Ask The Source

Are games and fun activities appropriate teaching tools?


Hi my name is Heidi Fries and I am a new youth leader at a local church in my community. My best friend is the other youth leader with me. My problem is that we have different views on how we should teach the youth. She wants the “traditional, read out of the Bible” kind of lessons, where I am the one who thinks we should play games and have fun while learning the parables. I don't know how I can show her that the youth would have much more fun my way, since they complain the whole time through her lessons. I have finally convinced her to let me teach next month. Do you have any suggestions for me?

Heidi, Greenwood



Wow- “complain the whole time through her lessons.” Some friend you are! 🙂

Good question: Are games, activities, or fun discussion starters appropriate or should we just “read the text?”

I “speak to” and “program” audiences of all sizes and I always use activities, openers, and stories. Most teachers agree that when you teach you should target different learning styles. Students learn in different ways (most scholars agree on AUDITORY, VISUAL and KINESTHETIC learning styles- hearing, seeing, touching/doing) . In short- use activities, visual aids, etc.

The younger the student is, (jr. high, underclassmen, etc.) the more I incorporate fun and games into my time. If you don't provide it- students will find it somewhere else. Besides- we should be providing much more than just academics . . . FELLOWSHIP for example.

But- remember- have this discussion with your friend and co-worker “in love.” You want to be careful and not act like you have all the answers. God may be using her in incredible ways, we can't forget that.

For more on programming- check out my articles PLANNING FOR AN IMPACT where I touch on this subject.

Hope I was a help.



Jonathan McKee

Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Guy's Guide to FOUR BATTLES Every Young Man Must Face; The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices; If I Had a Parenting Do Over; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers on Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.

Reply your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*