- Duct tape
- Cable ties
- Insurance Forms
- Cell phone
Friday, February 5, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
- Short amount of reading. You can always go longer with something short, but you can't always go shorter with something long. The short readings allow you to "take a break" from long devo readings without taking a break from devos.
- Continually challenging. I've read a lot of these one page thoughts before, but feel challenged in a new and fresh way each day.
- Moves you to prayer. Usually when a devotion style gets tired for me, it's because I am focusing on what is being said to me instead of what I have to say to God. My Utmost always pushed me into an honest time of prayer because the time would feel incomplete without it.
- BONUS: Take-anywhere format. I didn't think this could count as an actual criterium, but it is definitely a bonus if you can take it wherever. This way you can give your devo life a zap without being tied to one spot. It really helped me when I saw that I could buy My Utmost as an iPhone app, and take it with me everywhere.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
- I have grown as a teacher. Illustrations, practical applications, use of video, etc. When I look back at my lesson plans from two years ago, there is no doubt in my mind that I have grown as a teacher. In the last few weeks, there have been entire lessons that I've thrown out and rewritten to get more practical, more relevant, or more middle school appropriate. The topic stays the same while the presentation shifts dramatically.
- I have impressed myself. While there have been weeks in which my "tweaking" has turned into rewriting, there have also been weeks that I've read past lessons and been touched by the truth in them. Then I think, "I wrote this?" And I'm super happy once again that I have a 2-year cycle that keeps taking the best and making it better.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
- Quickly. Don’t wait until their behavior bothers you. Set the rules during the good times, then enforce as needed.
- Not too tight, not too loose. Students shouldn’t feel like they are on a short leash the whole weekend. They should have room to roam, explore, and test; but they should also know their limits ahead of time and be allowed to fail while it’s still safe.
- Example: If you stay up all night, you still have to go to the sessions.
- Be consistent. Don’t make exceptions because the kid is cool, bribes you, uncool, or anything else. Every rule is fair if it is communicated and consistent.
Include everybody. There will be other churches at the camp, maybe even in your cabin. Make them part of your group. Let your actions teach our students.
Respect everybody. Don’t make fun of the kid that actually wants to sleep. Don’t let yourself fall into the Jr. High Boy pattern of making fun of everybody all the time. Don’t fall into the Jr. High Girl pattern of talking bad about the other girls when they aren’t there. Let your actions teach.
Be prepared to stay up late Friday night. They have been waiting for this for months. They will be eating extra sugar, drinking extra caffeine, and set to sit still on a bus for 2.5 hours. They will be up late.
- Encourage/challenge the extra energetic to more energetic activities (also encourage showers afterward).
- Try to avoid all-nighters, though this is quite the badge of honor for Jr. Highers.
Take advantage of one-on-ones. Walk to/from session. 2-player games. Opportunities to talk to your small group students will present themselves, especially if you are looking for them. Make the most of these times to follow up on previous issues, comments the speakers made, a noticed poor/great attitude, and lots of encouragement/compliments.
Expect more openness. Students tend to open up more when they are away from home. You need to expect it and look for it.
- Show that you can handle it. Don’t freak out or rush to bad advice. If they are pressing for answers you don’t have (or more information than you feel comfortable giving), you can always use the phrase, “Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.” Stay calm and listen, maintaining eye contact is huge along with other body language openness.
- Thank them for sharing and offer prayer.
- Follow up the next day/opportunity. They most likely will show awkwardness towards you, not sure of how their openness may have affected your relationship. Be sure to show love, but also make sure that your relationship doesn’t begin to revolve around this one issue (don’t let a single issue define them to you).
- Report appropriately. If this is an issue that needs to be brought to somebody in charge, don’t wait! If you’re not sure if it does or not, than it does.
Be a hero. Jr. Highers frontal lobe development is far from completely developed, leaving them with a lack of foresight and an inability to plan well. Make up for it by utilizing your developed frontal lobe.
- Bring an extra towel, extra blanket, or extra hygiene items. Jr. High boys are new to hygiene in general, and may not realize that 12 hours of Dodgeball requires a shower, which requires soap and a towel. I have purposefully packed an extra towel on every retreat for the past 5+ years, and it has been used every time. Jr. High girls are new to their menstrual cycle, and often embarrassed about it. If this happens on the retreat, be prepared to share! This will elevate you to “hero” status for the rest of your life.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
- cutting/self-injurious behavior
- self-image/personal identity
- drugs and alcohol
- homosexuality (currently realizing)