Dealing With Siblings In Class

It’s great when families attend church together. That’s one of our goals, right? We want to get families in church, don’t we? But sometimes it does not seem so great when siblings wind up in the same Sunday School class. If your class includes multiple grades, then you might find yourself dealing with this issue.

Just like anywhere, siblings can have issues in Sunday School. Problems such as rivalry, bickering, and even fighting can show itself during class. The best thing a teacher can do is to be on the lookout for these issues and consider ahead of time that there might be problems. Being prepared for these issues is a great way to lessen the impact these problems can have in class. Here are just a few of the problems you might encounter.


One of the biggest issues that siblings have when they are forced to do anything together is jealousy. You will be able to spot this pretty easily. Watch out for complaining when one gets something that the other did not get. Fighting over simple things like a seat is often another sign of jealousy. You can ease the jealousy by assuring both children that they will have what they need, and that no one is going to get something better than someone else.


Closely related to jealousy is competition. This usually manifests itself in older siblings. This can surface and become a problem especially if you like to incorporate games into your lessons. It might help to make sure the siblings are on the same team. This will cut down on the intensity of the competition if they are both working toward the same goal. You should also set a strict policy of what type of behavior will be tolerated and what will not. Just because they are siblings should not mean they do not need to follow the rules.

Airing Dirty Laundry

Another issue that might arise is siblings tattling on each other about things that have happened at home or at school in an effort to embarrass each other. The siblings are at a disadvantage with each other because they know more personal information. If a sibling starts trying to do this during class in order to embarrass the other, you will need to strictly enforce your rules concerning unkind behavior. This is very unkind, and will cause long lasting problems as the other children may begin to join in the criticism.

Having siblings in a Sunday School class is not always a bad thing. When you have siblings in your class you are getting twice as much of an opportunity to have an impact on that family. Keep in mind these tips, however, to minimize problems and keep your class a happy environment.

Sarah Reeves

You can see all of the articles by Sarah on Sunday School Zone.

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