Co-Teach and Multiply

Plan together

As spring winds down and summer rolls in, I always begin thinking about our upcoming year in Mission Friends. Who will my new preschoolers be this fall? How much will they already know about missionaries? Will we need to start at the very beginning? Will they know how to interact with one another? What behavior issues will we face? And . . . WHO is going to help me teach?

For many years, I taught solo. We are learning, however, that bringing in co-teachers is a wonderful way to multiply your organizations. Pairing novice teachers with veteran teachers gives the novice an opportunity to observe and learn tried-and-true methods. It gives veteran teachers the opportunity to learn new methods. And, it gives your church a proven training method for developing new leaders.

So how does co-teaching work? Communication is key as you:

  1. Plan together.
    Who will teach group time? Who will plan interest area activities? What are your goals? What do you want your preschoolers to know or understand at the end of each session? You can plan in person, by phone, or even by e-mail. Using the Mission Friends Plan Sheet will help you choose activities and assign responsibility for preparation of the activities.
  2. Give your new teacher resources for planning and teaching.
    Each teacher should have a copy of the Mission Friends Guide for Leaders* and a copy of Mission Friends Leader.* Store other regularly used resources in a communal area.
  3. Evaluate your strengths. 
    Is one of you a gifted storyteller? Is one of you artsy? Is one of you a gifted organizer or administrator? Discuss your areas of giftedness and assign responsibilities accordingly.
  4. Give each other space and grace. 
    Allow each teacher to carry out her responsibilities and to conduct activities in the manner that best suits her personality and teaching philosophy.
  5. Regularly evaluate your co-teaching. 
    What is working? What is not working? Do you both feel that you are being productive and getting the most out of teaching together? Are you experiencing discipline issues in the classroom? If so, how can you work through those together?
  6. Pray together.
    Pray for your preschoolers. Pray for your church. Pray for your Mission Friends classes. Pray for each other. Nothing will bring unity to your teaching more than planned times of prayer.

As you pour your love for teaching preschoolers into the heart of a novice teacher, trust God to develop her leadership skills and her confidence in teaching. And, as you work together, trust Him to use your shared love for missions to transform the lives of the preschoolers who have been entrusted to your care!

*Until June 2, order by calling WMU Customer Service: 1-800-968-7301.

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