Have you ever noticed how the holiday season from Thanksgiving to Christmas to New Year’s just seems to zoom by? Personal schedules are busier than ever. The Church puts on special holiday programs, activities, and parties. Many Bible teachers, even those who truly love to teach, might struggle to find time and motivation to prepare their lessons. Do you really want to stick teacher training into the mix?
Let’s face it, the holidays bring lots of distractions and little time for teacher training. Push a meeting and it may be poorly attended or if teachers do come, their hearts and minds might not be into it. But, do you really want to lay aside training for this period of time? Do you really need to?
How to make teacher training more viable over the holidays:
1) Make teacher training relevant to the holidays.
Teachers will feel the effects of the holidays in the classroom. Provide training that helps them make the most of this time.
Let me suggest some helps to pass along:
- Give them this two page document with some tips for teaching over the holidays:
- Send them a link to the following articles:
2) Keep teacher training brief over the holidays.
There are more ways to train than holding a meeting. This Teacher Training Blog has already provided a series of posts about teacher training ruts. Perhaps you would do well to review the various means for training and see what might work well for you over the holiday season.
Let me suggest a few ideas you can use:
- Think through one or two sentence teaching tips most relevant to your individual teachers. Make note cards with one tip per card. Every week over the holiday season, distribute a card to each of the teachers. Over the course of the holiday season, they will have received some good reminders. You can go the extra mile in personalizing the messages using their names or perhaps the name of the class they teach and/or decorating the cards for even greater appeal.
- Think through brief messages relevant to the specific holidays that you can send to teachers through some form of social media, e-mail, or even postal mail. For example, at Thanksgiving you might send a message asking if their students know how thankful you are for them, explaining how critical relationship-building is in the teaching process. At Christmas, you might send a message about the reason Jesus came to earth to be our Savior, leading into some tips for guiding their students to accepting Christ as their Savior. At New Year’s, you might send a message about how the New Year reminds us of how God wants to make us new, emphasizing that the goal of teaching should be changed lives. Notice how each of these ideas weaves together the holiday and training.
3) Bring teacher training into focus over the holidays.
The holidays are often a good time to let teachers know they are appreciated. Many of you will express appreciation through a gift. What about making the gift something related to teaching that leads to training?