Thursdays Are For Training - Know Your Purpose

Last Thursday I introduced a series of training posts that will follow the six steps of leading a VBS as outlined in LifeWay's VBS 2015 Administrative Guide for Directors. Step 1: Know Your Purpose and Theme You may think knowing the purpose of VBS seems too elementary to even discuss. After all, don't we all know why we conduct VBS? Of course you know why you conduct VBS, and I know why I conduct VBS, but do we agree?  The truth is, gather a group of VBS leaders in a room and you will ... Continue Reading

Begin Well! Finish Strong!

Good morning VBS Leaders! It's March 3, and VBS is just around the corner! If this news makes you happy and you are performing cartwheels in front of your computer, you are probably well on your way to having workers enlisted, resources purchased, and schedules finalized. But, if you are one of the multitude in the wailing and gnashing of teeth crowd and uncertain of where to begin, take heart! We are here to help. Stop right now and check out these eight FREE VIDEO SESSIONS designed to ... Continue Reading

Advice From the Experts - Cutting Costs

The best VBS leaders are learners, and the best learners enjoy sharing with others what they have learned through trial and error. Following are words of advice that have been collected through the years from great leader-learners just like you. Establish limits on reimbursements for teachers purchasing their own supplies. Decorate fewer rooms but use each room more often. Assign two groups to the same room and rotate them in and out. This will save on classroom supplies as well. Start ... Continue Reading

LifeWay's New Explorer Bible

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 by Andrea Spikes       We have heard many of you comment wanting a full Bible, not just a New Testament, to give your VBS kids, and so it’s here! VBS has partnered with Explore The Bible™ to release the Explorer Bible. It is the first time we have published a full Bible for VBS, which is exciting news. What is even more exciting is that the Explorer Bible will continue to be sold after this summer and so can be bought to partner with your fall curriculum. This ... Continue Reading

Thursdays Are For Training

Leading a Vacation Bible School - especially for the first time - can seem like a journey off the map. Whether following in the footsteps of a legacy or charting your own course, VBS can be overwhelming. Especially when you consider most of us led our first VBS as a result of someone - typically the pastor - walking up to us on a Sunday morning saying, "We need you to direct our VBS this year. There's really nothing to it. All you have to do is enlist workers, order resources, and get the word ... Continue Reading

Hands-on Mission Project for Journey Off the Map

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Would you like to teach your kids about serving others and being on mission right where they are? This year we have a great mission project that is totally customizable to your church and community. At one time or another many people may find themselves experience some "off the map" circumstances. During those times we can provide comfort and encouragement to those who are less fortunate than ourselves. This year involve your kids in making "Off the Map Bags" to give to children in a local ... Continue Reading

Help Us Plan Preview 2016

You probably think the headline to this post is a mistake. Right? How can I (why would I) be talking about VBS 2016 Preview when most churches are just beginning to think about VBS 2015? When it comes to events as large as Preview we are always planning a year or more in advance. We have Preview dates on the calendar of one location for the year 2020. Evaluation is a big part of planning. We are continually evaluating throughout the events. In fact, we made changes to the Fort Worth and ... Continue Reading

Advice from the experts - Scheduling

The best VBS leaders are learners, and the best learners enjoy sharing with others what they have learned through trial and error. Following are words of advice that have been collected through the years from great leader-learners just like you. Include missions rotation videos and teaching resources during the large-group worship rally or during snacks. Extend worship rally time by a few minutes and include more music in place of the music rotation. For a smooth rotation schedule, use ... Continue Reading

Scheduling Ideas To Increase Time and Space

A lack of space or time can be great challenges to a VBS schedule. While it may be impossible to add hours to the clock or additional rooms to the church building, there are ways to stretch or increase both time and space. Use recreation as an early arrival activity. Weather and space permitting, move recreation activities to the front lawn beginning 30 minutes prior to the advertised starting time. Serve a quick snack as kids are transitioning between two rotations, or between the opening ... Continue Reading

Maximize VBS Registration Opportunities

Registration is a necessity of VBS, yet we rarely give it much attention. After all, what is easier than collecting names and ages? But how many opportunities are lost when we take the registration process for granted? Here are a few takeaways from a discussion I recently had with a group of VBS Leaders. Registration is typically the first contact families have with your VBS and church. First impressions are powerful and lasting. The registration process (both online and in person) should ... Continue Reading