Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Music in the smaller youth group.

Crossfire currently averages around five or six kids a week. On my mind lately has been the question how to do music/singing with a group this small. Obviously we’re hoping to grow, and music should get easier as we do, but because the group is currently quite small, it makes group singing a little awkward. Does anyone have any tips on how do music well in a small context like this?

Currently we go into morning church (it's on at the same time) for the first 10 minutes – which generally includes a couple of songs, and then we leave with the Sunday School kids during the announcements - but don't do any more singing in our group. I’d eventually like to do it ourselves, and have the kids come straight to crossfire rather than go to church first, but I’d like to have a plan for doing music in a small group before making that step.

Any ideas?


David said...

hey sam. i continue to praise Jesus for the new ministry you have begun at church. super exciting.

great post too... looking forward to reading some good ideas.

we need to make sure dan godden comes over and gives some input... he's thought about it a bit too.

one thing quickly from me:
i think with a small group you don't think a band is necessary...
a guitar playing vocalist is enough. BUT - something i've done in scripture classes before is give different percussion instruments to people. that can be fun and include those in the group.

i reckon a good way to view that small youth group singing time is like a camp fire?? everyone is happy to sing around the camp fire even if there's only 3 of you. so you could maybe even call it "camp fire time". as part of it... it might be sitting in a circle - sharing stuff about how you've been encouraged etc... sing a song or 2 or 3... pray.

i can picture it now.

i think cd's sound silly... big or small group.

if no-one knows how to play a guitar... get a $60 one from the shops and someone can easily learn. leanr 3 chords... and you'll be well on your way!!

there's some rambling.


SamR said...

Thanks Dave,

I think sitting in a circle is a great idea. I think the dynamic of a mall group is my main concern - so maybe sitting in a small group is a good thing to try! Guitar playing is no worries - me and one of the other leaders can both play.

I agree with CD's sounding a bit silly. A lot of our young kids groups do that, but I've never thought it works.

Libby said...

I was thinking that the camp fire circle idea was a good one too, and the guitar/vocalist. I think that you have to consider the group as well. If you have a group of kids who like music and singing then it would be great but if they aren't interested in it then you might need to reconsider, or be happy singing to them on your own and helping them learn to love singing about and to our great God!

Dan said...

It's all about culture. I introduced singing to my small group last year. They hated it and came up with any excuse to cut it from our meeting time because it felt weird to sing to each other so blatantly. Over time the feelings changed and the people came to cherish the time singing together. It took around three months of only hearing my own voice and that got tiring but it has paid of through perseverence. The same will probably be true for Crossfire. Step out and do what does't feel comfortable and cop some awkward moments for the sake of the three month goal of having a youth group that has hearts filled with thankful songs.

SamR said...

Hey thanks Dan, I think we'll give it a go next term. I'm ok with just hearing my own voice - for a while at least!

David said...

I'm ok with just hearing my own voice - for a while at least!

it's not you i'm worried about - it's the others in earshot!

Rich said...


my youth group used to be like that where 3-6 kids came every week. our youth pastor took up guitar, and basically led the praise with us.

what he did is, he learned a whole bunch of songs (he was really dedicated), and printed them out in booklets. and let us choose which songs we wanted to sing, and in the end we had songs that we would always choose like "favorites." and such. but, you might want to be like "we'll do 3 new songs today, and 2 old ones" or something.

as for liking singing, you basically need to get girls to come to youth group. for some reason they tend to enjoy singing more, and then the guys will follow. =) good luck!