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POLL: 6th graders – in or out?

 —  July 24, 2012 — 7 Comments

Just curious to see if your 6th graders are included in your youth ministry or not – in our context right now several of the area schools have moved to middle school (that includes 6th graders) while we have remained our traditional junior high ministry (7th and 8th only). Not sure if there is a significant advantage one way or the other – would love to hear your thoughts in the comments and vote now!


Josh Griffin


7 responses to POLL: 6th graders – in or out?

  1. My philosophy has always been, whatever your school district determine when middle school starts is often the best way to determine what the desirable age for your ministry. That way there is no confusion for parents thinking, “Is my child in Children’s Ministry or Middle School Ministry?”

    When it become difficult is when your schools are spilt within the range of your church

  2. Our schools all have 6th grade as part of the middle school. In order for the students/families to know exactly where they stand, we start them at the same time as the schools.

  3. This coming year will be our first year of including 6th graders. We have always been 7-12, but with a restructure of Sunday School classes (which drives all ministries… SBC thing LOL) it was needed to bring them up. My one requirement was that we must split the group into 6-8 and 9-12. Not sure how this will play out in the future and with our midweek get together, but change is ok and we will roll with it. The one issue that I have is the incoming 7th graders that aren’t happy that the kids younger than them don’t have to wait another year.

  4. Our Youth Ministry meets Sunday nights. There is a Junior High (7th and 8th) and High School. Our Sixth grade has their own separate ministry on Sunday mornings where they get seperate curriculum than the regular childrens ministry.

    There is a big difference in maturity between 6th and 7th graders even with just one year.

  5. We don’t include 6 or 7. I would like to include 7’s but our system here is elementary school k-7 and high school 8-12. We tried an 7,8s as our junior high this past year. Unfortunately due to differences in schools there was a lot of animosity. We decided to go back to 8/9 JR and 10-12 Sr High.

    We will see how this goes.

  6. We do 6-8 because that is what most of our schools do. There is a huge difference between a 6th grader at the beginning of the school year and at the end. I see a couple benefits: youth ministries tend to be more relational than children’s ministries–I’d rather give a 6th grader an opportunity to join a small group than not have the option. I love having three years instead of two to pour into students (not that they disappear in 9th grade). Also, 6th graders are already thinking about issues of gender and sexuality that are unlikely to be addressed in a children’s ministry.

  7. This year we are changing things up. Jr. Youth will be grade 5-7 and Sr. Youth will be grade 8-12. With what I see in the early onset of puberty and kids just being “older” it makes sense to bring them in at the point where they are starting to drift out of children’s min. I guess we will see what happens, but I am pretty excited about this change.

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