ONLINE HACKS

GROW KIDS | September 2020

HOW DO I ADAPT GROW KIDS CURRICULUM TO AN ONLINE-ONLY PROGRAM?

Hey, friends! We know you’re still trying to figure out how to do this “online church” thing, so for as long as this pandemic lasts, we’re going to be publishing monthly hacks for adapting Grow Kids Curriculum for an online-only program! These hacks are meant to be a starting point — don’t forget to add your own creativity to this outline!

INSTRUCTIONS

STEP 1: BUILD A WEEKLY STRATEGY

You’re going to need a weekly strategy that’s unique to your church. But don’t worry! We have some resources to help you decide what you’ll do and when. Check this out if you need some help building your new weekly plan for online children’s ministry:

  • FACEBOOK LIVE | 10 Tips for Building a Weekly Strategy for Online Kids Ministry (with Elle Campbell): Join our kids ministry Facebook group to watch this 1-hour workshop with Elle, where you’ll learn to build a weekly strategy and learn what other kids pastors are already doing well. WATCH
  • PODCAST | 10 Tips for Building a Weekly Strategy for Online Kids Ministry (from Kids Ministry Answers): Join our hosts TJ and Kellee for a conversation unpacking Elle’s tips and sharing ideas of their own. LISTEN
  • TRELLO BOARD | A Template for Online Kids Ministry: Grab our free Trello template to give you a structure you can customize and repeat each week for your ministry. VIEW

STEP 2: PLAN YOUR ONLINE KIDS SERVICE

By now, you’ve figured out that what works in person doesn’t exactly work online. Here’s a basic outline for an online service that you can use each week, using the curriculum you already have:

  • MUSIC: Sing two worship songs.
  • THE BIG IDEA: Share the Big Idea of the week.
  • SCRIPTURE: Tell the Bible story (or show the teaching video) and repeat the Big Idea.
  • DISCUSSION: Give families at least one question to discuss.

You can always add more elements if you’d like, but this is the basic formula you need for an effective online service — and with Grow Kids, you already have all of the elements you need to make it happen!

STEP 3: BUILD A LESSON GUIDE FOR PARENTS

Instead of talking to parents as if they’re only observers of what’s going on in your ministry, invite parents to participate as teachers and discussion-leaders for their kids! While families are watching church at home, equip parents with a weekly lesson guide that contains bite-sized versions of your curriculum that parents can teach with ease.

To create a simple lesson that parents can teach, edit the Word documents provided in your downloads to create a simple lesson for parents each week that follows this format:

  • THE BIG IDEA
  • SCRIPTURE
  • ACTIVITY
  • DISCUSSION
  • PRAYER
  • MEMORY VERSE

To make things extra easy for you, at the end of this post, we’ve identified the specific modules each week of the curriculum that we suggest including.

STEP 4: REPURPOSE (OR SKIP) THE REST OF THE LESSON

With Grow Kids, you get tons of activities, object lessons, videos, and more in each lesson! It might be sad to think you won’t get to use all of them during an online service, but there are ways you can still make use of those ideas! You can still make videos of object lessons and post them online! You can send parents the instructions for activities and games so they can play them at home!

At the end of this post, we’ve identified a few specific modules for each week of the curriculum that we suggest repurposing.

HACKS FOR EACH WEEK

WEEK 1: God helps us when we are helpless.

ONLINE KIDS SERVICE

Use these modules from your lesson to create your online service:

  • MUSIC | “Nothing is Impossible”
  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us when we are helpless.
  • SCRIPTURE | Moses in a Basket: Exodus 1:22-2:10
  • VIDEO | Help! Episode 1

 

LESSON GUIDE FOR PARENTS

Use these modules from your lesson to create a lesson guide for parents:

  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us when we are helpless.
  • SCRIPTURE | Moses in a Basket: Exodus 1:22-2:10
  • ACTIVITY | Helpers Help Me (Elementary) or ACTIVITY | Who Do You Call for Help? (Preschool)
  • DISCUSSION | Give families at least one question to discuss together.
  • PRAYER
  • MEMORY VERSE | Psalm 121:2 (NIV)

 

EXTRA IDEAS

Skip or repurpose the remaining modules in your curriculum however you’d like! But here are a few ideas…

  • SCRIPTURE | Matthew 18:19-20 Using the graphics we’ve provided in your downloads, create an image of this Bible verse and post it on social media during the week, along with a suggestion for families to read and discuss it together.
  • MEMORY VERSE | MEMORY VERSE MOVES Challenge families to do this activity to one specific song. Ask families to send in a video of their family’s dance. Compile them all into one epic video.
  • STORY | Talk About a Time That You Felt Hopeless Ask parents to think of a time they felt hopeless and share with their kids.
WEEK 2: God helps us in our weakness.

