One of the most popular show for kids in upper elementary today is American Idol. Hosted by Ryan Seacrest, Idol is a reality show competition that has taking things to a whole new level in terms of discovering hidden and unknown talent.
KidzMatter, Inc. has a curriculum available for purchase, to piggy back in AI’s popularity, called “Who’s Your Idol?” It is designed as a 4-week curriculum loaded with videos and media images to teach kids about placing God 1st in their lives. Cost: a hefty $79. (I actually picked it up a CM Conference for $75.)
Likes: I like this curriculum a lot. It puts a “new face” on the issue of Idol worship and putting God first in our lives (Can we please get rid of the golden calf?). It uses an extremely popular show to speak directly into the lives of elementary kids. It is jam packed with options and all the resources you need to pull it off (except for the AI theme music b/c of copyright issues). The videos with the memory verse (hosted by Ryan SeaCOAST) and the Idol competition videos were big hits with the kids in my Children’s Ministry. There are even worship videos included for you to use.
Dislikes: THE COST! This is rather expensive for only 4 weeks. If the lessons are simply taken and done in the suggested format, I would not recommend purchasing it. However, with some adding of my own ideas (like adding in the story of Paul and Silas from Acts 16) I was able to extend the theme out for 8 weeks. That, in my opinion made it worth it. Perhaps KidzMatter could include an alternative 8-week plan within their materials for those wishing to extend it out???
Also a little disappointing were the videos for the worship songs, as they are a bit out-dated (with the notable exception of Every Move I Make) and not really useable given where our ministry is with kid’s worship. In another context, however, they may be fine and even a jump start into improving the worship program.
One last thing – and this is an admitted bias – the lesson plans include puppet scripts as a way to introduce the theme each week and sometimes to kick off the lesson. In a day in which puppets are quickly going by the wayside, I turned the scripts into live action between two volunteers to overcome that issue.
All in all, I would give it a B+. Well done KidzMatter.
Til Next Time,
Dean – KidTech Blog Contributor