How many times have you planned your lesson on a Saturday night while also trying to watch SNL? How often do you pray for red lights on the way to mid-week so the Holy Spirit can “lead you” to come up with something to talk about once you get there (as if the Holy Spirit can’t lead you a few days ahead of time!)? If you’re like Josh, this has happened more than a few times, and if you’re like Kurt, it has happened WAY more than a few times.
We all know that few things are less sexy than planning out a teaching calendar. We also know that few things are more important. But where do you start? Today we want to share with you ONE strategy for creating a teaching calendar. There are lots of approaches…but here’s one of the ways we do it ourselves.
CONSIDER TEACHING IN “THIRDS”
We like to break our teaching into three primary categories: Christian Education, Life Skills, and Felt Need. We try to spend approximately one-third of our teaching calendar in each category. We don’t cling to the schedule, but use it as a loose guideline.
CONSIDER TEACHING IN SERIES
We try to teach each topic in a 3-week series format. The primary reason is simply because it’s tough to cover a subject in one 30-minute lesson. A series-driven calendar allows you to take a longer, more expansive look at the topic on hand.
CONSIDER THE HOLIDAYS AND TIMELY EVENTS
As you prepare your calendar, and as you pencil in the various series at the various times, pay close attention to where Holidays fall and plan the right series at the right time. Consider timely events such as back-to-school season, New Year, and the Prom to help spark creative and timely lessons.
You’ve probably heard (and agree with) the mantra that goes something like this: “Your students will never remember your lesson…but they will remember your relationship with them.” And while that’s almost universally true, lets not make the mistake of using that as an excuse for poor planning when it comes to sharing the good news of Jesus Christ.
Have some tips for planning a teaching calendar? Share them in the comments!
This post was written by Josh Griffin and originally appeared as part of Simply Youth Ministry Today free newsletter. Subscribe to SYM Today right here.