Preparing Your Child’s Heart for Sunday School

As a teacher, I really appreciate when students come to Sunday school readily prepared for the morning. It greatly improves the classroom experience for both volunteers and students. Parents, here are a few simple things that can make a huge difference:

  • Make your Sunday morning routine as stress-free as possible by setting out clothes the night before, planning a simple breakfast, and having your child’s Bible and any other supplies ready to go.
  • Review classroom responsibilities and proper behavior guidelines with your child.
  • Be on time and make sure your child has used the bathroom before class.

In addition to these physical preparations, it’s also important to prepare your child’s heart for Sunday school. What kind of heart preparation am I talking about? Focus on two main things:

  1. Impress upon your child the immeasurable importance of receiving instruction from God’s holy Word.
  2. Guide, encourage, and challenge your child to rightly respond to the instruction they will receive. Responding with genuine faith in Christ is evidenced by growing love, devotion, obedience, and worship of Him.

What are some tangible ways to prepare your child’s heart? Here are a few suggestions:

  • At the beginning of a new Sunday school year, spend time talking about the importance of knowing and understanding God’s Word—the most important instruction of all! Read and talk about verses like these:

2 Timothy 3:15-17

John 20:31

Psalm 19:7-11

Psalm 119:12-16

Use verses like these to impress upon your child the necessity of paying careful attention to biblical instruction during Sunday school. It’s infinitely more important than learning math, a musical instrument, a sport, a new game, etc. Our eternal happiness depends upon it!

  • Take a visible interest in your child’s Sunday school instruction. Before Sunday arrives, take time to review and discuss the previous week’s lesson. Go beyond merely recalling facts and details. Encourage personal application: What does mean for your life? How should you respond to God? What is He calling you to think, be, and do? If you take a deep interest in what is taught, your child will be more likely to do so, too. (Truth78 provides take-home pages for each of our curricula lessons to help you do this.)
  • Pray with and for your child before class each week. Ask the Lord to give your child an attentive mind, a tender heart, and a submissive spirit toward God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit would be at work to nurture genuine faith in Christ, and give your child a greater love for Christ and a growing desire to follow His ways. (The drive to church affords an opportune time to do this!)
  • Talk to your child and pray with him regarding having a humble heart that looks to the needs of others in the classroom. (See Philippians 2:3.) Encourage your child to be a blessing in the way he speaks and acts toward his teachers and other students.

Additionally, talk to your child’s teachers during the year to ask how your child is doing and address any concerns. Express thankfulness to them and be willing to make adjustments where and when needed. Be discerning: Is your child experiencing a problem due to lack of interest in spiritual things? Or is there a genuine issue within the classroom? Yes, there are less than ideal classroom situations—inadequate staffing, not enough classroom space, poor depth of biblical instruction, etc. Be sure to address these in an appropriate manner, within the leadership structure of your church.