Sunday, January 9, 2011

Youth Group Question

For those of you who have Youth Groups at your church, I have a questions about supervision. We would like to set up a Youth Group lounge area at the church. This would be an area that the kids (7th-12th grade) could have class and then hang out in during coffee hour. I am thinking that it should be required to have an adult (two?) in the room at all times. What do you all say?


Anna Snoeyenbos said...

Yes! Absolutely for supervision. As someone who has recently (last 10 years) been in a UU youth group, I can vouch that adults are generally way too liberal about supervision and structure and it can be sketchy at times for the girls.

Amy Peterson Derrick said...

As someone in the same boat as Anna (was a youth but 10 years ago, and now a DRE) I TOTALLY agree that UU adults are waaaaaaayy too lax on supervision. When I was a youth too many adults felt that it showed distrust in the youth by not allowing them to show that they could follow the rules on their own. I think that, what happens instead is that the youth think that adults don't care enough to be there with them. Also, this is not just about making sure that they are are being appropriate with other youth, but to protect them as well. Besides, I can't tell you how violated and unsafe I felt when other youth would start making out (and beyond!) in the youth group room.

One last point, the focus in senior high needs to include making the youth a part of the greater adult community, not further separating them. They may grunt and groan when the youth group room is "closed" after class, but in order to make sure that the church community is fitting the needs of the youth into young adulthood, their presence is necessary (for them AND the adults in the community).

plaidshoes said...

Thank you Anna & Amy. I tend to side on the "more supervision" then "less" and feel in the minority with that view. You made me feel a lot better about it! Amy - s/o in our discussion at church also brought up your idea of incorporating the teens into the larger church at coffee hour. I totally agree. I am just not sure how you get the teens to agree or understand the importance of it. Any ideas?