ONLINE KIDS SERVICE

Use these modules from your lesson to create your online service:

  • MUSIC | “We Will Go”
  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us in our weakness.
  • SCRIPTURE | God calls Moses: Exodus 3:1-14, 4:1-17
  • VIDEO | Help! Episode 2

 

LESSON GUIDE FOR PARENTS

Use these modules from your lesson to create a lesson guide for parents:

  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us in our weakness.
  • SCRIPTURE | God calls Moses: Exodus 3:1-14, 4:1-17
  • ACTIVITY | I Am Charades (Elementary) or ACTIVITY | Break or Balance? (Preschool)
  • DISCUSSION | Give families at least one question to discuss together.
  • PRAYER
  • MEMORY VERSE | Psalm 121:2 (NIV)

 

EXTRA IDEAS

Skip or repurpose the remaining modules in your curriculum however you’d like! But here are a few ideas…

  • MEMORY VERSE | Peek-A-Verse Post instructions on your social media platforms. Encourage families to do this in a common space in their home, such as on the fridge. Have families take turns playing this game during the week.
  • QUESTION | Are Heroes Weak? Post the question on social media then have families post a gif or meme of their favorite “tough” character in the comments.
WEEK 3: God helps us when we are in trouble.

ONLINE KIDS SERVICE

Use these modules from your lesson to create your online service:

  • MUSIC | “Bueno es Dios”
  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us when we are in trouble.
  • SCRIPTURE | The Plagues and the Passover: Exodus 7:14-10:29, 12:21-3
  • VIDEO | Help! Episode 3

 

LESSON GUIDE FOR PARENTS

Use these modules from your lesson to create a lesson guide for parents:

  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us when we are in trouble.
  • SCRIPTURE | The Plagues and the Passover: Exodus 7:14-10:29, 12:21-3
  • ACTIVITY | Waiting For Rescue (Elementary) or ACTIVITY | Big Idea Bridge (Preschool)
  • DISCUSSION | Give families at least one question to discuss together.
  • PRAYER
  • MEMORY VERSE | Psalm 121:2 (NIV)

 

EXTRA IDEAS

Skip or repurpose the remaining modules in your curriculum however you’d like! But here are a few ideas…

  • ACTIVITY | Who Can God Send? Ask three volunteers to share each of the scenarios. Post one video a day during the week. 
  • MEMORY VERSE | In-Verse-Tigation Encourage families to do this activity at home! Inside or outside.
  • SNACK | Paint the Door Share this idea for a tasty afternoon snack or side dish for dinner.
WEEK 4: God helps us help others.

ONLINE KIDS SERVICE

Use these modules from your lesson to create your online service:

  • MUSIC | “We Will Go”
  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us help others.
  • SCRIPTURE | God Provides Food and Water: Exodus 15:22-25, 16:1-16
  • VIDEO | Help! Episode 4

 

LESSON GUIDE FOR PARENTS

Use these modules from your lesson to create a lesson guide for parents:

  • THE BIG IDEA | God helps us help others.
  • SCRIPTURE | God Provides Food and Water: Exodus 15:22-25, 16:1-16
  • ACTIVITY | Helpful Word (Elementary) or ACTIVITY | Manna Toss (Preschool)
  • DISCUSSION | Give families at least one question to discuss together.
  • PRAYER
  • MEMORY VERSE | Psalm 121:2 (NIV)

 

EXTRA IDEAS

Skip or repurpose the remaining modules in your curriculum however you’d like! But here are a few ideas…

  • SCRIPTURE | Philippians 2:1-4 Using the graphics we’ve provided in your downloads, create an image of this Bible verse and post it on social media during the week, along with a suggestion for families to read and discuss it together.
  • POLL | Helping Counts Choose one scenario a day to post. Ask families to post a photo of themselves holding up the number of fingers representing the scale in the activity.
  • MEMORY VERSE | Life Preser-verse Give the instructions to this activity for families to do at home together.

SHARE YOUR IDEAS!

We’d love to hear how you’re adapting Grow Kids Curriculum to work for an online format! Come join us in the Stuff You Can Use Children’s Ministry Facebook Group and share what you’re doing — we’d love to learn from you.