Tuesday, May 13, 2008

What are the dangers of using DVD curriculum?

We are blessed in this country with an abundance of great Bible resources. I have been blessed by many of them. Our church uses DVD curriculum for adult Sunday School and Home Bible Fellowships quite a bit.

I've had this growing sense in me that we should be very careful to limit our use of DVD teaching (and similar) .

What are the dangers in the local body of regularly using a DVD curriculum or lesson? I really am hoping for some great answers.

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8 Comments:

At 3:25 PM, Blogger Matt Proctor said...

tim,
i think DVD curriculum ignores God's ability to use people in the local body to minister to others in the local body. it also keep pastors from intentionally equipping the saints in different areas (in this case teaching). I also think it inhibits the development of relationships.

I agree it should not be 100% avoided, but maybe 95% avoided.

mp

 
At 4:44 PM, Blogger Todd said...

I would agree with everything Matt said and I would add that:

1) With a DVD, there is no interaction with the teacher. Often times, the subsequent discussion flounders because there is no way to respond back to the instructor.

2) With a DVD, we fall into a 'best practices' mode of doing church - "This is the best teaching on X, so let's watch it over having our own person teach it." Similar to Matt's comment, but with a different edge - God often uses weak things to display His glory (1 Cor. 1:18-31; the foundation of why I am in ministry - God uses weak things). This line of thought is counter to the business model of best practices.

3) Watching DVD's can also promote a real passivity when it comes to listening. It is like watching TV (well, it is exactly like watching TV). Such curriculum has it's place, but it should be used with caution.

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger Pastor Mark said...

I agree with Todd and Matt, mostly because they are smarter than me. Making a case for the 5% of the time when a DVD curriculum is helpful, I would say that it can be a great change of pace if you do use local teachers most of the time AND it is an opportunity to hear a really gifted communicator teach something that they have spent significant time preparing for.

No offense to my youth leaders growing up, but I learned a LOT from the videos that we watched. I learned from watching my youth leaders lives, but they weren't great teachers.

I just had to argue . . .

 
At 10:06 AM, Blogger Tim said...

I wonder who out there has written about this - or taken it seriously - cause I'd like to read about it.

 
At 9:44 AM, Anonymous Clint Hogrefe said...

There is another big reason why it may not be the best practice in the long run. It promotes laziness and minimal preparation by pastors and teachers. This is already an epidemic in the Evangelical church today, and video curriculum seems to encourage it. How many of us on Sunday or Wedensday afternoons really wished we had a good video to show our study groups that evening rather then spending a few hours in the study over our Bibles?

We have used quite a few DVD studies here and I confess that at times I didn't even preview the video because it was John Piper. Lesson: if I have an excuse to be lazy I seem to use it.

 
At 9:27 AM, Blogger Tim said...

Thanks guys so much for your comments. I am going to use these ideas with our church board and some ones I got on facebook.

Tim

 
At 11:38 AM, Blogger voni said...

There a great tool..but I can see how they might be an excuse for laziness. It defiantly appeals to our T.V. generation. Sometimes I think people are more moved by the T.V. then a real live person. which makes me wonder if we are looking for entertainment or growth. Does learning need to be boring though? I love the way you incorporate media into your teaching Tim. I think there is a happy balance there.

 
At 2:40 PM, Blogger TwistTim said...

Youth Pastor Tim,

Greetings from another Tim,

At my Church we went though the "When World Views Collide" DVD series by Ergun Caner on Wensday nights, and now we are going though a study on What different Denominations believe using the Rose Publishing Slide Show....

These are a good resource for studying such topics when you need to appeal to authority rather than letting one person mislead others though lack of knowledge....

but honestly.... it lets my Pastor get away with not having to research the subject as throughly as if he were pesenting it himself... so if one of those people he appeals to is wrong, how will we know?

As well, I must agree with another poster.... who said it leads to passivity of viewing..... now I am interested in these subjects, so I am going to learn it... but when others go that aren't... they can tune out as easily as a man tunes out soaps or a woman a football game......

and there are no handouts for the slide show... there was for the DVD series so at least we had a reason to follow tightly and get the answers.... now, it's easier to just sit and passively listen.....


the 5% rule is good.... youth want church to be church... when they get used to videos and slides and games and then grow up and have none of that.... then they get tired of Church and wander off.... many to never return.... nothing wrong with doing those things, but preach the word to them 95% of the time and when they leave the Youth Group they might stick around better....

 

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