Creativity in Bible Teaching

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If creativity is essential in Bible teaching, then many may question if they should be teachers. We all, however, have the potential and purpose for being creative.

The Potential and Purpose for Creativity in Bible Teaching

If we remember these two points, we’ll tend to be more open to learning what we can about creative Bible teaching.

  1. Our potential to be creative: We’re all made in the image and likeness of a creative God.

Made in the Image of God, We All Have Potential for Creativity

Part of that likeness is creativity, not the part of bringing something into existence from nothing but rather the more imaginative side that invests what is already created with new form, that uses variety, and that puts purposeful design into what is done. Hence, creativity goes beyond innovative methods and riveting visualization. When our teaching is about lining up with God and His ways, creativity becomes essential for Bible teachers affecting all we do as teachers like the overall goals of teaching, our view of the teaching-learning process, classroom structure, and approach to the lesson. Creative teaching also affects our role as teachers and how we relate to students.

Learn More: Creative Bible Teaching with Results Workbook

  1. Our purpose in being creative: Creativity has a positive effect on the learning process.

Teachers need to get beyond themselves and realize the effect their teaching can have on others. Creativity moves students to higher levels of learning. Creativity brings many benefits that will make the classroom conducive to true learning and growth.

Learn More: Turning the Benefits of Creativity into Reality Worksheet

We must do more than just realizing our potential to be creative and understanding its benefits. We must implement steps to make it a reality. The training resources listed above can help with that. Also find more resources at: Teacher Training Resources for Creative Bible Teaching

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FAQ about Relationship Building in the Classroom

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FAQ about Relationship Building
Perhaps you acknowledge that relationships with and among students are important. You might, however, have questions about the implementation of such an objective.

Question About Relationship Building During Class Time

How can we incorporate relationship building and still have enough time for teaching a lesson?

First, relationship building and teaching go hand in hand. It’s important we don’t separate the two. Think of Jesus, Truth Incarnate. He came to earth to dwell among people and foster a relationship between them and the Father. He was, at the same time the Word (Jn. 1:1) and constantly pointed people to Truth. Granted, we are not Jesus so we can’t claim to be Truth as he did (Jn. 14:6). Yet, by the Spirit’s help, we can model alliance with Truth. If Jesus communicated truth in a relational way and for the purpose of building relationships, why wouldn’t both go hand in hand for us as well?

Second, we must realize that while purposefully incorporating community building activities does take time, it doesn’t have to consume a lot of class time. We can foster a relational climate in many other ways, like the following:

  • Make it a point to greet each student when they arrive and encourage them to mingle with each other until class begins.
  • Arrange seating so students can see one another, and you also join the circle.
  • Use methods that allow students to interact with you and one another.
  • Expect students to treat one another, and you the teacher, with respect, consideration, etc. which will lay a foundation for relationships.
  • Guard how disagreements are handled, using them as teachable moments.
  • During the application part of the lesson, ask probing question to get students sharing authentic reactions, feelings, and implications of the truth they’re learning and students may follow-up with each other outside of class, as should you.
  • Often end the session with students sharing with each other or praying for each other so it has the potential of continuing on after class.
  • Be a good example of Christ-like communication and relating with students but also with other teachers, workers, and leaders as students probably see more than you might realize.

Think of the teacher’s role in this more as building an environment conducive to relationships and you’ll find that you don’t have to always carve out a block of time for it. You’ll be laying the groundwork for continued building of relationships outside of class which is in line with what God means when He tells us to “be devoted to one another in love” (Rom. 12:10).

Teacher Training Resource: Teachers Either Block or Promote Community Worksheet

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Are Crafts More Than Time Fillers?

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Whether for special activities over the holiday seasons or for the normal course of Bible classes, crafts should be used strategically. With only about one hour to leave an eternal impact on students’ lives, we need to make the most of every opportunity (Eph. 5:16). Hence, when thinking about what to do next in the lesson, consider what will most help students know God and His Word. What will help reinforce what they’re learning? To make the best use of the short time we have with students, crafts must make a difference in the learning process in order to be more than time fillers.

Two Keys to Making Sure Crafts are More Than Time Fillers

1) Be purposeful.

Yes, children tend to like doing crafts so they can be a good Bible teaching method. Crafts must, however, be seen as a means to a greater end, not simply an activity. Merely filling time with something kids like to do isn’t a good enough purpose to maximize the use of lesson time.

2) Be process-oriented.

We must understand that the process is more important than the completed product. Using guided conversation to direct students to God and what they learned about Him helps make every moment count in the classroom.

For Training Resources:

Crafts as a Bible Learning Activity DownloadOrder the one page handout, Crafts as a Bible Learning Activity, at the Ministry Tools Resource Center’s Online Store. It provides similar tips along with how to choose crafts in lessons and how to extend the use of crafts beyond the classroom.

(You can order this individual training document or get it as part of the Bible Learning Activities For Children Training Download which contains a page for 8 different learning activities.)

For Craft Kits:
Craft Kits
Check out the biblically themed craft kits at Oriental Trading. Perhaps something there will fit an upcoming purpose for your lessons. (Clicking on the link uses our affiliate code to go to Oriental Trading. Any sales help this ministry.)

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Supernatural Power Needed in Bible Teaching

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We must be careful teacher training gets beyond natural principles in the teaching-learning process. If we only work within the natural, our end result will be behavioral modification, not heart transformation. Changed lives from the inside out takes supernatural power.

Bible Verses about Supernatural Power

The Spirit's Supernatural Power Needed in Bible Teaching
While we could point to quite a few verses showing the need for God’s power to be at work in people’s lives for lasting change to occur, reflect on these.

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know … and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms … (Eph. 1:18-20)

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. (2 Pet. 1:3)

… it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. (Phil. 2:13)

Rely on God’s Power in Bible Teaching Yet Remember How He Designed People to Learn

While changed lives from the inside out requires divine power, that doesn’t mean we ignore natural principles of learning. God made people to learn certain ways, so we should work within that design. We must, however, always run the natural principles through the grid of Scripture. Just because something seems to work or is used widely in public education, doesn’t mean it’s right or profitable in Bible teaching.

We work in cooperation with God’s design, planting and watering the seed of His Word, but must always remember that “neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow” (1 Cor. 3:7).

Bible teachers should …

pray through both the preparation and presentation of the lesson,
do their best to accurately and correctly handle the word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15),
teach in ways that align with how God made people to learn,
rely on the Holy Spirit to work in and through them.

Check out The Holy Spirit & My Teaching Devotional, encouraging teachers of all ages to rely on the Spirit for the supernatural power needed in teaching.

If teaching children, the worksheet, Heart Transformation or Behavior Modification?, would also be helpful.

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