While many children’s pastors accept the droopy eyelids, constant yawning, and fingernail-biting that’s a daily reality while preparing for VBS, you could be making the process a lot easier on yourself. Whether you spend all day making take-homes or begging for volunteers, these symptoms of exhaustion could be indicators that you’re making your VBS prep harder than it needs to be.
Here are some hacks that can make planning your VBS easier:
- Share decorations. Network with churches in your area that are using the same VBS program so you can share large décor items for your opening/closing area.
- Buy instead of make. Buy crafts/science experiments instead of trying to make them yourself. Don’t race around town looking for items or tear up your church supply closet in an effort to throw together themed crafts.
- Reuse your volunteers. Have the same volunteer lead your opening and closing celebration.
- Preregister kids. Preregister kids online and make a fast pass registration line for your preregistered kids on Day 1.
- Use teens as leaders. Use your church’s youth group as Crew Leaders and Assistant Station Leaders. A lot of times, it’s easier to get teens to volunteer instead of adults.
- Identify and assemble a decorating team early on. Many times you’ll find art teachers, professional artists, or talented teens right in your congregation.
- Choose a program that’s already been tested with real kids and crew leaders. If it’s already been tested, it’s bound to work!
- Ask small groups to make the snacks. Reach out to small groups within your church to assist with providing snacks.
- Order program supplies early in the spring. Don’t wait till two weeks before your VBS to order all your supplies! You are too busy to track packages online or stalk your city’s UPS truck the week before VBS.
- Find a VBS Mentor. Consider approaching a neighboring church that has a flourishing VBS, or network online with a seasoned VBS director who is using the same program as you.
What are some things that have you stressed out about VBS? Let us know in the comments below! If you didn’t already know about Group’s Easy VBS, I encourage you to check it out!