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A girl wearing a yellow striped shirt is standing in front of a bright yellow background. She looks like she is one of those children with negative attitudes.
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Teacher Tip: Working with Negative Children in Your Ministry

First, minimize the impact of negative children and then create a positive atmosphere with these tips.


A negative child often seeks love and craves attention. A negative attitude, though, can disrupt your classroom, hinder learning, and put an uncomfortable cloud over your entire class. Minimize classroom negativity and create a positive atmosphere with these practical tips.

3 Tips for Working with Negative Children in Your Ministry

1. Love

Show the child God’s love through every word and action. Don’t exclude a child because of her poor attitude. Set firm boundaries and let her know that you expect positive behavior. Praise her for her efforts to overcome her negative attitude. Pray with her to show her that you and God love her very much.

2. Eliminate the Child’s Negative Attitude

Don’t allow negativity to breed negativity. Immediately stop any negative comments and put-downs before things escalate. Eliminate “downtime” by keeping the negative child busy. Have him help you before, during, and after class. Praise him for his efforts, such as sharpening pencils, completing the lesson project, or listening carefully.

3. Listen

Correct the child’s negative attitude away from the other children. Give her your undivided attention. Let her know that you understand, care, and want to help. Most of all, let her know that God loves her unconditionally.

Mary Davis
Montrose, Iowa

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Teacher Tip: Working with Negative Ch...

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