As a millennial, I often wrestle with how to engage technology in children’s ministry. It often seems like we have to compete for the attention of our kids against the tidal wave of big budget animation, shorter attention spans and thousands of other activities. In a time when many people are addicted to their phones and social media, I wonder whether we should encourage the use of media, completely avoid it, or find some middle ground. Should we engage in a way that our children are familiar with and already connect to? Is there a way to approach engaging technology in ministry that won’t encourage kids to become addicted to technology or absorb the messages we receive from our culture through technology?
Here are my top 8 ways to engage technology and social media in children’s ministry.
1) Social Media can be a great tool for advertising events and connecting with volunteers and parents. Many people check social media multiple times a day and can easily engage. Let people know about an event beforehand or post pictures and videos afterwards.
2) Create a PowerPoint or Prezi to provide visuals for your Bible or skill lesson. Kids with a visual learning style will appreciate being able to see the information in front of them.
3) Short videos might show an object, place, or idea that might be difficult to communicate verbally. Show a video clip that takes children to where a biblical story actually took place!
4) Play a sound clip that coincides with a drama or use as part of a game.
5) Don’t have someone musically gifted who volunteers in your children’s ministry? Use videos to play songs, and project words and motions onto a screen to engage a time of musical worship.
6) There are many great apps which can be purchased to assist in check-in. Utilize one of these programs on a tablet or computer as an easy and paper-friendly way to provide security.
7) Encourage kids to use computers, phones or tablets to look up and research something to help them understand a word’s definition, verse, or story in the Bible better. Equip them with tools to study the Bible on their own!
8) Follow a few children’s ministry blogs or newsletters. As teachers, we are always learners. You are not alone in serving. There are tons of other leaders to connect with and swap stories of encouragement, samples and experience.
We should engage technology and social media as a tool. Media should never become the main focus of what we do. Teaching the Bible, proclaiming the gospel and shaping young hearts to follow Christ in every aspect of their lives: that, for me, is the heart of children’s ministry.
How have you used technology in your ministry? Share your ideas in the comment section below.
About The Author:
Alisha Henricksen serves as the Sales and Editorial Coordinator at Pioneer Clubs. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Bible and Children’s Ministry from Moody Bible Institute. She has served in children’s ministry (10 years) and camp ministry (3 years). When she is not working at Pioneer Clubs, she also serves as the Children’s Ministry Coordinator at a local church. She enjoys books, movies, coffee, donuts and spending quality time with friends and family. Her passion is to equip the church and families to disciple children and to raise the next generation to love the Lord with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength.