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Coaching Tips

Recruiting Quizzers

Thu, 14 May 2009 - 10:07 AM CST


One of the most effective ways to recruit is to turn your quizzers loose and let them recruit. A quizzer who is excited about quizzing is the best recruiter of all. Announcements in youth services and youth Sunday school classes are effective, too. Park Crest had a team before I came, but it wasn’t a competitive-level team. The first year, we divided the entire youth group into teams and gave them prepared questions over one chapter and quizzed for two Wednesday nights to introduce them to Bible Quiz. Out of that we gained a nucleus that served as the impetus for the program. I also do one-on-one recruiting when I see a student with the potential to be a good quizzer.

George Edgerly, Pastor, Iowa

The best method to use is have the quizzers do it themselves. This has been the best tool for me. Release the quizzers to recruit more quizzers for the team.

John Isett currently serves as the World Bible Quiz president.

Start Novice quizzing for your 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. These youth are the easiest to recruit because they usually have the least to do at this time. Every year when the new 6th graders enter our junior high youth group, I conduct a demonstration quiz using them and their parents. First, I get all of the 6th graders to come up and quiz on fun, easy questions over general Bible knowledge. Everyone who answers correctly receives a prize. This introduces them to the excitement of buzzing in and answering. Then I do the same with all of their parents. This hooks many to try quizzing.

Bryan Turner, Coach Christian Chapel, Tulsa, Oklahoma

Talk about it in youth group, make announcements, and conduct quiz matches in front of the group. Make announcements in the main service and put inserts in the bulletin. You can even talk about it in children’s church, as one of the activities they can get involved in as they make their way to the youth group. Obviously JBQ coaches talk about it with their teenagers. Quizzers can talk to their friends one-on-one, too.

In presenting Quiz to the congregation, list the many benefits of Quiz and help parents realize that sometimes they need to make choices for their children and encourage them to get involved in areas which will help them for life. In quiz you learn discipline, attitudes to have in competition, social skills, fellowship with other Christians, etc. Announce Bible Quiz in both the youth and adult services so the whole family hears about it. This way they can go home and discuss it as a family, regardless of who brings it up.

Marcae Robertson, former National Quizzer & Coach

First, make an announcement in youth group. Every year in August, the youth pastor allows me to take time on three Wednesday nights to talk to the youth group about quizzing. Second, encourage the quizzers to recruit. Third, recruit one-on-one. These are the three main ways I recruit.

Bill Chew, Former National Finals Coach.

I put together a video, and that works well. It’s top-notch; I put it together with the help of a man in our church who does this professionally. I show it in both Sunday morning services, to junior church, and in a quiz booth in the foyer. I also talk to youth personally, and we offer a two-week trial period. This way those who are unsure have an opportunity to check out the program.

We basically recruit all year long. Because the congregation is 100 percent behind Bible Quiz, we get a lot of “prime time.” One thing we do to spotlight the program is to have a quizzer quote an entire chapter for the congregation in both morning services and in the evening. We have the congregation call out a chapter and a quizzer quotes it straight through.

John Porter, Coach James River A/G, Ozark, MO

I’ve used every way imaginable. Word of mouth is a real key. People tell me I need to talk with a certain individual who shows propensity for the Word and learning and who really seems to enjoy it. My younger sister knows the young people well, and she would recommend people to me. For those who show an interest, I talk to their parents and let them know what Bible Quiz is all about. It takes a lot of person-to-person contact.

I usually make a pitch in front of the young people. This includes a mock quiz of about ten questions. We also have a quiz demonstration each year in front of the congregation on a Sunday night or morning.

Due to the excitement in the church, some potentials will attend a quiz tournament just to check Bible Quiz out. They usually end up joining the team. Sometimes people will move in from other parts of the country who have heard of our program and ask to be a part.

Mark Gilmer, Coach Centerville, GA

There are so many different ways to recruit new quizzers, and I would like to emphasize two methods that have been successful for me over the years.

