Give preteens leadership roles in your children’s ministry. This will build their self-esteem and give them purpose and fulfillment. It will also prepare them for service in youth ministry and beyond. Your youth minister will thank you for doing this!
In our children’s ministry services, we have used 4th-6th graders as sound and light technicians, ushers, greeters, praise team members, and puppeteers. They have been involved in presenting the lesson through drama or musicals. Older preteens have served as assistants to our preschool teachers.
Allow preteens to partner with younger kids moving up from preschool ministry to help them get acclimated to elementary ministry. Allow preteens to lead portions of your kids’ church services, such as prayer or worship.
In whatever role they serve, make sure you do 3 things: (1) train them so they can do their job with confidence, (2) give them a specific set of expectations so they know what the boundaries are, and (3) have them make a commitment to the ministry so they will be making a personal investment in something worthwhile. Successful completion of their commitment will give them a positive first impression of serving in ministry.