Leading By Example

One way children learn is by watching and mimicking us and many times we forget that and focus only on the lesson at hand. Between the ages of three and five children begin to mimic the actions of those around them. Point in case, I was working on a project for a few weeks ago and was going over some design ideas. One of the designs included a child praying. I am a nanny for a three year old boy and after seeing that picture I saw him put his hands together in the “prayer motion” and bow his head. He doesn’t go to church, but he saw the picture and mimicked it.

Another example, maybe not so spiritual is the three year old has a baby brother. I was putting new clothes on him the other day and was tickling his belly. Now anytime the baby gets fussy his older brother comes over and tries tickling him and even mimics my voice trying to soothe him.

All kids do this to some extent. A lot of times, it isn’t the lessons we teach (don’t get me wrong, I think lessons are VERY important), but it’s our actions, our words, our mannerisms, that teach these kids how to act. Do the kids in your group or Sunday school class see you pray in “big church”? Do they see you at the altar? Do they see you worshiping? Are you consistent, because kids spot inconsistency a mile away.

I am learning more and more that I want to be “that person” the kids remember as they get older and start teaching Sunday school or even having their own kids. I want to be “that teacher” who made an impact in their lives.

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Amberle Kaiser is a kids prayer leader and Sunday school teacher at New Life Center in Bridgeton, MO.

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