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How To Write A Children’s Church Lesson From Scratch


by Jason Smathers on September 5, 2010

#1 Pray: Begin by asking for God’s help. Omitting prayer will lead to an attitude of pride and leave your lesson spiritually weak. So stop reading now and pray for God’s help … really.

#2 Read: Start as early as possible to read the Bible passage you will be teaching. I like to read through the passage several before crafting my lesson. This step is foundational. You can’t teach what you don’t understand. Make notes of difficult words or ideas. Write down anything that God uses to deepen your love for Him.

#3 Focus: Ask yourself, “What is this passage saying about God?”You must discover what God is saying about himself in the passage.Children don’t need Bible facts. They need to know God. Everything about your children’s church lesson must be focused on God.

#4 Apply: Discover the connection of the passage to daily life. After answering the BIG GOD QUESTION you are ready for application. If the passage teaches that God is strong to save his people, how does this apply to the children? Resist the temptation to bend the passage around your application. Be crystal clear. Use real life examples.

#5 Draft: Write an initial draft of your lesson. This is an essential step for me to know where I am going with the lesson. I need a concrete plan. I rarely use my notes when I teach but having them give me the freedom to teach.

#6 Check: Compare your lesson to a doctrinally solid children’s story Bible. I only use these sources after I’ve written my children’s church lesson. I usually find ideas illustrations and object lessons from these sources.

#7 Supplement: Find relevant supporting material for your lesson.There are many free sources for coloring sheets, children’s ministry activities or Sunday school games available. I’m a member of Kidology – for $44 per year they may be the only supplemental resource your need. You can also find some ideas from my post on children’s Sunday school lessons.

#8 Feedback: Seek input from others. Once your lesson is complete, ask your pastor or fellow children’s ministry volunteers to review it. They might have a great idea to contribute.

#9 Evaluate: Review your lesson after you’ve taught it. In my ministry I’ve often learned best from trial and error. This step will take some discipline, but constantly examining your children’s church lessons will make you a better teaching. Be sure to thank God for what works and ask for wisdom to learn from your mistakes.

This was written by Tony Kummer and was first published as “How To Write A Children’s Church Lesson From Scratch” on Tony says he uses this 9 step process each week to create his Children’s Church lessons. One thing Tony doesn’t discuss is selecting your text. I like teaching systematically and I often use a Catechism for selecting the scriptures for a lesson. Consider working through A Catechism for Boys and Girls.

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