Discovery Land Blog

I Thought This Was Obvious: A Lesson In Training Others

Discovery Land - Thursday, July 26, 2018

As I was standing in line at the Sacramento Airport, I noticed this safety sign posted in a prominent place so everyone could see it. I thought was, "Isn't that obvious? No guns, no smoking, no explosives, no in incendiary devices. Did you really need to post this? Haven't we all heard this a million times?"

After shaking my head, I paused and realized that this was my perspective, as someone who travels regularly. For others, this may be the first time they've ever flown, or maybe they haven't flown in a very long time. I also remembered that one time a mission trip colleague, also a seasoned traveler, inadvertently packed a very long knife in her carry on bag for a trip to the jungle, which is obviously not allows. Whoops!

So I guess the obvious isn't always so...obvious! This is a principle to remember as we prepare to train our volunteers for a new season of ministry. As leaders, we eat, sleep, and breathe children's ministry, but that is not the case for our most of our volunteers.

So let's remember:
1) Repetition is key. Do no assume that volunteers fully understood an idea or instruction the first time.

2) Make your key points big, simple and obvious. Be bold and just say what you need to say. For example: "We expect our kids to listen and obey while in class because we value them learning and living out the Word of God."

3) Avoid big words. What does incendiary even mean? It means "(of a device or attack) designed to cause fires" by the way. If you want to make your point clear, use words that the average person can readily understand and apply.

Your whole ministry will benefit when you look at your training through the lens of others!


Discovery Land - Tuesday, May 31, 2016
By: Amanda Alberts

As children’s ministry leaders, what is the number one resource God has provided? It’s not the curriculum or the supplies. It's the volunteers! Our Teachers, Discover Time leaders, Shepherds, One2One leaders, welcome team and cafe volunteers are critically important. It would be nearly impossible to run Sunday morning without the men, women and students who give their time and talents to Bring the Bible to Life.

One big way to invest in your volunteers is through training and equipping them. We kick off each new ministry season (summer/school year) with a very focused and intentional volunteer training session. Here are some of the ways we made the most of our most recent round of training.

1. Make it welcoming.

2. Keep it looking professional.

3. Mix it up! Change up the usual rows of chairs and speaker-style training and instead set up opportunities for conversation and fellowship-style learning.
  • Arrange tables and chairs in a welcoming, relaxed manner
  • Assign a personal trainer to each table to direct conversation
  • Place training materials at each table for trainers
  • Offer a meal or snacks
  • Play a fun icebreaker game
  • Main speaker keeps schedule and directs training
  • Leave time for short question and answer at tables

4. After group training, allow time for individual teams to meet and also provide a break out session for each specific position (teacher, shepherd, welcome team, ect.)

5. Give specific examples of study material and visual aids.

6. Send them home with a challenge to memorize the DL Top 12! Have a fun way to display the names or faces of those who participate.

7. Invest in in your volunteers, share the vision and equip them to in turn invest in our Discovery Land kids! They take their time to come to training, let’s be sure to take our time to make it a fun, interactive and effective time together!