Junior High Volunteers

Helpful Quick Reading:

Frequently Asked Questions:

What restrooms do students & leaders use during services?

During service, students should use the restrooms in the back of Genesis and adults should use the restrooms located in the Atrium. The upper elementary students also use the restrooms in the Atrium, so you may need to wait a moment if one of their leaders is monitoring the restroom.

What should I do if a student has been in the restroom for an abnormally long time?

Grab 2 adults of the same gender as the student. You can go into the restroom to check if both adults are present. If it seems to be a medical or safety concern, please grab a WOC staff member promptly.

How should I address students showing PDA?

We want to promote and set the expectations for healthy boundaries. If a student couple is pushing the boundaries, then it is appropriate to introduce yourself and simply say “Out of respect for those around you, please refrain from Public Displays of Affection while on campus. Thanks!”

Do we have snacks and water available for students?

On a typical week, we do not have snacks or beverages available for the broader student population. Should a need arise that is abnormal, speak with a Next Generation staff member and we can usually find a snack, if needed. Bottled Water is also available behind the concession stand. Adult leaders are permitted to grab a bottle of water as needed.

If a student does not have a Bible, what should I do?

If the student does not own a Bible and expresses a desire for one, let a Next Generation staff member know. We have Bibles on hand that we can give away to students in need.

What should I do if I suspect a student is harming themselves?
  • This question is a bit more complicated. Assuming there is no immediate danger to the student and those around them, then you should always default to involving a Next Generation Staff member. Together we will figure out the best way to move forward.
  • If a student is in immediate and/or imminent danger, notify a Next Generation Staff Member.
Can I walk a student out to their car to meet their parents?

It is always encouraged to meet the parents of your students any chance we get! However, do not walk a student into the parking lot without another screened adult present. It is one thing if you can see the student’s mom/dad parked alongside the sidewalk from the doors; It is another to walk a student into the parking lot.

What should I do if a student brings up a sensitive topic in small group?

While sometimes it is fitting to address such topics when they come up, it is often more appropriate to gently redirect the question and speak with the student individually after small groups have concluded, along with another Next Generation adult volunteer or staff member.

What should I do when a student speaks to me individually? The handbook states to always have two leaders.

When in a public space where other leaders and students present, you are encouraged to get to know the students! If a student asks to speak with you individually a second, WOC screened volunteer must be present for the conversation. Never meet privately with a student.

Small Groups Basics & Essentials:

Control What You Can Control
Each week, check your small group area and be intentional about things leading up to your group time. Is your area clean? Do you have enough chairs? Are they sitting in a circle? Do you have your SG Guide printed? Did you read through the guide before arriving? We cannot control or foresee all factors going into a night, but we want to be intentional with what we can control.
Start Light

The students will not respond as well if you jump straight into the deep end. Take a few minutes to breathe and relax. Let them settle in before diving deep. Icebreakers can be silly, but they can also be priceless when it comes to helping the students feel “at home”.

Good Boundaries

Boundaries in a small group are essential. Each small group will have different rules and boundaries. Have them create the boarders, they are more likely to come along if they have ownership! Good boundaries can be rules such as no cell phones, raise your hand before talking, no interrupting, stay on topic, etc.

Clear Purpose

What is the objective of the night? Do you know where the group is ending? If you start the group time with your end goal in mind, it is easier to navigate the conversation. Where are you leading them?

A great small group is discussion based. Your job is to listen to the students. Let them talk, direct them towards the overarching goal of the night. Help them connect the dots! Your job is not to teach, but to help reach them and guide them.
Group Size Determines Outcome
An ideal group size is 8 to 10 students. Once it starts growing beyond that it becomes increasingly difficult to have an effective small group discussion. Sometimes we cannot control how large our group is.
Nonverbal Communication & Physical Expression

Be aware of where you sit, how you sit, and what you are communicating through your body language. Let the students know you are engaged and listening to them! This is so simple, but so crucial.

The Best 30 Minutes of Your Ministry
  1. I 15 minutes before any event: Use this time to…
    •  Meet your students – Look for the students you know! If they brought any friends, introduce yourself and help them feel welcomed.
    •  Meet their families – Often times, parents will drop their student off in the Atrium. It may be a good time to meet them or some siblings.
    •  Help people connect – Lean on your students with leadership qualities to connect with newer students. S.A.L.T students are great for this!
    •  Engage your students – Utilize the game room and find a way to engage with the students. Any short game or activity will help both of you feel more comfortable!
  2. 15 minutes after any event: Use this time to…
    •  Process the night – Take this time to lean into your students a little bit more on an individual basis. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you find opportunities to invite others to lean in more uniquely based on the topics of the night.
    •  Follow up – Was there something in small groups that was said that requires direct attention? Did somebody have a big game this week that you want to get details on?  Did you give somebody a challenge last week that you need to follow up on? No matter if it is large or small, find ways to make personal follow ups with a few students each night. It will make a difference in your effectiveness!
    • Meet their familiesDuring pickup, parents will often come into the room. Find an opportunity to shake the hand of some parents. This will go a long way in establishing rapport with the family. it also lets the student know that you have a relationship with their parents which can go a long way in initiating accountability! You can also walk a student out to their car when appropriate.
    • Engage your students – Much like preservice, finding ways to have fun with your students is always a good thing. Engaging them with a game or conversation will go a long way in building that relationship.