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Connecting With Kids: 7 Simple Get-to-Know-You Strategies

connecting with kids

Connecting with kids is essential for any children’s ministry worker or helper. That includes kids you know well, a child attending for the first time, or a child who tends to be shy.

Sometimes we don’t connect because we’re more focused on parents. Or we’re too busy putting out fires. Sometimes we just don’t know the best approach for connecting with kids.

Whatever the case, anyone who leads and serves in children’s ministry needs to make connecting with kids a priority early (as in, as soon as they walk in the building or classroom) and often (as in, different situations throughout the service or event).

7 Tips for Connecting With Kids

These 7 simple strategies will help you make friends with children:

1. Make sure you see eye to eye.

This means you’ll need to get down to their level. Kneel down on one knee and look them in the eye as you greet them with a smile.

2. Don’t be afraid of (appropriate!) physical touch.

A gentle squeeze of the shoulder, a high five, or a pat on the head can go a long way. Just make sure to not invade physical space and to do it appropriately. Some kids are very shy about someone touching them, just like us big people.

3. Make them primary in your interactions.

It always bugs me when I see leaders engage in conversation with parents and completely ignore the kids. How about we give a quick hello to the parents and then get down on a knee to strike up a conversation with the kids? More often than not, this will go a long way with both the kids and the parents.

4. Know their name. 

I am terrible at remembering names. But our names are some of the most important words a person can speak to us, and it’s no different with kids. In fact, if you’ve been in KidMin for more than a week or two, you’ve no doubt had a kid come up to you and ask if you remember their name! Find ways to learn and remember names.