The first method is based on current relationships. Bible Quiz is a relational ministry. Most Bible Quizzers want to quiz with friends, so the first method is to work with your current quizzers to help them recruit their friends into quizzing. Spend quality time talking to your current quizzers and helping them to figure out how they can approach their friends or acquaintances to join the following season. But really allow them to “recruit”, and you just provide them backup and support. Don’t wait until the season ends! Ideas include allowing them to bring a friend to a League meet, or even a team practice. Give their friend a Scripture Portion, even if it’s for the current year and you know they won’t be joining until the following season. Just something new and exciting will encourage them.

The other method may be a little controversial, but I like to use appeals to parents, and even apply parent peer pressure. Ask your current BQ parents to speak to “so and so” about their teen quizzing. Especially with young Jr-high students, they often have an “I don’t know” attitude to joining quiz. But excited parents can help encourage and, yes, sometimes almost force them to at least check it out and make a short-term commitment (I recommend a commitment to at least League I).

With both of these methods, there is also the “Noah” principle to remember – new quizzers often join “two by two”! Either they will join because they have a friend already quizzing, or they have a friend who will join with them. So make sure you’re helping to pair them up.

Just remember this is a relationship ministry, so recruit them in pairs, and use other people to help you recruit – your current or former quizzers, BQ parents, Youth Pastor, or Senior Pastor. Create a network!

Kent Kloefkorn., Bothell, WA

Recruitment of quizzers is a two-fold process.

First, a general positive awareness of Bible Quiz should be present in the church. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways--a bulletin board in a visible location with pictures of kids at meets with awards, announcements in the bulletin regarding successes at meets or tournaments, recognition of quizzers in kids church or youth group after meets or tournaments, or articles/pictures in church newsletters, to name a few.

Secondly, when it is actually time to recruit, a personal invitation works best. This invitation could be from a coach or a peer and could be to a practice, a meet or some other type of quiz event. Allow a recruitment process to take place, not a 'you-have-to-decide-today' decision.

In addition, here is an important rule I give to my quizzers: if you want to vent or complain about Bible Quiz, do it to a fellow quizzer--never to a non-quizzer. How do we expect to recruit new quizzers if they hear complaining from those involved about situations that are momentarily frustrating?

Pastor Lorna Albanese, Coach Evangel Heights A/G, Sarver, PA

My wife and I teach in the 5th/6th grade Sunday School class. I’ve always believed the best way to build a ministry is from the ground up so when we first began three years ago, we started with beginning Novice age quizzers.

To recruit the team, we bring in a buzzer set to class. We give the kids a sheet with about 8-10 verses from a gospel or from a solid passage in one of the epistles. We divide the kids into teams and explain that we’re going to have a tournament, quizzing over the sheet in front of them. They are allowed to review it together as a team before quizzing and then they are allowed to have it on the table in front of them while quizzing; we also allow them to look at it when answering questions.

We then bring out big candy prizes for the winning team and the biggest candy bar we can find for the highest individual scorer.

We have never failed to generate great excitement with this approach. The kids really want that candy bar and the quizzing is intense and a lot of fun. Invariably, we are asked repeatedly to bring the buzzers back in to do some more. We typically do this once a quarter.

Sean Davis, Coach Resurrection Church, Holland, Michigan

It is difficult to recruit quizzers if the students within your church do not know who you are. As a Bible Quiz coach, you need to be visible and involved. Ideally, you should be working with the youth pastor and attending the weekly youth meetings. Not only does this show solidarity between the youth ministry and the Bible Quiz ministry, but it also provides a great opportunity to network with potential quizzers. Someone that knows you and knows your passion is more likely to join than someone who just heard you talk about Bible Quiz from the pulpit one Sunday morning.

The most beneficial recruitment for my quiz ministry this year came from one of my quizzers. She is rather quiet and not the best quizzer, but she loves doing Bible Quiz. She approached me at the beginning of the year and asked if three of her friends could quiz with us this year. Do not take the job of recruiting completely on your shoulders. Encourage your quizzers to reach out and bring in new students to the ministry.

Jason Martin, Coach Crossway A/G, Valencia, PA

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