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In the Director's Guide, we suggest hosting three different workshops to acquaint your volunteers with the VBS material and to help them present the gospel--Teacher Workshop; Volunteer Workshop; Gospel Workshop.
One of our test churches combines the gospel workshop with the Teacher and Volunteer workshops and offers the following thoughts:
1. For the teacher workshops, we follow all the teacher workshop ideas from the Director's Guide (part 1 and part 2) AND we have the gospel training, too, on the same night. (Sometimes we've done the gospel training as written in the Director's Guide, and sometimes we've had a children's pastor or other children's ministry person share tips on how to counsel a child after they've had the gospel presented to them.)
2. For the volunteer workshops, we do parts 1 and 2 from the Director's Guide, and include a section on gospel training on the same night. The gospel training is done as a whole group before everyone breaks out into their respective assigned areas at the end of the meeting.
We've done it as three separate workshops in the past, which also works, but currently, we're doing it this way.
The timing can really vary a lot, depending on how long you spend on each suggestion and if you do all or just some, but a ballpark length of time is between an hour and an hour and a half.
For our volunteer meeting, this can vary even more, however, because at the end of part 2 of the volunteer workshop, everyone goes to break out sessions (craft people to the craft leader, snack people to the snack leader, etc.). This can be quick, with another meeting of that team scheduled for a later time, or the leader may want to go ahead and go over everything relative to that specific area right then and there.
For example, our craft leader shows samples of every day's crafts and the teaching that is to take place. Then she talks about what the team needs to do to prepare for each of the day's crafts, and she passes out the supplies for people to take home. This is because we are preparing a large amount of crafts (about 1,400), so depending on your size, you may not have to get this specific.
We're interested in knowing how you host your workshops -- how long are they? what do you include? when do you host them?
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