Web site offers ideas for Sunday school

Does your congregation’s Sunday-school program need higher visibility?
Lori Aadsen, associate director of children’s ministry with the Board for District and Congregational Services, makes 30 suggestions to do just that in the summer issue of Teachers Interaction, a quarterly magazine from Concordia Publishing House meant primarily for teachers.
To download Aadsen’s article in PDF format from the Web, go to www.lcms.org/?1686 and click on “30 Ways to Enhance Sunday School Visibility.”
“Your church has a place where God’s love is shared with every student, every week,” Aadsen writes, “where your church assists parents with their task of teaching the Christian faith to their children…. Do the people of your congregation know about this valuable program?”
Aadsen suggests 10 ideas for Sunday schools during the fall “rally day” — “a fantastic time to raise the visibility of your Sunday school.”  They include planning worship services around Christian education and children’s ministry, members sending cards and gifts to Sunday-school children and teachers, and fellowship opportunities after services celebrating the new Sunday-school year.
“Teacher recognition and affirmation is not a one-time endeavor,” Aadsen writes, as she offers “ways to affirm your staff throughout the year.” 
“Get the congregation involved in gift giving not only at the beginning of the school year but all year round,” she says.  Aadsen suggests that gifts for volunteer teachers could be seasonal, homemade, or take the form of “cards or thank-you booklets made by children and/or parents.”
Events such as meals, parties, ethnic celebrations, concerts and guest presentations also can draw attention to Sunday-school ministry, according to Aadsen.
Interviews with Sunday-school teachers during worship services, featuring them in church publications, and remembering them and children with cards on their birthdays or other special occasions are among suggestions she offers.
She offers a number of “touch points” for congregations to shore up their Sunday schools, including welcome letters to new families in the congregation, home devotions from the Sunday school, brochures, “hands-on” take-home activities for the whole family, parent-teacher conferences and home visits.
“Congregations that prepare and plan for children are often churches that welcome everyone!” Aadsen says.
To order subscriptions to Teachers Interaction, call CPH at (800) 325-3381. Costs per year are $15 each for 1-5 subscriptions, $13 for 6-10 and $11 for 11 or more.
For more information about Aadsen’s suggestions, contact her at (281) 480-7317; lori-aadsen@ghg.net.

Posted June 25, 2004

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