Thursday, October 15, 2015

REACH OUT: The Preschool Connection

Some congregations have very successful preschools but they seem separate from the congregation. I've had people ask me how to build a bridge to their preschool families and my answer is always the same... "Show them Jesus!" What a great blessing that God has brought the mission field INTO YOUR CHURCH!

How do you serve your preschool families?
  • Find out about them.  How many are divorced?  How many have single parents?  How many have other kids in the family and what are their ages?
  • Offer single parents support through free babysitting once or twice a month to give them a break.
  • Have a group of people who like to cook prepare some one-dish meals for some of the families in need or single parents.
  • Involve members in Bible story time. Have them share their favorite Bible stories. (They can show, tell, or read from a children's Bible.)
  • Include a service component in your confirmation classes where the kids are required to volunteer so many hours a month in the preschool.  Have the director or teachers make lists of service opportunities.
  • Have members volunteer to watch the kids on the playground so the teachers can have some meeting or work time.
  • Involve the kids in worship services on a regular basis to get families to mingle with the congregation.
  • Provide preschool activity bags to help keep the kids busy during worship and include small bags of appropriate treats (that won't cause a mess in the sanctuary).
  • Have a clothing and/or toy swap.
  • Write a focus article on a preschool family in your newletter so people can get to know them.  Give them a special gift for participating.
  • During church events have prizes such as a meal a week for a month, 3 months, a semester, or longer.
A preschool can be a great addition to a church community and many people think they will bring families into the church and they will. If the community is a reflection of Jesus, they won't help but be drawn in.  Show them Jesus!

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