By La Donna Yap
Children’s Ministry plays a significant role in setting the foundations of faith in a child’s life. It could be the first place where a child encounters Jesus Christ. While parents remain as the most important faith influencers in their children’s life, Children’s Ministry comes alongside to help them rear their precious ones in the Kingdom of God.
In this light, JECPP empowers the Children’s Church teachers of EFC in Marilog District, Davao City on May 22, 2014 and in EFC-Kidapawan (with Del Sur, South Cotabato and SOCCSKSARGEN Regions) on May 29, 2014 by giving them a Seminar-Workshop on Teaching Children. A total of 57 teachers joined the said training from 23 Southern Mindanao EFC churches.
The one day seminar-workshop was designed and facilitated by Sis. Cecille Gacasan and Sis. La Donna Yap, experienced Children’s Church teachers of EFC-Davao. Both facilitators emphasized that Bible Teaching doesn’t have to be dull and drab. Teachers do not have to get stuck in ruts. They demonstrated the methodology in teaching children, such as drawing and crafts, demonstration, dramatization, question and answer, drills and games, music and action songs and storytelling.
Moreover, teachers were also taught to outline or plan their bible lessons effectively. The objectives are to help the students remember the details of the story (e.g. names and characters, places, etc.); understand the conditions in the story; apply the details in real life situations that students can relate to; analyze the word of God and how the message affects the child’s everyday life; evaluate the circumstances of the characters in the story and make connections with students’ experiences and create their personal reflections or conclusion of the story. Explaining the bible verses before asking the students to memorize it was emphasized as well.
Aside from equipping the teachers with the knowledge and skills in teaching effectively, they were also given time to share their testimonies, struggles and burden in their respective ministry. These gave them the chance to relate to each other and to encourage each other. All of them shared that the training is a refreshment for them and that it put springs on their steps to teach their classes in the coming Sundays.
Indeed, teaching children is not easy, and success is not immediate, but the rewards are sure and eternal as Jesus said in Matt. 19:14, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”