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FourFiveSix.org: Great Ideas for your Preteen Ministry

Looking for great (game, object lessons, worship, volunteer celebration, etc. etc.) ideas to take your preteen ministry to the next level? This podcast is created and curated by FourFiveSix.org, a community of leading voices in preteen ministry. Our goal is simple: a short (4,5, or 6 minute) podcast a few times a week (4, 5, or 6 times) that gives you a quick, easy, free idea that you can use in your preteen ministry THIS WEEK. Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Want to get more great ideas right now? Come join the community of preteen leaders at fourfivesix.org
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Now displaying: 2015
Nov 6, 2015

Consequences can be a good and necessary part of your discipline plan, but are systems-based consequences (i.e. first infraction, you get a warning, second infraction, you get a time-out, etc.) consistent with the concepts of relationship-based discipline?

Today on the podcast, Sean talks about why you should throw out systems-based consequences, and instead focus on consequences that are specific to THIS preteen and THIS situation.

By the way…

Are you signed up for FourFiveSix’s 2016 Online Conference yet? Get all the details HERE.

Are you receiving the weekly newsletter yet? Get added to the list HERE, or by texting “preteen” to 66866.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Nov 4, 2015

Heather Dunn took some time out to sit down with Sean today to talk about looking beyond the behaviors of our preteens to what’s REALLY going on.

Listen to today’s podcast and find out why “good discipline begins with questions.”

This is part 2 of a 10 part series about Relationship Based Discipline. Check out the whole series starting with episode 1: “Punishment vs. Discipline”.

By the way…

Are you signed up for the “Onference” yet? Get all the details HERE.

Are you receiving the weekly newsletter yet? Get added to the list HERE, or by texting “preteen” to 66866.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Nov 2, 2015

Today we begin a 10-part series about Relationship Based Discipline, which really is a GREAT idea for preteen ministry. To start off the series, we take a look at punishment vs. discipline.

In this podcast we’ll cover:

  • Two key differences between punishment and discipline.
  • Why punishment is most people’s “go to” method of dealing with behavior issues.
  • Why discipline is a much better method of dealing with behavior issues.

By understanding the difference between punishment and discipline, you can start to identify your interactions with the students in your ministry and begin to think about how to adjust course.

By the way…

Are you signed up for the “Onference” yet? Get all the details HERE.

Are you receiving the weekly newsletter yet? Get added to the list HERE, or by texting “preteen” to 66866.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 29, 2015

YES! It’s our 100th Great Idea Podcast! And it’s a good one.

Today, Sean talks about memorizing ONE passage of Scripture, a passage with a big idea that can become the theme for your school year. Then, at the beginning of the “message” part of your service, recite that passage each and every week for the entire year.

There are at least four great benefits for your preteens if you will do this. Listen to the podcast to hear them!

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 28, 2015

The worst excuse for not having ministry specific to the preteens at your church is ANY EXCUSE. But the most common is “We don’t have a big enough group and we don’t have enough space.”

There are things you can do to minister specifically to the preteens at your church, even within the context of a small children’s ministry. In today’s podcast, Sean shares a few ideas that we’ve picked up over the years from people who are doing it…ministering to preteens in the context of a small children’s ministry.

NO MORE EXCUSES – let’s ALL minister to preteens!

Oct 27, 2015

Want to teach your preteens about leadership…or trust…or meekness…or anything real? Then give your preteens a real life simulation.

Today during the podcast, Sean talks about the Lord of the Flies Leadership Challenges that he uses with his Fifth Grade Helpers. It’s not just the activity that matters, though, it’s the processing that takes place afterward.

What do you think? Are your preteens ready for a bigger challenge? Are you ready to let go of the bike in this way?

This Thursday, October 28th, is your first chance to sign up for the 2016 Preteen Leaders Online Conference. Get signed up early for reduced pricing AND to win some awesome prizes! Get more details at www.fourfivesix.org/onference.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 26, 2015

Today, we talk to Laura Karr, preteen ministry leader in Normal, Illinois, about an annual event they have done for 13 years: The Maze!

Many preteens love mazes and physical involvement, and the idea that Laura shares involves both!

By the way, it’s cheaper than we thought to order refrigerator boxes. Google "refrigerator boxes for sale" and see if it's less than you would think, too! 

This Thursday, October 28th, is your first chance to sign up for the 2016 Preteen Leaders Online Conference. Get signed up early for reduced pricing AND to win some awesome prizes! Get more details here.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 23, 2015

Yesterday, we talked about 3 conversations you can have in your preteen ministry to help create a safe space where preteens feel compelled to freely worship through singing.

Today, Sean gives 3 practical tips for how you can create a culture of worship in your preteen ministry:

  1. Create a worship space
  2. Teach about worship
  3. Alter the number of worship songs and their placement in your service

By the way, here's a quote from Martin Luther: "A person who...does not regard [music] as a marvelous creation of God, must be a clodhopper indeed and does not deserve to be called a human being; he should be permitted to hear nothing but the braying of asses and the grunting of hogs."

