Dec 01 2015
Training: Do’s and Dont’s
What are some good guidelines to remember when teaching cross-culturally? One trainer shares his experience:
- Do teach with Salt flavor. SALT training differs from other leadership training in both the content and teaching methods. The trainees are also trainers and we must remind the students that they are learning how to teach the same course in their ministry.
- Do review constantly and review constantly. All learning happens through repetition. To have confident students, they must review in different ways until the material is comfortable. When it is comfortable, the excitement to teach others will increase.
- Do identify with the trainees in all aspects of their ministry. We need to learn from the Incarnated Savior to feel the burdens and struggles of our trainees. By understanding their needs and connecting with them, we become better teachers for them. When we are not teaching, we need to be listening.
- Do respect the local culture. Frequently, SALT trainers live in a different environment from our trainees. We must understand this difference with respect and a learning posture. Those we train are mature Christian leaders and have better experience in applying Biblical principles within their culture.
- Do prepare for the unexpected. Variables such as security concerns, health problems, and transportation delays can impact the training schedule. We trust the Almighty God who sends us and strive to have flexibility to meet the challenges.
- Don’t teach anything beyond what the Bible says. This is particularly important when teaching application. We must focus on Biblical principles and never criticize the government or other religions.
- Don’t be biased by one’s own faith tradition. We serve believers from a wide faith spectrum. We should teach from a balanced viewpoint. Our teaching should cover different schools of thought within the evangelical church. As long as we stay within the plain teaching of Scripture we can be assured that we are not dividing the church.
- Don’t create barriers in training. Avoid using million-dollar-words and original languages of the Bible. Make your teaching easy to understand by trainees of a low educational background.
- Don’t give direct answers when being consulted on life situation questions. We should focus on simply giving sound Biblical principles and then ask the trainees to make their own decisions. A direct answer might lead to unexpected confrontation with the local church or among the trainees.
- Don’t give any reason for gossip. For example, a trainer should never be in a room alone with a trainee of the opposite sex. This measure protects the trainer, the trainee, and the ministry.