For Sunday school teachers, the classroom is a sanctum, the lessons are the lifeblood, and the students are a treasured flock.
FOSTERING FUTURE FAITHFUL
6 Pillars for Making
Sunday School Teaching a Priority
Teaching isn't merely a profession; it's a calling, especially when the subject touches upon the tender strings of faith. For Sunday school teachers, the classroom is a sanctum, the lessons are the lifeblood, and the students are a treasured flock. But in the whirlwind of modern obligations, prioritizing Sunday school teaching can sometimes feel like an uphill spiritual marathon – challenging yet profoundly rewarding. Here, we will wade through the murk of our bustling schedules and rediscover the golden thread that binds us to the essence of teaching in our faith community.
Setting Clear Goals:
The Foundation of Purposeful Teaching
"There’s an opportune time to do things,
a right time for everything on the earth."
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (MSG)
First and foremost, look within to discern what you seek for your class to achieve. Is it fostering a love of scripture, nurturing an understanding of faith, or building a community within your walls? By defining these objectives, you set the cornerstone for the rest of your efforts.
- Write Down Your Aims: An unwritten goal is often an unmet goal. Plan with precision, detailing not just what you want to accomplish but also WHY it matters.
- Incorporate It into Your Lessons: Every activity and every story should serve a purpose.
Act on It: Begin with the end in mind, and you'll find that teaching with a clear purpose ignites a palpable and profound passion for learning learning. It was Bill Gates who said,"As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others." To stagnate is to deprive teaching of its irresistible lustre and potential for vibrant evolution!
Let's cherish each tick of the clock, for just as we are stewards of our faith, so too must we be stewards of our time. Intertwined with this pillar is the biblical wisdom from Ecclesiastes 3:1 -""To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven." (KJV)
The Taming of the Clock
Oh! Teach us to live well!
Teach us to live wisely and well!
Psalm 90:12, MSG
Some unknown author said, ""Time management is an art, an art of living that enhances the melody of life’s symphony." Wonderful quote, but pretty elusive author, right? Well, the elusive spectre of time often poses the most formidable challenge. However, with strategic planning, time becomes a mortal that can be managed rather than the divine immortal that it seems.
- Set Aside 'Lesson Hour': Just as Sunday service is sacred, designate a time during the week equally essential for your lesson preparation.
- Use Tools Wisely: Leverage planning apps, create thematic schedules, and set reminders for specific tasks. Time shouldn't be a tyrant but a trusty tool in your teaching arsenal!
As the psalmist said, "So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom." – Psalm 90:12 (KJV). So too, the dedicated teacher asserts: "I control my schedule. My time serves my vision, not the other way around!"
Teacher as Perpetual Student
Never walk away from Wisdom—she guards your life;
love her—she keeps her eye on you.
Above all and before all, do this: Get Wisdom!
Proverbs 4:7, MSG
To stagnate is to deprive teaching of its irresistible lustre and potential for vibrant evolution. True teachers always learn about their faith, pedagogy, and, most importantly, their students.
- Stay Informed About the Faith: Seek new interpretations, historical contexts, and theological viewpoints. Your grounding in the world can never be too deep!
- Embrace Teaching Workshops: These oases of knowledge often offer the freshest approaches to engaging young minds.
In the classroom of life, the role of the student is eternal. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding." – Proverbs 4:7 (KJV).As we learn, so we teach.
Building a Support Network:
Teachers Need a Village, Too
It’s better to have a partner than go it alone.
Share the work, share the wealth.
Ecclesiastes 4:9, MSG
You are not an isle, and teaching is seldom a solitary pursuit. In cultivating a community of support, you create an environment rich in knowledge and brimming with empathy, where ideas can freely intermingle and grow.
- Online Communities: Platforms like social media groups and forums are havens for shared struggles and communal victories.
- Church Gatherings: Don't just share your triumphs; voice your needs. The church's beauty is its unity in purpose and strength through service.
You have heard this verse many times: "Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour." – Ecclesiastes 4:9 (KJV) And I know you get that together, as a network, we sow the seeds of inspiration and cultivate a garden of teaching talent.
The Art of Captivation
My teaching, let it fall like a gentle rain,
my words arrive like morning dew,
Like a sprinkling rain on new grass,
like spring showers on the garden.
Deuteronomy 32:2, MSG
Engagement is the currency of the modern student; without it, the most valuable lessons may be brushed aside. But by injecting fun, creativity, and relevance, we pave the way for vibrant and participative interactions.
- Interactive Storytelling: Use props, acting, and even different voices. Immerse your students in the story so deeply that they emerge victorious with its moral and message.
- Create Challenges: A contest recalls Biblical narratives, while a puzzle reinforces a lesson about perseverance. Interweave fun with learning to create a fascinating tapestry of lessons.
In the chamber of a captivated mind, the light of learning burns eternally bright. "Let my teaching drop as the rain, my speech distill as the dew, as raindrops on the tender herb, and as showers on the grass." – Deuteronomy 32:2 (NKJV)
Parent and Church Involvement:
Elevation Through Partnership
"Let’s see how inventive we can be
in encouraging love and helping out..."
Hebrews 10:24, MSG
A cohesive partnership with parents and the broader church can provide invaluable support. A unified vision can yield the most robust and vibrant educational environment.
- Regular Updates: Share lesson themes and student progress with parents. It keeps them in the loop and invites them to participate in their child's spiritual journey.
- Tap into Church Resources: Collaborate to enrich the learning experience, whether it's another congregant's expertise or the church library's treasure trove.
The Hebrew writer said, "And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:" (Hebrews 10:24, KJV). In the chorus of a collaborative church, Sunday school becomes an orchestral symphony of spiritual growth.
You may have heard this time management story multiple times and it still rings true. In the symphony of our spiritual service, the unique timbre of Sunday school teaching should resonate with the priority it deserves. If teaching Sunday school doesn't ring true as a priority, is it something you should continue to do? That may sound harsh, but I think you know what I mean. If it DOES ring true as priority, you could embrace the outlined strategies not as restraints but as the scaffolding that elevates the experience for both teacher and student in prioritizing what matters in your CLASS.
As you prepare for the coming Sunday, let your teaching resonate with the clarity of purpose, the wisdom of continuous learning, the grit of a supportive network, the creativity of student engagement, and the power of community involvement. In doing so, you don't just teach; you transcend—touching lives, shaping hearts, and weaving eternal tales that dance in the glorified halls of memory.
Embrace these teachings, transmit them with verve, and relish the transformation. You, dear teacher, are:
- The everlasting beacon in the journey of faith.
- A guide to your students' future.
- A lodestar for all who seek the light.
Take what you've considered here and let your Sunday school teaching weave the miracles only faith can fathom. Shall we begin?