Managing a Spiritualist Center

Managing Problem Kids in a Church Event
By:Monica Patrick

Church events are exciting times of ministry in the life of a church. Christmas plays and vacation Bible schools are two major events that children regularly attend. At these events, you may have kids who are not accustomed to being at church. Some may lack regular discipline and will test the boundaries of your classrooms and events. For the welfare of all who want to attend your church events, including the difficult children themselves, rein in your discipline problems by being prepared and patient.

Greet the child and parents when they enter the church. Introduce yourself and ask their names. This helps develop a rapport between the church and the child.

Lead the family to seating in the church that may be less disturbing if the child acts up. A seat in the front row is probably not best, because it will put him in full view of the church. If the child attends the church event by himself, then assign a reliable church leader to sit with him during the event.

Make announcements from the pulpit about the rules for the event. Ask everyone to remain quiet and in his or her seats during the service. Be friendly but firm.

Involve problem children in your service. In general, kids who act up only want your attention. If the attention is made available through a positive channel, most children will seek it that way. Assign the child a special role like handing out church bulletins or collecting the communion cups. Responsibility makes a child feel valuable.

Use the child's name when you interact with him. Engage him in conversation. Ask about his school, hobbies and friends.

Utilize peer pressure to maintain order. For example, at a kids' church event, randomly divide the room into two groups. Assign each group three helium balloons on a string. Tie the balloons together in threes on either side of the church. When one side breaks the behavior rules, pop a balloon. At the end of the service, reward the team with the most balloons left.