Published: December 15, 2023
As a Sunday school leader, you want to ensure that your ministry has a solid foundation—and that includes your team. Consider these practical tips for building a strong Sunday school team.
There’s so much involved in creating a dynamic Sunday school team. As you build your team, there are four important factors to keep in mind.
1. Clarify job descriptions.
It’s important to create a job description for each role on your team. Clearly outline the time commitment, the responsibilities, the benefits of the role, and any other expectations. Check out this sample Sunday school director job description.
2. Place people in their “sweet spot.”
Take time to find out each person’s gifts and passions. Don’t place people where you need them to fill a gap. Instead, place them where they’re gifted. When people are in their sweet spot, serving is energizing.
3. Build mentorship into your team structure.
Create a culture where each teacher or team member intentionally mentors another teacher or team member as everyone serves together. In other words, the leader invests in key teachers who can one day be Sunday school leaders. A key teacher prepares assistant teachers to become key teachers one day. An assistant teacher prepares room assistants to be assistant teachers one day.
4. Plan for appropriate adult-to-child ratios.
Check with your state’s law-required adult-to-ratios first, and then build a set ratio into the foundation of your Sunday school. Here’s an example ratio:
- infants: 1 to 2
- crawlers: 1 to 3
- toddlers and twos: 1 to 4
- threes and fours: 1 to 8
- fives through sixth graders: 1 to 10
Having a good adult-to-child ratio is critical to the success of your ministry. Here’s why.
Effective learning is possible.
You can move from “crowd control” to interactive, hands-on learning.
Teachers can supervise children more closely, which leads to fewer accidents. And things such as fire evacuation plans are more efficient.
Teacher retention goes up.
Nothing causes burnout faster than putting teachers or team members in a room where the ratio is way out of proportion. They’ll leave frustrated, wondering whether they can do it again next week. When you honor ratios, you’re honoring your team.
Parent confidence increases.
Parents feel comfortable leaving children with you when adult-to-child ratios are correct. A new family looking into an overcrowded room will be hesitant to leave their kids—or they won’t come back.
The children enjoy the experience more.
Children experience stress when they’re in crowded situations where there is a lack of toys, personal attention, and personal space for play. Proper ratios help kids relax, have fun, and learn.
Establishing a strong team is the first step to building a strong Sunday school program at your church. When the going is rough, trust that God is truly the one leading your Sunday school program. So trust God to work through your efforts to serve kids well!
This excerpt comes from Group’s Sunday School That Works! This resource is designed specifically to help you strengthen and enrich your Sunday school ministry while maximizing what you’re already doing on Sundays. For even more leader tips, check out these posts!
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