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3 Keys to Leading Preschoolers in Worship

leading preschoolers in worship

From the earliest years of our lives, music plays an important role. Before we have an amazing vocabulary or perfected speech we start learning “The ABCs,” “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star,” or even “Jesus Loves Me.” That’s why we need to learn about leading preschoolers in worship.

Most kids in your preschool ministry can’t read, yet their brains are such a powerful machine that it soaks up these little melodies and phrases to help us learn, remember and imagine.

A few years ago a Bible verse popped out at me and has become my verse for leading worship.

“God, brilliant Lord, yours is a household name. Nursing infants gurgle choruses about you; toddlers shout the songs that drown out enemy talk, and silence atheist babble.” Psalm 8:1&2 (MSG)

That means that when a two-year-old sings “How Great Is Our God,” miracles happen. When a four-year-old shouts, “Jesus Is My Best Friend, He’s always there for me!” the words they sing are taking root in their life and their spiritual development.

Let’s discover together three keys to how we can be leading preschoolers in worship.

#1 Happy and Joyful Songs:

Kids love to have fun. They bounce around, jump up and down and dance all day until Mom tells them it’s time for bed. By having songs that are fun and filled with happiness, kids get to be their young and full-of-energy selves. A song like “I Like To” is a great example of high energy, jumping and dancing but also a message that “Jesus loves me” to be planted deep in their hearts. I believe that through every wiggle, jump and spin God is honored and pleased with these children praising Him.

#2 Worship and Celebration Songs:

A few years ago I made a simplified version of the song “How Great Is Our God” that’s just the chorus and the bridge. I can’t tell you how many parents came up to me not only impressed but overwhelmingly touched that their three-year-old was worshipping to a song that declares the greatness of our God. These young kids get it! Worshipping a God they can’t see is not far-fetched for them. It’s easy for them to imagine their Creator as the one who is great and worship to be praised.

#3 Experience and Learning Songs:

Because our brain learns with music, a song that goes along with your teaching is a great way for kids to get home and remember what they learned in class that Sunday. So finding a song that is about that same Bible character you’re teaching about. Or a song about “love” when you’re teaching “loving one another” helps drill home the point to them. An example would be the song “2 By 2” when you’re teaching about Noah and the Ark. Just like an object lesson or a costume character, these types of songs uses the child’s imagination to understand the story that’s been told.

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Yancey Arrington is the Teaching Pastor at Clear Creek Community Church in League City, Texas, a suburb of Houston, where he has served since 1998. He is husband to Jennefer and father to three sons; Thatcher, Haddon and Beckett. He is a graduate of Baylor University (BA Religion), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Master of Divinity with Biblical Languages), and Covenant Seminary in St. Louis (Doctor of Ministry). You can find more of Yancey's thoughts and work at his blog, YanceyArrington.com, or follow him on Twitter at @yanceyarrington. Tap: Defeating The Sins That Defeat You is his first book.