Every year we run through our expectations with our middle school students @ Hayward Wesleyan Church. We call it frontloading. We share with them what our expectations are upfront, instead of chasing their behavior after the fact. We revisit them from time to time as new students show up or as the overall group behavior dips.
Here are the expectations:
Doors open @ 6pm. msy starts promptly @ 7pm and goes until 8:30pm when we have snacks. We keep the building open till 9pm, while everyone gets picked up.
Once you are here you cannot leave unless your parent gives you written permission or talks to me on the phone. If you leave w/o our permission you cannot come back for 2 weeks. And we will call and let your parents know that you left.
We play games for the first 15 minutes or so, then do a Bible study for 30-45 minutes. Then we go to the gym and play some form of dodgeball for 30-45 minutes. Then at 8:30 we stop and have snacks, socialize, play some lightening (basketball game), and head home.
Please do not throw the rocks around our building. Please don’t throw snowballs at each other or the building in the wintertime, or pile drive people into the snow. Please don’t throw the crab apples from the crab apple tree in the spring.
Make sure you secure your valuables while you are here (cell phone, iPod, bicycle, backpack, sweatshirt, coat, etc). We are not responsible for the expensive stuff you bring here and leave laying around.
During msy you may use your phone during games, but not during Bible study. If you do, then we will hold your phone for you until Bible study is over.
Please be respectful of the leaders, other students, and yourself.
Check any negative attitudes at the door (it’s a poison that can derail this group and we won’t tolerate it).
Participation is required in all activities of the evening except for games (we will not force you to play games).
Absolutely no physical confrontation. What does that mean, Jeremy? Glad you asked! Fighting or play fighting. Wrestling. Smacking people on the back of the head. Tripping someone. Kicking someone’s shin.
No purpling. This means boy blue mixed with girl pink. This is not the place for you to cuddle, hold hands, hang and hug all over each other, kissing, making out, or being alone. This gets awkward for us adults to have to talk with you about this if you are purpling (and I imagine for you, too!), but we will talk with you.
msy is a privilege to be a part of, not a right. The above mentioned expectations are not meant just as another set of rules to follow, rather they help protect and provide a safe and stable environment where ALL middle school students would feel welcome and encouraged. If you should so choose to disrupt this environment by acting outside of the boundaries of these expectations, we will kindly ask you to remain at home. If we do ask you to leave for a while, it’s not because we don’t like you, it will be because your decision-making is affecting other students in a negative manner and you will be held accountable for your actions. If you mess up, we will work with you. If you don’t care, then it’s tough to work with you.
All to say, the msy staff really enjoys providing a place for middle school students to hang out together and learn about the God revealed in Jesus and how to walk in His ways. We are all looking forward to a great year @ msy!
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