Guest Post: Using YouTube in Your KidMin

I am currently serving on a mission trip with my sweet friends in Belize. My friend, Amy Young, shares today’s content. Amy is a young and creative leader who I’ve had the privilege of knowing since she started in children’s ministry. She serves at Sixth Street Baptist Church in Alexander City, Alabama. Thank you, Amy, for sharing this creative idea for engaging kids!

Children love electronic devices and all the applications that come with them. I know three year olds who can unlock iPhones and have their favorite apps open almost faster than I can check the time. One of those favorite apps is YouTube. On any given Sunday morning in The Kids Room at Sixth Street, kids chat about the latest videos on their favorite channels. The content is anything from kids playing with popular toys to silly skits and stunts. They watch video game commentaries, eggs hatching, soap carving, sports clips, and shorts from their favorite TV shows. The majority of these videos have millions of views but have little to no educational or spiritual benefits.

I had a thought: if kids are going to constantly watch YouTube videos, why not give them something worth watching that has the potential to spark God-talks in the home and to help kids grow in their knowledge of the Lord? I am not an advocate for kids spending large amounts of time on devices watching videos, but they are doing it nonetheless. Therefore, I recently revamped the SSBCkids YouTube channel to utilize something kids are already using in order to create a platform that redeems some of the time they spend on their tablets by providing Christ-centered content for kids. The videos can be used by parents for family worship times, by sick or busy kids who miss a service, or by kids who want to share with their friends what they learned at church.

Starting a YouTube channel is easy, especially if you have a Google account (if not, Google accounts are also easy). Here’s how you can do it:

  • Navigate to YouTube.com, sign-in with your Google account, and click on the gear icon to get to your account settings.
  • Click on Create New Channel, and fill in the necessary information. It takes some time to setup a new channel, but it is worth the effort when you think about the millions of kids who use YouTube everyday. There are many helpful articles and videos which detail each step in creating a channel.
  • Once it is all setup, use the Upload button at the top of the screen to put video content onto your channel. Content can include lesson reviews, parenting tips, leader trainings, etc. I use iMovie on a Mac computer to edit and format videos, but any movie-making application should work. Be sure to give credit to artists when you use music or other non-original content in your videos.
  • Share the channel’s website with parents in your ministry, and encourage them to subscribe to receive a notification when you upload new videos. It is also helpful to integrate your channel with your website and other social media accounts.

Your channel can be a powerful tool to equip parents and kids with resources which help them grow in their knowledge of and relationship with Jesus.

SSBCkids YouTube Channel: http://youtube.com/SSBCkids

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