who knew!? It's celebrated in honor of the very first commercial Christmas cards that were sent in 1843 in London by Sir Henry Cole. And while it very well could be a holiday that Hallmark added to our calendars to boost their own sales, the spirit of the day remains true. The tradition of sending a little Christmas cheer to family and friends is a sure way to brighten someone's holiday season. So how can you celebrate Christmas Card Day as a children's ministry leader?  Send Christmas cards! 2020 is the perfect year to send Christmas cards to your families, especially if you're back/still in quarantine. It's an easy way to connect with families and let kids know you miss them. (Psst - we've made this one super easy for you! Download our "We miss you!"...

COVID-Friendly Christmas Resources

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! And while we're not sure what Christmas will look like this year, we hope these COVID-friendly Christmas ideas/resources help make your season merry and bright! Want a more visual rundown of our best Christmas resources for 2020? Check out our DKM 2020 Christmas Catalog![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the DKM 2020 Christmas Catalog here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F11%2FDeeper-KidMins-2020-Christmas-Catalog.pdf|target:_blank"][vc_toggle title="Family Advent Resources"]Family Advent Bingo - New for 2020! Family Advent Bingo turns your typical family Advent calendar into a fun, month-long game! Your families can count down to Christmas with simple, daily activities designed to help them learn...

Driveway Dinners: Fall Fellowship Idea

If quarantine has taught us one thing, it's our need for community and fellowship. RISING Church in Buford, GA is meeting that need with a monthly event called Driveway Dinners, and they've agreed to let me share the details! What are Driveway Dinners? Driveway Dinners are a social distancing event for church families to get together and catch up. Each family brings a chair, blanket, bug spray, outdoor activities if they want, and enough food and drinks for themselves, then they meet in a host's driveway for dinner and hangs with 3-4 other church families. It's a great way to gather together while still accommodating different comfort levels since you ask people to socially-distance outside in the driveway. People can choose to wear masks or not (RISING Church is located in Georgia, where masks are optional - follow your local social distancing...

Faith-Based Fall Coloring Pages

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Share these fun fall coloring pages with your kids and families as part of your fall event, fall family fun ideas, or as part of a fall take-home kit![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Faith-based Fall Coloring Pages Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F09%2FDKM-Fall-Coloring-Pages-Treat-Street-To-Go.pdf|target:_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="39441" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" img_link_target="_blank" link="https://deeperkidmin.com/product/treat-street-to-go/"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]These faith-based fall coloring pages come from our Treat Street To-Go download, a Christian Halloween alternative for families, written by Vanessa Myers....

Fall Family Fun

Share this list of fun fall family activities with the families in your ministry to do at home, or incorporate them as part of your in-person fall event! A lot of these ideas, printables, and more are included in our Not So Spooky Night at Home Fall Fest Take-Home Kit for families, and you can learn more about this resource here. Family Costume Contest – Everyone put on a costume! Find a costume you have already or create one using things you find around the house. Take a family picture in your costumes and post on social media, asking people to vote on which costume they think is the best! Don’t forget to tag our church in the picture too! Monster Mash Freeze Dance – With a grown-up’s help, look up the song “Monster Mash” on YouTube or your favorite music streaming service. Listen to the song and play Monster Mash Freeze Dance!...

Ministry Planning Tool

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Even if you didn't win our Equip Family Online Courses giveaway, we've still got something for you! This week's freebie is a Ministry Planning Tool that helps you plan the year ahead. It was only available for free through the end of October 2020, but you can purchase the Ministry Planning Tool as part of the Creative Ideas for Family Ministry online course, or for a small fee here.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Make plans for your ministry year with this ministry planning tool. This PDF includes four sections: Ask key questions about your ministry goals for the year. Brainstorm ideas for events, teaching & family connections – and filter them. Create a ministry calendar. Think about a back-up plan in case of changes to in-person ministry or large...

Fall Family Challenge Printable

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Share this Fall Family Challenge with your families to help them celebrate the autumn season and have some fun together! Encourage families to post pictures of their family challenges on social media, tagging your church or using a specific hashtag. Give families a whole month, or set a few specific challenges each week. You choose what works best for you![/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Fall Family Challenge Here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F08%2FDeeper-KidMin-Fall-Family-Challenge-Freebie.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="38960" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" img_link_target="_blank"...

Back to School Customizable Calendar

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Use this customizable Back to School Calendar to provide families with daily prompts to keep them connected to God and each other! The goal: each day’s activity should take five minutes or less. There are no dates on the calendar so you can begin and end whenever you want! Please note: The customizable feature will not show up on a mobile device. Read the Editable PDF instructions below for more details.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Click here to download the customizable Back to School Calendar!" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F08%2FDKM-Back-to-School-Customizable-Calendar-Freebie.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][vc_column_text]Recommended Ideas for Daily Activities: Make each day of the week fit a specific theme or idea: Prayer Prompt Sundays (Tell God one thing...

Drive-Through Food Drive Back to School Event

Since we can't do our normal Back to School Bash this year (thanks COVID), we're getting creative with another idea instead! Our children's pastor wanted to find a fun way to distribute our Back to School Kits to families while also helping our food pantry stock up on the most-needed items for the year ahead. So she came up with Drive Away Hunger: A Drive-Through Food Drive Event!  What is it? Drive Away Hunger is a back to school event that helps us connect with our people and also gives back to the community. It's a drive-through food drive where families bring donations for our food pantry, and they also pick up a Back to School Kit and an ice cream treat! How will it work? Church members of all ages are invited to drive through the church parking lot and drop off their donations anytime between 6:30-8:00 PM on Wednesday, August 19....

