How To Take Children’s Ministry Online
You already know that starting a church ministry is a worthwhile effort, but now more than ever, starting an online ministry is super important. Yes, teaching children in person is the best option, but here are so many reasons why you should take your children’s ministry online.
WHY SETTING UP ONLINE CHILDREN’S MINISTRY MATTERS
Starting an online ministry doesn’t mean replacing your in-person children’s ministry. Instead, think of this as expanding and supplementing your church ministry. In 2022, there are all sorts of reasons to take your kids ministry online. We can think of a few:
- Bad weather
- Greater reach for your children’s ministry
- Families or kids who don’t attend church regularly
- Families who can’t attend in person because of illness, special needs, travel, etc.
But knowing it’s a great idea isn’t enough. In order to take action, you could use a little help. We’ve got you covered!
HOW TO MAKE YOUR ONLINE KIDS MINISTRY HAPPEN
Ready to take your kids ministry online? Yes, but how? Maybe you’re concerned because you:
- Aren’t very tech-savvy
- Are out of time
- Don’t know how to adapt your kids curriculum to an online experience
- Don’t have time or energy to rethink your whole teaching strategy
No worries! We’ll walk you through the steps on how to start an online ministry for children.
First, choose a format for your online children’s ministry:
- Post a pre-recorded teaching video online.
- Produce a complete online service.
Next, choose your effort level:
- LEVEL 1: Super Easy
- For the weeks when you don’t have much time (or energy).
- LEVEL 2: A Little More Effort
- For when you have a little more time. And have taken a nap.
- LEVEL 3: Lots of Effort
- For the weeks you have lots of creativity and time on your hands.
We’ve got the instructions for starting an online ministry with Level 1 effort – right below (or adapt for your children’s ministry).
The Instructions for Level 1:
Follow the instructions below to establish your kids’ online ministry through planning resources, teaching and programming resources, discipleship activities, volunteer and parent resources, and events.
Annual Planning: Plan your Teaching and Programming Strategies by having an Annual Planning Meeting to prepare and lay out the plans for the whole year, if possible.
Teaching: Depending on which format you choose – Post your pre-recorded Elementary and Preschool Teaching Videos. –or– Pre-record and share a shortened version of your typical weekly service that includes elements from your in-person ministry, possibly: a worship song, the Big Idea, the Bible Story, and one discussion question that families can discuss together at home.
Programming: Choose one or two decorating ideas that align with your program and use them to create a backdrop for your Teaching Videos or Online Services.
Discipleship: Send your Discipleship Activity for the quarter to your volunteers or families, and ask them to lead their kids through the experience. Make sure that it’s simple for them to follow and does not require too much prep.
Volunteers: Send a Volunteer Email every week, and include the link or log-in information they’ll need to access your online ministry teaching for the week. You can also promote and communicate on social media.
Families: Send a Family Email every month, and include the link or log-in information they’ll need to access your children’s online ministry teaching for the series. You can also promote and communicate with families on social media.
Events: Skip the events! Send surprises in the mail to help kids and families connect with you and your online ministry in the meantime.
For Level 2 or Level 3 Instructions, please check out our Grow Kids Online Guide and adjust the Grow-user-specific steps to fit your own online children’s ministry.
THE TOOLS YOU’LL NEED TO MAKE ONLINE KIDS MINISTRY HAPPEN
You may be wondering what is required to setup your online ministry besides the planning. Yes, there are tools you’ll need! We’ve broken them down into the must-haves and the suggested tools to help you out.
- Your church’s website or social media profiles (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc.)
- A children’s curriculum you’ve purchased or created (like Grow Curriculum, which comes with Online Hacks for every series that are already done for you)
- Tools to communicate with your people:
- An email service (MailChimp, Constant Contact, or similar)
- Hubs from Stuff You Can Use for communicating with families and volunteers (combines calendar events, announcements and private messaging all in one location)
- Texting services (Clearstream, Flocknote, or similar)
- A camera or two (your phone will work!)
- A microphone (affordable microphone choices for online teaching)
- A tool to stream to Facebook (LiveReacting or BeLive)
- Video editing software (video editing choices)
- Graphics editing software (Photoshop, Canva, or free graphics editing choices)
- Zoom for group discussions
Now that you have the steps, instructions, and tools for starting a children’s online ministry, are you ready to change your church for the better?
HOW CHILDREN’S ONLINE MINISTRY CAN CHANGE YOUR CHURCH FOR THE BETTER
Your children’s ministry is so important and starting an online ministry doesn’t replace it, but supplements it. Consider the following ways that starting an online ministry can make your awesome church even better…
- Keep families and kids connected online when you can’t meet in person.
- Expand the reach for your children’s ministry when your people share with their networks or the algorithms recommend your ministry to others.
- Kids who don’t attend church regularly (through no choice of their own) can still stay connected and not feel alienated.
- Families of kids with special needs or who are experiencing illness or tragedy don’t have to be disconnected from your ministry.
- Give guests or potential visitors an inside look at your children’s ministry before they arrive because coming to a new church can be intimidating.
- Give parents an opportunity to be involved with their kid’s church experience at home.
Ready to take your children’s ministry online? We’re excited for you to take that step! And remember, you can always choose Grow Kids Curriculum to give you all the teaching and tools in one shot, done-for-you, and follow the included online hacks to take your program online.
Every teaching series in Grow Kids comes with a set of Online Hacks to help you easily convert your curriculum into an online church service for kids and families, using the formats we’ve given you in this post.
The Grow Team
A team packed with pastors, ministry leaders, writers, editors, designers, project managers, app developers, and more! The Grow Team works to bring curriculum and ministry strategy to church leaders everywhere.