Recently I was reading a blog from someone in #KidMin who I respect very much (Roger Fields). However, after reading the seven reasons he is not a fan of multi-media, I had to respectfully disagree. Below was my comment...
I respectfully disagree with your conclusion and would challenge you to think outside the box a little. I have been passionately writing and producing Teacher-Driven, Media-Rich curriculum for over 10 years and have put it into practice in a large multi-site church for nearly 15 years. Media is only a problem when it is used to replace people instead of equipping spirit-led teachers. Here is why I’m a fan of this innovative style of teaching we use every weekend with 1,500 children…
1. Reliable technology.
Just like our lights turn on nearly all of the time, curriculum containing media will work nearly all of the time – it’s 2011.
2. It’s a great vehicle for creativity.
All or our lessons, no matter if they are flannel-graph or video, need creativity. Remember that content is king, but then give creativity the royal treatment!
3. Excellence is acheivable.
There are pieces of our curriculum that we can communicate with much more excellence and impact if we put them on video. None of us has the budget of Pixar/Disney, but that is not an excuse to make lame videos. Yes there is very little in KidMin, but that’s all the more reason to work hard to change that. I’ve worked hard to find free-lance professionals to acheived alot with very little money.
4. Teacher-driven, Media-rich curriculum teaches children using all of their senses.
This style has not lost steam after 15 years! The goal is to teach One Truth Multiple Ways each week. Kid will zone out if you teach to one sense for too long. Our curriculum has over 10 transitions which keeps kids zoned in, not out.
5. Multi-media equips workers significantly.
Media-DRIVEN curriculum is an abuse of media, but Teacher-Driven, Media-Rich curriculum maximizes the benefits while involving workers to lead a game, tell a story, demonstrate an object lesson, pray with kids, etc. Media is not the enemy if it is a strategic part of a well balanced lesson.
6. Flat screens magnify the message.
I would strongly agree with Jim Wideman and you that “There is no substitute for a Spirit-led person”. That is exactly what propelled me to create an innovative style of curriclum instead of just tossing the baby out with the bathwater.
7. Multi-media engages kids when it is used in a strategic way.
Kids will zone out whenever they do anything for long periods of time – even playing a game. Just because most multi-media fails to engage, doesn’t mean we need to stop using multi-media. Our objective is to communicate the life-changeing message of Jesus to today’s children and media is a big part of our children’s world today.
My inclination was to just read the blog and get back to writing my Grades 2-5 lesson, but I couldn’t. I will enthusiasitcally be at the 2011 CM Expo again this summer in Lexington with a booth that sells affordable and innovative Teacher-Driven, Media-Rich curriculum. Check it out for yourself at http://www.TadpoleTails.org before just proclaiming media bad.
Thanks for allowing me to share my passion…
Children’s Pastor of The Chapel