The Most Shocking Discovery of
the Summer

What percentage of Sunday School teachers are NOT half-way decent?

I have been teaching for a long time that we have to have half-way decent teaching, each and every week, nothing less will do. You don't have to be Chuck Swindoll to double a Sunday School class; you do have to have half way decent teaching each and every week. You don't have to knock it out of the park; you do need to get on home base.

It hadn't occurred to me to ask until recently: how many are half way decent, and how many are not? I was shocked the answer.

Mind you, I am asking Sunday School teachers this question. Sunday School teachers. Presumably these are people who have a rather high regard for Sunday School and their teachers. I was shocked by their answers.

I asked the question this way: Think back over a life of attending Sunday School. What percentage of teachers would you say drop below the bar of half way decent teaching? That is, what percentage of teacher would you say teach so badly that their teaching will significantly hinder the growth of their group? (How would you answer that question?) Answer: 33%! One third of Sunday School teachers teach so badly they make it very difficult to grow a group.

If you are a pastor, I hope this gets your attention. If you are a Minister of Education or Sunday School Director, I hope you understand why you have a job. If you are a Sunday School teacher, I hope this causes you to pray, "Is it I, Lord?"

Here are seven things we can do to improve the quality of all of our teaching.

  • Make a promise to continual, life-long improvement in your teaching. It is best if this promise is modeled by the Pastor and Minister of Education
  • Follow up by taking courses, reading books and listening to tapes that help us be a better communicator. I have listed several in this email.
  • Consider using video to enhance your teaching. There are many vendors out there. 2020 Vision is producing a series of Interactive Videos. By Interactive Video we mean I teach for 5 or 10 minutes, ask you to pause the tape and discuss a point, I teach again and so forth.
  • Using Good Question Sunday School lessons.
  • These lessons consist of 20 - 30 questions per week. It is hard for a conversation to be boring.
  • Subscribe your teachers to this list. They will receive Teaching Tips every couple of weeks in their email free of charge
  • If you can't teach great lessons, at least teach short lessons! I have never heard a bad short sermon. Keep them wanting more.
  • Recruit a critic-someone who will tell you week by week what went well and would could have been done better. The best preacher I ever served under, Sam Shaw asked me to be this critic for him. That is why he is so good! Listen to one of Sam's sermons here.