Beginning September 3rd, we are going to offer a brand new program for children called “Lost & Found.” The program will be for children who are four years old up through those who are in sixth grade, and it will run throughout the course of the school year on Wednesday evenings from 6:30-8:00 at the church building. We wanted to briefly share about what to expect and why we are implementing this new program.
- More Relational | Most of the evening will be spent in a small group contexts that are more conversational and application-oriented to help the group leaders really get a grasp of where children are spiritually and to be able to speak into their lives…We also are going to have large group times each evening, where all the children can be together, rather than just coming and sticking with their group the entire evening.
- Different Approach to Learning | In years past, our Sunday morning classes and Wednesday night classes would basically take the same approach to teaching children: slowly progress through the entire Bible over the course of a few years, teaching children how to see Jesus through all of Scripture. But rather than having these approaches mirror one another, we thought why not take Wednesday evenings and have the teaching be more oriented around units of study that cover a given topic, rather than just progressing through the Bible book-by-book, but still helping children see Jesus as the hero of Scripture? And that is exactly how Lost & Found will be set up! We will have units that are four weeks long and each cover particular topics (e.g. Trinity, Creation, Cross, Church, etc.) at age-appropriate levels. Children of all ages will cover the same big idea each week, but do so in a way that helps them understand that broader issue, know what God’s Word has to say about it, and see how it has relevance to their lives. We think this approach will be a great balance to our Sunday morning classes and will help equip our children to think about issues that might not naturally come up with other teaching approaches!
- Memorization | As part of “Lost & Found,” we are going to encourage children to “hide God’s Word in their hearts” (Psalm 119:11). So as part of each unit, we are going to have two (or occasionally three) verses that children will be encouraged to memorize. Older children–those in second through sixth grades–will also be encouraged to memorize the “Big Idea” each week. Then, as they arrive on any given Wednesday, they will have opportunity to share what they have committed to memory with one of their small group leaders, who in turn will help monitor their progress on pennants that will line the walls of their group’s room. This will be part of a broader incentive/reward program which will give children an opportunity to be part of a special party at the end of each semester…More details to come!
- More Outreach Oriented | Though we’ve always encouraged children to invite their friends, we are going to make this emphasis more pronounced. And since we are beginning to offer discipleship classes for adults on Wednesday evenings, we are hoping that even entire families could join us throughout the year.
WHAT TO EXPECT ON AN AVERAGE NIGHT
- 6:30-6:45 | After being checked in and dropped off with their respective small group leaders, children will be able to recite their memory verse or big idea that they’ve worked on from the previous week; and they’ll be engaged in a Focus Activity to prime the pump of their thinking as they gear up toward the lesson.
- 6:45-7:00 | All groups will head to the auditorium for a large group time that will include things like singing, videos, updates, prayer, and sharing of what we’ve been learning.
- 7:00-7:15 | Children will then be divided into two groups (4 year olds through first graders & 2nd through 6th graders) where they will be taught an engaging lesson that revolves around a “big idea” for the night.
- 7:15-7:45 | Children will return back to their small groups after the lesson for a time to process what they’ve learned, explore Scripture, share about their lives, and pray together as a group.
- 7:45-8:00 | To conclude the night, small groups will intentionally be encouraged to have recreation time. Small group leaders will participate and observe, for the purpose of watching how children interact with each other and looking for ways to encourage or challenge them to engage their peers in a way that honors Jesus.
There are registration forms at the Children’s Ministry Center at the church building. Or you can download one by clicking here: REGISTRATION FORM. It’s a simple form, and we only need one per family….They can be returned to the church office any time during the week or to the CMC any of the upcoming Sunday mornings.