In my book, Disciple-Making Encounters: Revolutionary Sunday School, I shared key elements for powerful early moments in a Sunday School lesson. Here are the ones I share there:
Key Elements Before Starting
- Expectancy. Your attitude and that of participants impacts what happens during the lesson. Expect God to be present and move. Prepare for an expect lives to be impacted.
- Early Arrival. Lead your class to arrive early. Enter in a spirit of prayer. Make sure everything is ready. Greet attenders.
- Preparation of the Teaching Space. Ensure the temperature, lighting, and room are ready. Remove distractions. Prepare for life change.
- Fellowship. Model and encourage relationship-building prior to the lesson start time.
Key Elements After Starting
- Starting on Time. Don’t wait for people to show up before beginning. Establish a regular start time.
- Prayerful Beginning. Begin with expectant prayer. Ask for God’s help in understanding and applying today’s lesson.
- Capturing Attention. Get their minds into the room and on God, the scripture, and the lesson for the day.
- Using Icebreakers. Get participants talking early related to the lesson. This can flow from your capturing attention activity or by gathering them in small groups (pairs, triads, etc.)
- Review the Previous Lesson. What was last week’s lesson about? Why was it important? What was the point?
- Discuss Last Week’s Application. What did God expect you to do as a result of last week’s lesson? What did you do?
- Preview the Lesson. What is this week’s lesson about? Why is it important?
The elements before starting prepare you well for those after starting. Avoid neglecting these powerful early moments. Make disciples. Be revolutionary!