Do you notice the trend that many families are choosing to attend Sunday School every other week? For most churches, kids’ attendance is more and more sporadic as their lives get busier and busier. There are a few strategies that we can use to encourage kids to attend Sunday School. Click here to share your own ideas with other readers.
1. Notice when they are NOT there. I’m always amazed by the response by kids and families to a simple “We missed you” card. People want to know that you care. When they know that you care whether they are there or not, kids are more likely to come. Train teachers to send notes, make calls, or follow up in other ways when their kiddos are missing. We use our attendance software to track absences. After missing four weeks a child gets a postcard. If they have missed 5-7 they get a call from our staff, then another postcard after 8 weeks.
2. Make it fun. If kids feel like they are going to miss something, they are going to do their best not to miss. Make it your goal to have kids dragging their parents to church.
3. Regularly schedule “high attendance” events. People show up for special occasions, especially if there is food involved. Pick one Sunday a quarter to be your “high attendance” day. Create a fun theme. Encourage all teachers to contact everyone on their rolls.
4. Help kids feel connected with each other. One of the top reasons I hear of why kids don’t want to go to Sunday School is that they “don’t know anyone”. Each week include a “get to know you” ice breaker in every class.
5. Have fun social events outside of class. This relates to the point above about helping kids connect with each other. If they can have fun together outside of Sunday morning, they will feel more comfortable in class, and then they will be more likely to come..
6. Follow up with visitors. Make sure you have a great plan for following up with new families who attend your church. Help them feel welcome, answer their questions, and encourage them to come back. Consider also sending out welcome packets with information about your ministry and maybe even a small gift card or coupon.