May 18, 2011

What Does Your KidMin Sound Like?

Listen to this clip. If you've been to Disney, it probably causes images and good memories to pop into your head. Disney is a master of using sound to help create a great experience for kids and families.



Here's what the Disney team recently had to say about this.

Since the opening of Disneyland park in 1955, the strategic and clever use of sound has transported guests from frontier America to the jungles of Africa; from turn-of-the-century America to edge-of-the-galaxy Tatooine. We’ve been haunted, romanced, humored, enchanted, and sung to, with the many and varied sounds of the theme parks. And it’s not just about music.

Joe Herrington is a Principal Media Designer for Walt Disney Imagineering and a big advocate of sound, as was Walt Disney. According to Joe, the role of sound at the Disneyland Resort, or any Disney park for that matter, tells half the story of any land, attraction or entertainment you experience.

“Walt understood that,” says Joe in a Disneyland Podcast interview. “Walt incorporated sound and always tried to find new ways to use it. He was so proactive in sound technology, and in all kinds of ways, to utilize sound.”


Wow...did you see that! Joe says that the role of sound tells 50% of their stories! I'd say Disney believes sound is important when connecting with kids and families!

I believe sound also plays a huge role in helping a KidMin connect with kids and families. Strategically placed sound can take kids and families experience at church to a whole new level.

Think about it...
  • Are you leveraging the power of sound in your KidMin? Inside the rooms? In the hallways? In the lobby?
  • What do you want families to experience when they first walk in? What emotions do you want to evoke? Fun? Laughter? Anticipation? Excitement? What songs or sounds will convey that?
  • What do you want kids to experience when they first walk into their classroom? What songs or sounds will convey that?
  • What do you want kids and families to experience as they are leaving? What are the final emotions you want them to have as they walk out the door? Happy? Reflective? Celebratory? What songs or sounds will convey that?
  • What do you want mothers to experience when they walk into your nursery? Peaceful? Serene? Nurturing? What songs or sounds will convey that?
Here's a few tips...
  • Disney plays peppy, fun music as you enter the park in the morning. It helps build a sense of anticipation and excitement. Play this style music when families are arriving.
  • Disney plays relaxing, reflective music as you leave the park in the evening. It helps bring satisfaction and memories of a great day. Play this style music when families are leaving.
  • As you enter different areas of a Disney park, the music changes to fit that area of the park. Have different types of music playing in each of your KidMin areas that fits that age level. Example - play preschool music in preschool area and elementary music in elementary area.
  • Play fast, high adrenaline music for game times. This will take your game time for kids to another universe.
  • Slow things down with a slow, meditative worship song before the lesson.
  • Play slow, reflective instrumental worship music during times of prayer.
  • Play lullabies in your nursery area.
  • Use sound effects when telling a story. Example - use a thunder and rain sound clip when telling the story of Noah.
  • Make sure you place a high emphasis on a quality worship experience for kids and families. Don't cut corners in this area. Look for the best songs and worship leaders you can find.
  • Create fun audio clips for announcements in the hallways or common areas. If you've got a computer, you can make it happen. 
How do you use sound to enhance your KidMin experience? Would enjoy hearing your thoughts and ideas.

Posted by Dale Hudson

1 comments:

Great tips, but I couldn't access the samples. "Access Denied". We have started playing upbeat music for families as they arrive and they love it. I would like to do music for games and lesson time, but I'm going to need to train someone else to do that, or set up a whole playlist ahead of time! All the "little extras" take a lot of extra time! :)

Lindsey @ GrowingKidsMinistry.com

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