Too often we are so busy with "ministry", we do not stop to evaluate where we have been, where we are and where we are heading. If we do not evaluate, we will not be able to really tell if we are being genuinely effective, or not.
We can not make changes we need to make if we do not know we need to make them; so regularly evaluating what we do is an essential part of our Children's Ministries. What should we evaluate? Consider the following . . .
- We need to evaluate our curriculum on a regular basis.
- We need to evaluate our communication with volunteers and parents/grandparents on a regular basis.
- We need to evaluate the impact our ministry is having on children on a regular basis.
Evaluate curriculum -
- At least once a quarter (or month or week) you should be asking your teachers if they were able to engage the children in the lessons they are teaching.
- At least once a quarter (or month or week) you should be asking teachers if they are able to use the curriculum as it is written or if they have to "tweak" it to make it usable.
Evaluate communication -
- Take an honest look at what you currently do to communicate with parents/grandparents and volunteers. Do you do so regularly - at least once a quarter - or do you do so only when you have to for specific events?
- At least once a quarter (or month or week)do you send an email to let parents/grandparents know what their children will be learning and give them ideas of things they can do at home to continue to learning?
- Do you have a Children's Ministry website/blog which you update every week or at least every month with information for families and volunteers? If not, why?
- How often do you communicate with your volunteers? Do you send an email each week to let volunteers know about upcoming important dates, special events and weekly lessons?
- Do you regularly - at least once a quarter (or month or week) express your appreciation to your volunteers?
Evaluate impact on children -
- At least once a quarter you should be asking children what they can remember learning in the previous quarter (or month or week). If children are not able to tell you what they learned, then you can be pretty confident they are not learning.
- At least once a quarter (or month or week) you should be asking children how they lived what they learned. Again, if children are not able to tell you how they lived what they learned, then you are not taking the Bible beyond "facts" to store in our brains to actions we live in our lives.
- At least once a quarter (or month or week) you should be asking children how they have been able to grow in their walk with Jesus.
You may think you are just too busy to do these things, but these are actually essential things for us to do if we are serious about being effective in our ministry. If we do not know what we have, are and will be doing and evaluate our effectiveness in these areas, how can we possibly know if we are effective? If we are not really being effective, then it is possible we have been distracted from what really matters.
Go through your schedule and do what you have to to make time to regularly evaluate your ministry - it is truly essential for your ministry to be genuinely effective.