Wednesday, December 12, 2012

How do Theme and Setting Impact Your Choice of VBS?

When it comes to selecting VBS you first of all have to determine your goal for your Vacation Bible School and have considered if the lessons intentionally engage your children in the teaching of the lesson and give them opportunities to live what they've learned. Doing this should help you narrow down your choices and once you have, it is time to consider the Scope and Sequence, Theme and Setting. First of all, consider the scope and sequence. What are the Bible lessons? Keep in mind which Bible lessons you taught last year and find out what the current scope and sequence is for your Sunday school. If possible, try to find a scope which does not cover lessons taught in last year's VBS or in recent history during Sunday School. Consider your goals for VBS and think about how the scope and sequence supports your goal.

Once you've considered the scope and sequence, look at the theme - what is the main focus of the VBS? In my Top Ten VBS Countdown for 2013 you will find a breakdown of Scope and Sequence, Theme and Setting for each of the VBS resources I review this year. Each VBS has a theme; this year the publishers have done an excellent job of focusing their VBS to teach a main theme - several are focusing on trusting God and all have a specific Bible theme/focus. This is where having a goal for your VBS comes in - compare the VBS themes with your goals . . . it should help you narrow down your choices even more!

Finally, after you've considered scope and sequence and theme, look at the settings. Too often when it comes to selecting a VBS we look at the setting, think one looks "fun" and make our selection. Certainly the setting is important, but it absolutely should not be the first thing you think about when it comes to selecting the VBS resource you will use. Think about the settings you've used in the past couple years and if possible look for something new 
and different, but do not determine your VBS choice based on setting alone. Once you've looked at how the lessons are taught - if they intentionally engage your children and give them opportunities to live what they've learned, considered scope, sequence and theme, the setting can then be the component which helps you narrow your selection to the final choice or two.

Feel free to join in the conversations and comment about your ministry . . . I'd love to hear your thoughts about 2013 VBS!

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