Since we cannot meet in person at church for children’s ministry we have the opportunity to take children’s ministry online!
If you have not previously used a lot of digital resources for your children’s ministry it might seem a bit overwhelming to think of how to suddenly do digital ministry exclusively. Or you might be wondering how you could do this and how much it might cost you.
I hope this post will help provide you with resources to get you started on going digital with children’s ministry and supporting families in faith formation. There is so much available, and becoming available every day, much of it free for you to make use of. This post has several key resources to get you started. But please so not let this list overwhelm you! Pick one to two ways that you think will be most effective to care for and minister to the families and children in your community. The key is to intentionally connect!
If you do not already, be sure to follow us on Facebook for more ideas and resources. Follow us on Instagram, and invite your families to also follow us for daily posts of fun ideas, conversation starters and faith forming opportunities to do at home and particularly while in isolation.
There was a 30 minute Zoom connection for ministry leaders to discuss opportunities/questions in engaging kids and families digitally on March 18. You can listen to the recording here.
Perhaps you’ve used Zoom before for meetings, perhaps you’ve joined a Zoom call CBOQ or other organizations have hosted for meetings or webinars. Zoom is a fantastic and easy platform to use for teaching too! Check out this resource: Tips_and_Tricks_for_Teachers_Educating_on_Zoom
Edmodo is another free online learning platform. You will find helpful tutorials on how to use it. This is another great option for connecting kids and parents for learning.
You can use Facebook Live and Facebook groups to connect with people. Many people are on Facebook so this might be a great way to connect with your community. You can create a closed Facebook group for your families where you can post resources, ideas, etc. Using Facebook live allows you to either connect in real time together if you plan a specific time to go live, or alternatively you can save your live videos for families to view later when they are able to.
Many families likely have cell phones so you could consider texting reminders of online interactions, prayers, encouragements or ideas to families. There are a variety of texting apps (free) that you can use with iOS and Android. Check out:
GroupMe – app and web-based interface, Telegram—app and web-based interface, WhatsApp and Viber
Resources Available Online:
Prayer and Worship in Our Homes: A 5 session course from ChurchNext of some alternative ways to engage in prayer and worship. This could be a resource you suggest to families to work through on their own or you might consider hosting it on Zoom or Edmodo.
Amplify Media: This resource from Cokesbury has made a lot of content available for free.
Seeds Family Worship: Free songs and Scriptures available.
Yancy: Stream Yancy music for free. This could be a great way to lead families/kids in online worship experiences! Download this resource: YM-Corona-Resource-Options-FINAL
Step Into my Shoes: Compassion resource families can use at home.
Open Network: Complete Online Kids Services. For ages 2 through grade 6.
The Parent Cue: This is an excellent app for parents of kids 0 through 18. Daily bible verses/videos, conversation starters and tips. There is also a website with helpful resources.