Create Tension When Teaching Application

Do you want kiddos to be impacted by your lessons?  Do you want them to live out the truth you teach them?  Do you want to see them apply the truth to their life?

We know that tapping into kids' emotions is a great way to get them to apply what you taught them.

One of the best ways to do this is to create situations where they feel the tension of making a choice. 

Here are a couple of examples. 

I was teaching a lesson about giving and living for others. 

At the end of the lesson, I brought out bags of candy for each child.  I told them the candy was theirs to keep.  They could take it home and enjoy eating it.  


I shared with them about a poor community that was about 30 miles away.  The kids in this community didn't get candy very often and it would be a big surprise for them.  

So the kids had a choice to make. They could take the candy home and enjoy eating it or they could leave it on the table and it would be taken to the kids in the poor community.  

You could feel the tension in the air.  The application for giving was really being felt. 

The majority of the kids left the candy for the kids in the poor community, but some did not.  And that's okay.  The goal was for all of the kids to feel the tension of the application.

Here's a second example.

I was doing a lesson about resisting temptation.  When the lesson started, we brought out a freshly baked chocolate cake for each group of kids. While I was sharing the lesson, the kids were instructed they could not touch or eat any the cake.  We left the cake there during the entire lesson about resisting temptation with God's help.  

You could tell the kids wanted to dive in and eat the cakes.  But we didn't allow them to do so.  We wanted them to feel the tension of saying "no" to temptation.  Did we let them eat the cakes at the end of the lesson?  Nope.  They left that day and didn't get to eat any of the cake. 

The application of temptation was clearly felt that day.  And the kids will always remember it.  That's what happens when you take the next step and create tension through application.