In my last post on preparing to teach a lesson, I addressed the teachers of Crossing Kids – the faithful people who communicate the Bible in God-honoring and creative ways. Equally important to preparing to teach a lesson is the exercise of evaluation after teaching. How easy it is to finish teaching in Crossing Kids and move on without ever taking to time to look back and evaluate your teaching. But without stepping back to evaluate, we miss an incredible opportunity to grow our teaching in the future.
It is often said in the educational world, “If you don’t know where you’ve been, you won’t know where you’re going,” This is so true for teachers. Without reflecting how a lesson was received, what worked well, and what would’ve worked better, a teacher cannot effectively plan lessons for the future.
Evaluating your lesson doesn’t have to be a time consuming or cumbersome project. In fact, it could just be thinking through some of the following questions as you drive home from church. In my years of teaching, I have found the best method of evaluation to be journaling in a notebook or even directly on the lesson plan. Use the following questions as a guide.
* What was the highlight of the lesson? What did kids respond best to? Think of specific examples.
* Which part of lesson was least effective? How did you notice kids responding?
* If you noticed your lesson getting off course, what did you do to correct it? Did this method work? Would you do this again?
* What did the students learn? How do you know they learned what you taught them? Think of some specific examples.
After thinking though your lesson, use this thinking as you prepare the next time. Consider how you might stretch yourself. Perhaps you need to leave more time for wrapping up the lesson or you need to do a better job at communicating expectations to volunteers. Whatever it is for you, use your evaluation to make changes in the future.
Why go through all this effort? Colassians 3:23-24 tells us,
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”
We put in an incredible amount of work in to teaching in Crossing Kids to the best of our ability – not for ourselves, or the ministry, or the staff team, or The Crossing. No, we are to work at this with all our hearts for the Lord. He sees the effort you put into the lesson, not just or Sunday morning, but the hours you spend preparing and evaluating your lesson during the week.
Let us strive to serve Christ in all we do.