For years we’ve been titling generational people groups. We’ve had Baby Boomers (born 1943-1960), Generation X (born early 1960’s-early 1980’s), then Millennials (born late 1970’s-2000’s), sometimes called Generation Y. They are the Facebook and MySpace generation, but according to this article in the Washington Post, this generation doesn’t like titles and doesn’t really know where they fit in so some of them have titled themselves as generation Nintendo.
Churches, children’s & youth ministries, and classrooms must recognize that Millennials/Generation Y want to be interactive. We must design our worship settings around experiences in which each individual can be involved. The teacher is the facilitator and the students are the teacher-learners. The facilitator-teacher offers the curriculum and gives the directions and the students learn by doing and participating.
In churches we can teach using video and media techniques then offer interactive games to reinforce the message. These games may look like active play time but the lesson is being reinforced and taught again through interactive play. In classrooms we can offer learning centers of various forms to teach concepts and skills for children to participate in the learning process. It looks like play time but they are learning valuable skills through play.