Well, that's putting it bluntly.  Haha.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 22, 2015

Over time, you CAN create a safe space where preteens feel compelled to freely worship through singing. Do you think 1 Chronicles 16:23 (“sing to the LORD, all the earth”) is just a suggestion? Worship is central to the tenants of the Bible – worship should be a central theme for our preteen ministries. And God’s heart is to hear us worship in SONG:

“Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing praises!” –Psalm 47:6

Today on the podcast, Sean talks about some conversations that you can have to help move your group toward being a group that worships. By having many small conversations, over time, you can create a culture of worship.

Affirm the people that ARE worshipping.

With your leaders, discuss the importance of setting an example of worshipping

ASK people that aren’t worshipping to explain why they aren’t

What are your biggest challenges to creating a culture of worship? Let us know in the comment section below!

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 21, 2015

Robert Quinn, from preteenministry.net, joins us on the podcast today to talk about Worship Stations, a concept that looks at worship beyond singing. Robert has written more about this concept, and you can read that here.

This idea falls in line with the concept of Giving Choices, one of the six ways we’ve found to Let Go of the Bike.

Have you ever tried worship stations? Tell us about your experience in the comment section.

Are you receiving our weekly newsletter? You should. J In it, you’ll receive free ideas, resources, encouragement, and even exclusive offers for upcoming events and resources.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 20, 2015

Last time, we talked about a way to select songs for your preteen ministry. Today, we talk about taking songs that would be “good” for your preteen ministry, and making them songs that are “GREAT” for your preteen ministry.

Sean gives four tips to altering songs so that they resonate strongly in your preteen ministry:

  1. Change the words
  2. Simplify the structure
  3. Change the tempo
  4. Add in ENGAGEMENT

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 17, 2015

Last time, we talked about introducing new songs to the preteens, but what songs resonate with preteens? Just because we like a song (or a preteen likes a song), does that mean it will make a good worship song?

Today on the podcast, Sean uses the acronym B.U.R.P.E. to give five tips for choosing songs that your preteens will sing.

The song “All to Him” is by Desperation Band.

The song “Anchor” is by Revolution Worship.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 15, 2015

Have you ever fallen in love with a song, and thought it would be GREAT for your preteens, but when you introduce it, it falls flat?

If so, then today’s podcast is for you. We talk about why that might have happened, and some ideas of how you can have greater success the next time you introduce a new song to your preteens.

Mentioned in today’s podcast is a podcast we recorded a few weeks ago about having a live band. Check that one out – we hope it challenges and blesses you!

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 14, 2015

If you have discipline/behavioral issues with the preteens in your ministry, you may find a solution in an unexpected place – by changing the seating arrangement.

Do you preteens sit on the floor? In chairs? Couches? Beanbags? Maybe it’s time for a change. Sometimes, just a couple of minor alterations in your seating arrangement can make a HUGE difference in the behavior of your preteens. In today’s podcast, Sean shares some ideas about seating arrangements to get your creative juices flowing.

And NOW….some announcements:

How do you structure your services? Share your ideas and get some ideas HERE.

Retreat 2 ADVANCE is coming up in November. Don’t miss it!

Our FREE Webinar with Patrick Snow from SuperStart! is October 20th. Don’t miss it!

Space Tours is HAPPENIN’! Get all the details and join us for the next one, which is coming soon.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 13, 2015

You have a mission statement? WONDERFUL. But do you preteens know it? Do they know why your ministry exists and why they are coming each week? Today, Sean shares how Elevate Preteen Ministry communicates their mission statement with the preteens in their ministry…to the point where the preteens are saying it back to the leaders, and even, on their own, creating artwork (like the one pictured above) that communicates the mission statement.

You don’t have a mission statement? We can help you with that! Come join us for Retreat 2 ADVANCE – This is a small retreat in November where we will share ideas, and most importantly, go through a process to refine our Driving Purpose and how to best communicate that to parents, staff, kids, etc.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 9, 2015

Today Sean shares the third of three different service formats (Delivery Methods) that he uses in his preteen ministry. Here’s a basic outline of the “InLight” Service Format:

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 9, 2015

Today Sean will share the second of three different service formats (Delivery Methods) that he uses in his preteen ministry. Here’s a basic outline of the “StepUp” Service Format:

  • 8:45 – Pre-Service Connection Time
  • 9:10 – Introductions and Instructions (overview of what StepUp! Is)
  • 9:13 – M.A.P. (Me, Affect, Prayer)
  • 9:23 – Worship
  • 9:25 – Transition to Adventures…Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3
  • 9:55 – Transition everybody together and recap today’s adventures
  • 10:00 – Prayer Time (Taking prayer requests and praying together)
  • 10:12 – Announcements
  • 10:15 – Dismiss (Hugs, Handshakes, and High Fives)

