ORANGE TIP: Being Orange is easy
As an adult, you can make a huge difference in how ‘Orange’ our church is. If you’re not sure what that means, check out the “What is Orange?” blurb below. You can make a difference simply by speaking with children in our church family. It’s easy for us to forget to talk to kids, or to be afraid of being misunderstood. Mostly though we just don’t bother – unless we’re telling them off.
Here’s a few tips on how to speak to kids;
Talk with them in a public place, with other people around. If they are off by themselves, you might say hello in passing, but don’t start up a conversation – unless they’re lost, then help them find their parent!
Get down to their level. Don’t tower over them and demand they answer your questions. Squat, kneel or sit with them so you’re at their eye-level.
Ask them open questions (questions that need more than a “yes” or “no” answer) eg. Instead of “Did you learn anything at kid’s church today?”, ask “What did you learn about at kid’s church today?”.
Let them lead the conversation. You’re not there to test them, tell them off or prove how smart or cool you are (you’re probably not, I know I’m not!).
Be aware that most of the time, when an adult bothers to speak to them, it’s to tell them off. They may well be waiting for you to ‘get to the point’ and tell them what they’ve done wrong. Only a consistent effort on your part will break this expectation and help them become comfortable.
Some kids won’t want to speak to you. That’s ok! Don’t force it and don’t take it personally.
Pass on any encouraging conversations to their parents. Let parents know that their child told you how much fun they had at their birthday party or that they made a cool card for their Mum at school.
Support their parents. Don’t try to be popular with a kid by criticising, joining in with complaints or siding against parents. If you’re not sure what to say, you could suggest they talk directly to their parent about it.
No secrets. Don’t ask a child to keep a secret and don’t promise to keep a secret. If abuse is ever disclosed speak immediately, and only, to a ‘non-involved’ parent or Crosslife pastor.
Relax! They (mostly) don’t bite. Just say hello. They might ignore you or run away – so what? Try again next week.
What is ‘Orange’? Orange is a visual reminder that to help our
kids follow Jesus the church and families need to work together.
If RED represents the love and heart of families for their kids…
And YELLOW represents the light that the church should be in the world…
Then ORANGE is when we come together, work together and guide our children together.
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