Training Begins with Leadership
If leaders are not convinced of the need to personally become better equipped in ministry, they will have a harder time convincing teachers of its importance. As they exhibit a humble, teachable spirit, teachers will come to realize that everyone needs to learn and grow, including them.
Further, leadership needs to be on the same page regarding the ultimate goal of teaching and basic philosophy of ministry and how best to implement that approach in their ministries. This takes coming together to learn and grow as a ministry team. When leaders each have their own agendas and don't come under a broad umbrella, it can be confusing for people to really know what is the church's Biblical education goal. Resource: Christian Education Leadership Team Training
Training Should be Tailored to Your Church & Your Teachers
Some content will be pertinent to all Bible teachers everywhere that is very important to the teaching-learning process.
For examples, read: Different Places, Same Needs
However, while we all can use reminders about a variety of topics, how much more effective if the training fits the specific needs of the teachers, their skill levels, learning styles, teaching experience, etc.
For examples, read: Different Places, Different Needs
Training Requires a Plan
Without a plan it will be too easy to get lax on teacher training or miss providing essential training.
- How are you going to determine what training teachers really need?
- How are you going to provide that training?
Teacher Training Must Be On-going
Part of the plan you develop involves scheduling on-going training for all teachers. Teacher Training isn't just for new teachers. No one has arrived, no matter how long the person has been teaching and no matter how much previous training the person has received. Read: Legitimate Excuses for No Teacher Training?
Without on-going training, teachers can . . .
plateau. -- They stop improving.
get stuck in a rut. -- They fail to use new ways of teaching.
become delusional. -- They think their teaching is better than it is.
experience frustration. -- They don't know how to fix problems.
quit. -- They don't feel supported.
When training is modeled by the leaders and is tailored to your teachers, you will experience a higher success rate in teacher participation. Yes, people are busy and don't want another meeting. Who said teacher training is all about going to another meeting?
You can use a variety of means beyond attending in-house group training sessions or going to an outside seminar/conference. You can meet teachers where they are in terms of time commitment and preferred style of learning. Click below for suggestions about the various means:
articles (online & hardcopy)
computer & internet courses
round table format or panel
visit & observe another class
Get even more ideas for using all of the teacher training means to the left in this resource along with a one page resource assessing your training approach and a two page survey to assess teachers' needs for training. (Please Note: This module is part of the Christian Education Files Download but can be ordered separately.)