Before we ever talk about training time, we always emphasize one basic principle – We need to teach people and not just teach a lesson. That means the most important thing when teaching is to focus on how best to challenge and change people’s hearts and minds. The amount of time that will take is not always easy to predict. Practically speaking, though, it is helpful to have some guidelines for planning a training:
- Individual lessons – In most cases, each lesson take approximately 1 to 1½ hours. It is not recommended to split one lesson into two lessons, or even to put a lunch or snack break in the middle of a lesson. Each lesson moves from introducing an idea, to presenting new information on that idea, and then seeing how to apply the new information. Trying to split a lesson creates an awkward break in the middle of this process. As much as possible, each lesson should be taught as a whole.
- Church Training Modules – Modules 1-3 and 8-10 are usually scheduled for 3 days each. Modules 4-7 are longer. They can each be done in 4 days, or split into two separate 2-day trainings.
- Facilitator Development Modules – Although we most often schedule 3 days, the modules themselves vary significantly in amount of content. To some extent you can mix and match modules based on the needs of the group. Two shorter modules are sometimes combined together, while longer modules are often split into two parts. Besides just teaching modules, Facilitator Development trainings should also include plenty of time to share testimonies and pray for one another.