In a previous post I responded to the question “Lecture is Good to Use with Adults, Right?” with that it depends on your objective.
- Are you teaching primarily for head knowledge or do you want to see lives transformed?
- Are you seeking to reach some of your students or potentially all of them?
If Bible teachers want to teach for changed lives and potentially reach all of their students, then they must get beyond lecture.
I can hear some teachers of adult classes still saying, “I have no choice but to use lecture.” Below are some reasons they might give for why they feel that lecture is their only option.
1) “I would never get through the lesson if I didn’t lecture.”
Perhaps these teachers are trying to teach too much in one setting. The greater the amount of content, the less likely you will be to employ other methods.
2) “My class is too big to use other methods.”
Maybe these teachers need to think outside of the box on ways they can get a large group of students more actively involved. It is true that the bigger the group size, the less opportunity there will be for each individual to meaningfully participate but there are ways to engage everyone. They could break the class into smaller groups or neighbor nudge to discuss a question, have students write down their responses and then ask only a few to share what they wrote, get them physically responding to questions by raise of hands or standing, etc. And, when they must use lecture, accompany it with visuals, handouts, and good illustrations.
3) “I don’t know other methods that would work with adults.”
Undoubtedly these teachers are stuck in a rut and need help seeing the possibilities. They might need a little help being more creative. Perhaps this worksheet would help them: Creativity: Variety is One Element
Occasional lecture due to the type or amount of content might be necessary in an adult Bible class, but if teachers consistently use only lecture then help them see that they do have a choice.