Back to School Survival Kits

Making back to school survival kits are the perfect opportunity for you to connect with the families in your ministry as they head back to school. With so much uncertainty and diversity in back-to-school plans, a Back to School Survival Kit can be a great opportunity to provide families with simple ways to connect with God and each other! The point of the survival kit is to provide families with items they’ll need to “survive” the school year. You can include a spiritual element like the freebie calendar we'll share on Friday, August 21, this Back to School Prayer Journal for Kids, or this full Back to School Survival Kit that includes a family devotional and the list of ideas below. But you can also include physical items that offer practical help and encouragement. Here are some ideas for packing and distributing your Back to School...

Brain Dump Activity: 4 Steps to Reduce Stress and Maximize Productivity

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Anyone else feeling just a *bit* overwhelmed lately?  😅 🙋 Me too. Between back to school, figuring out what ministry looks like, feeding the family, finding time to exercise, and all the other things, there’s a lot rattling around in my brain! Maybe you can relate. (And if you can relate, we want to help!) Sometimes it's just all so overwhelming, you don't even know where to start. That’s why I love brain dumps. What is a brain dump? I learned about brain dumps from my friend and leadership coach Joy Canupp, and a brain dump is exactly what it sounds like: dumping the contents of your mind out onto paper to clear out the mental clutter and give you the clarity to move forward. A brain dump is effective because it allows you to calm the whirling tornado of thoughts and bring them to a more...

We Want To Help

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]As we move into the school year in the midst of COVID-19, life and ministry look more different than ever before. That's why we wanted to check in, see how you're doing, and ask how we can help you navigate this season. Thank you for taking a few minutes to answer this survey that will help us serve you better as you serve and lead kids! Click here to access the survey or complete the version below. Note: Survey closes August 12,...

Emoji Prayer Activity

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Kids have a lot of feelings as the school year begins in the midst of COVID-19. They may be feeling frustrated, excited, scared, angry, or all of the above. Use this free printable to help kids process their feelings, share them with the Lord, and ask Him for the peace only He can give. (Psst! Educators could probably use some encouragement too! Check out some free educator appreciation video ideas here!)[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Emoji Prayer Printable here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F07%2FDKM-Emoji-Prayer-Back-to-School-Freebie.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][vc_single_image image="36745" img_size="medium" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link" img_link_target="_blank"...

Educator Appreciation Videos

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]As we head back to school (online or in-person), it's the perfect opportunity to honor the teachers and educators in our churches. Below are some video + post ideas to use in your Sunday service and/or to post on your ministry social media accounts to remind your educators how much they are appreciated. On-stage or email script: Thank you, educators! You've put so much time, energy, and love into figuring out the school year ahead. We are grateful for you, and we are praying for your school year. [/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download this video for free here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fproduct%2Fthank-you-educators-video%2F||target:%20_blank|"][vc_separator color="custom" border_width="6" accent_color="#3ac1e1"][vc_column_text] This video from Google is so fun and...

Sunshine Mail Freebie

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] Even though we're celebrating our Christmas in July sale this week, there's still time to soak up some sun! Use this Sunshine Cards printable to send some sunshine in the mail to your kids! Print and cut the cards on the download below, then add a little note on the bottom or back of the card. To make it even more special, add other yellow or orange items such as balloons (uninflated), yellow laffy taffy, or other yellow and orange candies. [/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Sunshine Mail Cards here!" align="center" link="url:https%3A%2F%2Fdeeperkidmin.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F07%2FDKM-Sunshine-Mail-Freebie.pdf||target:%20_blank|"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="33691" img_size="full" alignment="center" onclick="custom_link"...

VBS Mad Libs Game For Kids

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] Earlier in the week, I shared about Hoops, an easy but fun social-distanced kids event, and here's a free VBS-themed Mad Libs game you can play with your kids at your Hoops event, online via Zoom, or in person! Use the VBS-themed Mad Lib game in this week's free download for a fun social-distanced activity to play with your kids! Underneath each blank line in the story, there is a prompt for the type of word you need. One at a time, ask kids to help you fill in the blanks, but only tell them the prompt, not the title, theme, or sentence. Write down kids’ answers in the blank, then read your Mad Lib VBS Story to the kids once all of the blanks are filled in. It’s sure to get some laughs! [/vc_column_text][vc_btn title="Download the Mad Libs Game Here!" align="center"...

Hoops: A Social-Distanced Kids Event

Jolie, the children's pastor at my church, came up with a BRILLIANT social-distanced kids event for the K-5th graders at our church, and she has graciously agreed to let me share her ideas with you! What is Hoops? A social-distanced event for kids that everyone loves (and that's easy to host)! How does Hoops work? Set up hula hoops 6ft apart in your church or ministry space. Invite kids to pack a lunch and meet you at the church (we divide up by small groups - each small group comes on a specific day to keep our numbers low). Hoops is a social-distanced kids event where parents drop their kids off at the church at 11:15 am for lunch, then pick the kids up again at 12:15 once lunch is over. Kids enter the building, find a hula hoop to sit in, and the fun begins! We talk, laugh, play a game, invite kids to share any prayer requests, and then...