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 7, 2015

Today Sean will share the first of three different service formats (Delivery Methods) that he uses in his preteen ministry. Here’s a basic outline of the “Reveal” Service Format:

6:30 – Pre-Service Connection Time

7:00 – Countdown and Gather

7:03 – Upbeat Song/Dance/Activity

7:06 – Announcements

7:10 – The Mystery Game

7:17 – Lesson Set-Up

7:23 – First Small Group Time

7:33 – God is Here Video

7:34 – Scripture Reading and “Know God, Show God” Window

7:37 – Song that tells God we are opening our hearts to knowing Him more

7:41 – “Lesson”

8:03 – Response Piece

8:08 – Response Worship Song

8:11 – Reveal Window

8:15 – 2nd Small Group Time

8:26 – Closing Upbeat Song and Thought

8:30 – Dismiss (Hugs, Handshakes, and High Fives)

 

Please share your typical schedule with us in the comment section below. What is your delivery method?

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 6, 2015

One of the best ways to learn how to do preteen ministry better is by seeing what others are doing. We are all figuring this thing out – so why not figure it out together?

On today’s podcast, Sean talks about some tips and tools when it comes to learning from others.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 2, 2015

Your preteens want to be treasured, and valued.

The good news: If they are a child of God, then they are valued!

The bad news: Many of your preteens think they are valued based on how much of a rock star they are.

Enter “ROCKSTAR NIGHT”. This idea for a service was so much fun, and so powerful! Rock Star Night can help the preteens in your group to understand their true identity, and why they are treasured.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Oct 1, 2015

Today’s great idea is a little different, because today’s great idea is actually a challenge for you creative preteen ministry leaders:

Think of something creative and meaningful to do with PUMPKINS at the beginning of November, and plan for it right now.

On the podcast, Sean shares what they did last year on “Bring Us Your Pumpkins” Sunday, and challenges everybody to think of a great idea involving all the unwanted pumpkins of November.

Want the bully series mentioned in today’s podcast for free? Join our newsletter and we’ll send it to you.

Is your preteen ministry on The Map yet? If not, add it today and start connecting with preteen ministry leaders in your area.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Sep 30, 2015

For over a decade, Patrick and Samantha Snow and a team of talented folks from Missouri have held SuperStart! preteen weekend events around the United States! They have been SO HUGE for preteen ministry.

Listen to today’s podcast to hear three reasons why Sean thinks SuperStart! is a GREAT idea for his preteen ministry (and maybe yours, too), and hear about how God has used SuperStart! to beautifully benefit preteen ministry far beyond the weekend event.

Patrick Snow gets preteen ministry, and explains THE BIKE better than anybody we’ve ever heard explain it. Join him and Sean for a Webinar coming up on October 20th.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Sep 28, 2015

Chris Santos, a ministry leader in Elevate, joins us on today’s podcast. It’s not the topic of today’s podcast, but last Wednesday in Elevate, Chris proposed to his girlfriend during our service. It was really cool. You can watch it here.

Today on the podcast, Chris joins Sean to talk about a volunteer development idea: “It’s better because you didn’t do it.”

Do you ever have a volunteer complete a task that you could have done better: Set up chairs, make slides, create a prop, teach the lesson, etc.? Listen to today’s podcast to find out why, in reality, it’s actually better because you DIDN’T do it.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Sep 24, 2015

Have you ever gone through a week of ministry work and said, “Where did the week go?” Are you prone to wasting time or jumping from action item to action item without much prayer, organization, or thought?

On today’s podcast, Sean discusses a couple of tools to help you get organized. Here are two of them:

The Beautiful To Do list: Suru

A tool that combined to do lists, calendar, and e-mail: Handle

Without a Driving Purpose, however, we can be very productive, but not be doing what we should be doing. Driving Purpose is a GREAT PLACE to start any discussion on being a good steward of our time.

What kind of tools do you use to optimize your time and be a good steward of your time? Share with us.

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Sep 23, 2015

In a recent podcast, entitled “Folder of Encouragement”, we looked at the idea of receiving and keeping notes of encouragement for ourselves. Today, we flip that idea on its head!

Today’s podcast is short and simple and can summed up in one sentence: Write a note of encouragement to somebody on staff at your church. BAM!

A couple of announcements from today’s podcast:

  • Join us for Retreat 2 ADVANCE
  • We are in the beginning stages of creating curriculum, and we want your input. Answer 9 questions to help us create curriculum that YOU think is awesome.
  • Have you checked out “The Map”? Is your preteen ministry on The Map?

Have a question about preteen ministry or a unique preteen ministry idea that we can feature on our podcast? Send it to podcast@fourfivesix.org. Looking for a great community of preteen leaders that you can plug into? Join us at http://fourfivesix.org/.

Background music in today’s podcast is compliments of Purple Planet.

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