Salvation Army Canada - e-TIPS for Youth Workers
e-TIPS for Youth Workers

e-TIPS: tips for youth workers                                                                                                     APRIL 2018

MAY I HAVE SOME ASSISTANCE PLEASE!

Do you find yourself juggling week after week to manage what is happening with your classroom ministry?  If you work with younger children you know that there is always someone who needs to visit the bathroom, someone who needs help with glue or scissors.  If you work with older children there is usually someone who just needs a quiet friend to sit with them and encourage them to be a part of the lesson.

Volunteers in the classroom are invaluable!  But value in the classroom is directly proportional to your ability to partner with them.  Here are a few ideas to encourage your classroom assistants:

  1. Take the time to let them know what is happening.  Spend time telling them about the lesson you will be teaching, the activities the kids will be involved in, what is the goal of the activities or games you will be playing, how they can help with the lesson or activities.
  2. Outside of class time let them know which children you would like them to shadow.  Who in your class always seems to be on the edge and needs someone to draw him out?  Who in your class needs a gentle touch on the shoulder to remind her of the classroom rules?  A volunteer can be invaluable to you if you clearly identify this part of their role.
  3. Clearly define what you want their role to be in the classroom.  Are they responsible to escort children to the washrooms down the hall and back?  Are they there to provide crowd control and how do you want them to handle situations that may arise?  Be sure you don’t overwhelm them and send them running in the other direction.
  4. Ask your volunteer assistant for input.  Do they think that Johnny will get too excited and lose focus during the review game you have planned?  Can they remember something that you did previously that helped make a connection with Anita your shy class member?
  5. Spend a few minutes reviewing your class or group time with your volunteer assistant.  Find out their perspective on what went well, what needs improving and whether they feel the Bible truth connection was made.  Be willing and open to listen to what they have to say and what they observed.
  6. Above all show your appreciation.  Just as we enjoy being acknowledged for our work that we do, it’s important that you show your appreciation to your volunteer assistants.  Let them know that your success in the classroom is due to their support of your ministry.

Time with our young people is limited.  Recruiting classroom or ministry volunteer assistants who are willing to be a part of the ministry will allow you to give energy to teaching the lesson.  Having a volunteer who is informed and encouraged will help you reach your ministry goals.


 

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