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Preteens: Keep 'Em Coming

Gordon West

A simple three-step "welcome wagon" to help break the ice for your preteens' ministry.

1. Lights, Camera, Action
Prepare a video that highlights the major activities for preteens at your church. Have lots of action shots and close-ups of kids having fun! You may choose to narrate the show or dub in music such as upbeat '50s or swing music without lyrics.

2. Host Team
Train a team of friendly children and adults to serve as hosts. Make sure your team has a thorough knowledge of your entire program. Enlist this team during key outreach meetings, weekly meetings, or any time you have visitors to engage in relationship building activities.

3. Pizza Break
Keep frozen pizza and soft drinks on hand or order pizza for this step. At a designated time in your program, invite first-time guests to take the friends who brought them to another room where they'll get to meet other preteens, eat pizza, and watch the video about your program. Your regular kids will get to have pizza, too, as a celebration that their friends came.

During this special time, promote upcoming special activities. Hand out brochures about your program. Get each visitor's name, address, and phone number. Then have someone from your host team follow up with a phone call or letter.

Gordon and Becki West are co-authors of The Discipline Guide for Children's Ministry (Group) and founders of KidZ KaN Make a Difference and KidZ At Heart International ( Please keep in mind that phone numbers, addresses, and prices are subject to change.

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