Where are the students? How can we go to them?

This is a compilation of a Post-It Note Brainstorm during 2015 Well.

Two questions were asked:

  1. Where are the students in your community?
  2. How can you effectively go to where they are – Incarnational ministry?


Where are the students in your community?post it notes

  1. Eli’s Coffee Shop
  2. Wal-Mart
  3. Coffee Shops
  4. Dairy Queen
  5. Friend’s houses
  6. Movies
  7. In the bigger neighboring cities
  8. Each others’ houses
  9. Simple Room
  10. Parties
  11. MccDonald’s
  12. Park
  13. Twitter
  14. Facebook
  15. Instagram
  16. Snapchat
  17. City pool
  18. Parking lots
  19. The pool
  20. welcome wellSquare downtown on weekends
  21. Ice cream shop
  22. Other youth in town
  23. Dances
  24. Gaming at home
  25. Band and choir concerts
  26. Football games
  27. Hunting
  28. Race tracks
  29. Library
  30. Downtown
  31. High school games
  32. Sporting Events
  33. Pool
  34. Social Media
  35. Pinky’s
  36. The Tree
  37. wellPerdue’s
  38. Casey’s in the mornings
  39. Starbucks
  40. Maggie’s house
  41. Working in fast food restaurants
  42. Working at jobs in general
  43. Dances
  44. Soccer games
  45. FCA
  46. DQ
  47. Car wash
  48. Driving around
  49. Huck’s Parking Lot
  50. Basketball courts by city pool
  51. Football Games
  52. Sporting Events
  53. Football games
  54. Sporting Events
  55. At home
  56. Doing homework
  57. Bus stops
  58. With friends
  59. At the mall
  60. At home
  61. Park district events
  62. Surrounding communities and neighborhoods
  63. Park down by the river
  64. Family events
  65. Sporting practices
  66. Band practice
  67. Choir practice
  68. Allerton Park
  69. Community pool
  70. Movies
  71. Mall
  72. Disc Golfing
  73. Shopping
  74. Competitive sports / leagues
  75. Streets
  76. Skate Park
  77. Roller Rink
  78. Other churches
  79. At home
  80. Eating
  81. Play Practice
  82. Concerts
  83. Events
  84. With boyfriends and girlfriends
  85. YMCA
  86. Athletic or academic clubs
  87. Rec Centers
  88. Doing homework
  89. Driving around
  90. Sitting and waiting at siblings events


How can you effectively go to where they are?

  1. Home visits
  2. Attend band concerts
  3. Attend choir concerts
  4. Go to concerts
  5. Schedule a youth hang out night – students pick, youth leaders come.
  6. Play a game before giving them something for free.
  7. Meet them for lunch
  8. Show up with free food
  9. Take snacks to practices
  10. Give away sodas after school
  11. Go to parent’s house for dinner
  12. Meet after games for pizza, etc.
  13. Go for a walk
  14. Take a basketball to the park
  15. Volunteer to help coach a team
  16. Free Meals
  17. Show up
  18. Set up a game night
  19. Take youth to various fast food joints to see who has the best french fries
  20. Have a gaming event at church
  21. Show a movie at the park
  22. Go as a youth group somewhere to connect with students
  23. Volunteer at school
  24. Go to school programs
  25. Substitute teach
  26. Invite kids to go with you places
  27. Attend school programs
  28. Cruise the square
  29. Organize a group concert
  30. Take students shopping at Christmas
  31. Free car wash or give quarters
  32. Show up and cheer them on
  33. Follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram
  34. Take church bus to attend sporting events
  35. Take food / drinks to hand out at games or as they exit school
  36. Volunteer at sporting event concession stand
  37. Cheer them on at games
  38. Do a drawing at school or park or McD’s parking lot at a certain time
  39. Get a game schedule
  40. Coach a team
  41. Hold a tourney in the park
  42. Visit them at work
  43. Take a walk around the square or other parts of town
  44. Text them
  45. Bring snacks to where they are
  46. Prepare a pre-game meal
  47. Go with your own kids to watch a game
  48. Popcorn party after games
  49. 5th Quarter
  50. Join  a group to play a sport once a week
  51. Intergenerational camping trip
  52. Attend soccer games
  53. Set up some intentional times to meet with students in areas not at church
  54. Volunteer to tutor
  55. Volunteer at the library
  56. Volunteer in custodial
  57. Meet in Food Court
  58. Connect on video games
  59. Play music or sports with them
  60. Contact them and just talk / listen
  61. Visit their work place
  62. Take a group out for pizza
  63. Be a regular at a coffee shop or other youth hangout
  64. Go shopping
  65. Text them
  66. Meet them on Social Media
  67. Church van pick up from school
  68. Invite them to your home
  69. Host a party
  70. Ask parents to help drive kids places



  1. When you break it down, there are really just four or five main places where students are.  It’s more managable to meet them on their turf than we may realize [sports games and practices, school, home, work, eating establishments, recreation]
  2. In another sense, it’s overwhelming to think of individually connecting with kids or groups or students, which is why a team approach is so important. Always take another adult or two so you can model “going to where kids are”.
  3. Students basically hang out and do what they see adults doing.
  4. Incarnational student ministry is more of a lifestyle than a job.  It requires that we have a heart for building bridges with students for the purpose of helping them get a glimpse of the Gospel.
  5. Hanging out with teenagers doesn’t mean you need to act like a teenager. It just means you need to become comfortable with teenagers acting like teenagers.
  6. Always use wisdom to be above reproach, when it comes to adult / teen relationships.  Always in public, never just you and the student, and all the other standards that are in place for both safety and perceptions of a solid student ministry.