As a teacher, you want to work smarter, not harder. Savvy teachers know to occasionally break their group members down into smaller groups during a Bible study. These are known as Buzz Groups. They get people talking, and the “buzz” in the room goes up.
There are lots of great reasons to do this (and you probably don’t want to do this every time your group gathers for Bible study). Here are the top 3 reasons it’s smart to divide your group during Bible study:
- People will talk more. Haven’t you seen it? A large group of people just sitting there, waiting for you to say something brilliant and engaging? You throw out a question to them, and they sit there. Dead silence. Nervous stares. Heads bow down, hoping you won’t pick them to answer the question. When you break a larger group down into small groups of 3-4 people, it’s not intimidating to speak up any longer. Conversations take off, questions asked by the teacher can be freely discussed, and participation and engagement goes through the roof.
- Relationships can be established or strengthened. It is entirely possible to sit across the circle or on the other side of the isle from people you see weekly, but don’t really know. Breaking people into smaller groups helps them get to know one another. Randomly pairing people up can help relationships germinate.
- The group leader can “float.” Group leaders need to understand how and what their people think, and if you break your group into smaller ones, it’s easy to pick one of the groups to join. Listen to how your people answer questions. Watch for emerging leaders to rise up. Keep your ears open for any misunderstandings about doctrine that need to be corrected. Then float to a different group for a few minutes. Floating from group-to-group gives you, the group leader, a great way to interact with your members in ways you can’t if you’re always leading the group from the front of the room.