Um, what do you mean by "small group" time?
Like classes with a teacher. Where maybe 7 kids meet in a group with a leader and look at the bible together and pray and do some colouring in.
Up front teaching. Connecting with kids in a smaller group seems to be more effective. It is too easy for kids in a larger group just to drift off in concentration. Unless, of course, you are a super teacher like Mrs R!
Do you mean giving up one in your sunday school program or just you as a teacher not doing one part of the program anymore?If you mean cutting one out of your sunday school program, I would say ditch the up front teaching. Kids learn a lot more by doing, than just listening. It is also easier for them to ask questions in a small group and for you as a teacher to check their understanding.If you mean, as a teacher, just to doing one part (but somebody else does it, then I think it depends a lot on your personality, time available, and program being used.
Cutting one from the program for a whole term.We are having issues with one of our groups at church. Because of the age spread of our kids and a lack of leaders, we've got preps-year 2 in one group. And within this group there is a great diversity of personalities and christian experience. Very hard group to manage. Preps can't read at all. Years 2s can. I taught this class last term and felt no one learnt anything in group time. The kids went away knowing more and I felt better able to answer questions in a group of 200 than in this particular kid mix. I wonder if to make the small group thing really work, you need to have really small groups (3 or 4 kids) rather than 7 to 10 kids.Thoughts?
The large group is good for quality control - you get a decent return on the time invested in making something topnotch. If you're worried about overloading group leaders, time wise, this is a good way of filling a program. Or if they're terrible. Etc - really depends on the situation.We're a very small example group - we run three ages that some weeks may only have one or two in some of the age groups. Not a model of efficiency, but aiming for a model of appropriateness. So our youngest group reaches into primary school, but once they can read, they move up to the next group (shock, horror, even in the middle of a term!), and then at yr 4 they go up to the oldest group. Aside from a kids spot in church, we've pretty much got no all-in time.