Step 9

What Next?

Supporting the ongoing spiritual life of the school community.

Ending well

In our resource library, you’ll find that there are ‘at home’ versions of some of the prayer activities. You may like to give these to pupils who want to continue reflecting and praying at home. Some teams have even given away small packs of Post-it notes to anyone visiting the prayer space on the final day, and have encouraged them to go and create their own Prayer Wall at home somewhere. In one school, the team turned the final lunchtime into a celebration/story-telling session, where pupils swapped their favourite moments from the week as they shared their packed lunches.

Ending well is just as (or perhaps even more) important than starting well. Ending well determines how well you move on into what’s next.

What’s next?

Gather feedback

After saying a huge thank you to everyone who has been part of your prayer space team, ask them for some feedback. Send them a short set of questions via email, or get them back together the following week to swap feedback and stories together. For example:

  • What worked well?
  • What didn’t work so well? What could be improved next time?
  • What was your favourite prayer activity? Why?
  • What themes or behaviour caught your attention?
  • What was your favourite moment or conversation?
  • What did the pupils say about the prayer space?
  • What did the staff say about the prayer space?
  • What did the parents say about the prayer space?

Ask some of the school staff for feedback and observations too. Maybe send them the same email, but with just three or four questions.

Ask someone to check through all of the Post-it and torn-up cardboard prayers from the prayer activities and transcribe them into a Word document (this is a big, but fascinating, task) so that you can identify themes and pull out a few particular quotes.

Write a Report

Use all of the above to write a short summary report, including a couple of stories, the feedback from pupils and staff, the common themes from the pupil’s responses, as well as a few photos of the prayer space.

At the end of this report, make some recommendations:

  • How could any future prayer spaces be improved?
  • In what ways could the local church(es) continue to serve the school community?
  • Having seen the themes from the pupil’s responses, what further resources and services might be useful for the school?

In our experience, prayer spaces can open up all sorts of new ways for churches to serve the pastoral and spiritual life of their local school communities. Here are a few examples:

  • Further prayer spaces, timetabled or permanent
  • After-school provision
  • Lunchtime workshops
  • Chaplaincy projects
  • Kintsugi Hope groups
  • Self-identity courses, e.g. Made, Unrepeatable
  • Youth Alpha courses
  • Church volunteers serving as reading-buddies
  • Mentoring programmes
  • Input into RE lessons and assemblies
  • Prayer gardens
  • …and much more.

We hope and pray that your prayer space will open up new ways for you to serve your local school community. Please stay in touch and let us know how you get on.

Running Your Prayer Space

Need Help?

If you need any further help and advice with your prayer space, please in touch.

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