How You Can Be Kids' Favorite Teacher

He makes a point each week to ask if I will be teaching in his classroom that day.  He says...

"Are you teaching in my class today? I hope so. You are my favorite teacher."

I know why he tells me that each week.  

It's not because of my teaching ability.  There are other people on our volunteer team who do an excellent job teaching the kids as well. 

It's not because I have great snacks for his class.

It's not because I have cool worship songs that he can sing along with. 

It's not because I have awesome lesson videos he can watch.

Here's the reason why he says I am his favorite teacher.

I spend time with him before class and after class each week.

It's because I talk with him about trains.  He loves trains.  So, I enter his world each week and we spend some time talking about trains.  

I call him by name each week. 

I ask him how he is doing and how school went that week.

Don't forget...

Kids don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care.

By the takes time for this to happen.

I spent weeks and weeks making it a point to talk with him before he started responding to me.  I made sure I called him by name each week.  I talked about what interests him.  I prayed for him by name during prayer time.

You may have heard the story I told about the boy who wouldn't participate in the service. He ended up being sent to the back of the room to sit against the wall.  That's how I found him when I entered that classroom.  

I tried to talk to him about the service, the songs, the lesson, the games, etc. but I received no response.  In fact, he turned away from me and ignored me. He didn't care if I was the "children's pastor."  Made no difference to him.  And there's another great lesson to learn from this.

Kids don't follow a title.  They follow someone who has invested in them.

After trying to get through to him for about 5 minutes, I decided to try something else.  I asked if he had a video game system.  That got his attention.  He turned to me and talked with me about video games.  That worked.  He engaged with the class for the rest of the service.  He just needed someone to make some time for him and talk with him about something that was part of his life.

Access to a child's heart can only be granted by the child.  Access comes from spending time with the child, caring about the child and investing in the child. 

20 years from now, when the kids you serve are all grown up, they will remember that you cared.  They will remember that you were there for them.  They will remember that you were their favorite Bible teacher. 

How can you be kids' Favorite teacher?

Just show up.  

It's not about your teaching skills.  It's not about being a great storyteller.  It's not about showing the kids how to do an amazing craft. 

It's about your faithfulness to be there...week end and week out...that will compound the impact you have in their life.

Stop and think about it.  Who were the people who impacted your life as a child?  It was the people who were there and took the time to personally invest in you.

And now it's your turn to do the same.  This is how you can be kids' favorite teacher.