Control Tools

A control tool is a re-focusing tool. It is a way of drawing children back into a small or large group discussion without having to say, “Listen up,” Hush,” or “Eyes up here,” and it is a great transition between activities. The most common and most effective control tool is any question you ask the kids to which they give a response. They might yell some responses, whisper others, and might even use an accent or a funny voice. Control tools re-focus the kids on the leader, teaches them an important point, and is a thousand times better and more effective than shushing your kids.

Sample Control Tools

SAY: When I say, “Who should be number one in your life?” I want everybody to say, “Jesus!”

Other Samples
  • Leader–”God’s got a gift…” / Students–”For me and it’s free!”
  • Leader–”The truth is…” / Students–”Jesus lives!”
  • Leader–”What are you?” / Students–”I’m Special!”
  • Leader–”Who does Jesus love?” / Students–”Meeeeeeeee!”
  • Leader–”God’s got a call…” / Students–”For us all!”
  • Leader–”What’s life all about?” / Students–”It’s all about Jesus!”
  • Leader–”Big or small” / Students–”God cares about it all.”
  • Leader–”God loves who?” / Students–”You!”
  • Leader–”Keep your eyes on…” / Students–”Jesus!”
  • Leader–”Have no fear…” / Students–”Jesus is near!”
  • Leader–”Listen…” / Students–”And obey!”
  • Leader–”Who is Jesus?” / Students–”Jesus is the way!”
  • Leader–”Heyyyyy!” (“Hey,” just lengthened) / Students–”Hoooo!” (“Ho,” just lengthened) / Both–”Jesus is in my soul. Huh!” (with a kick on the “Huh!”)

(Visit the Wristband Store for a great way to remind your kids of sayings such as these.)

Almost any key point can be turned into a control tool. Have fun with them. Include accents in them. have some that are slow, some that are fast, some that are whispered, and some that are yelled. Have kids compete to see which side can be the loudest. Remember, an effective children’s ministry isn’t always a quiet children’s ministry. Or, have the boys verse the girls in a loudness competition. And you can also tell the kids that anytime you see them for the next month you might ask them the question of the month–i.e, “Who should be number one in your life?”

“You might be walking down the hall and suddenly I might be right there in front of you and I might ask you this question…You might be picking your nose and suddenly I might be right there in front of you and ask you this really important question…Or, you might be crawling out of the bathroom and suddenly I might be right there in front of you. I might even kneel down (kneel down in front of a girl and put my hands together and ask you this very, very important question…and no, it’s not, ‘Will you marry me?’ I’m going to say,  ’Who should be number one in your life? Jesus! Now, let’s have a boy verses girl competition to see who can say it louder. Are you ready, boys? Who should be number one in your life…”