While most churches I know let kids below 4 years old stay with parents in the sanctuary, ICA Bangkok has its own hub for Nursery (infants) and Discovery Junction (Toddlers or 2-3 year olds) at the 11th floor, next door to the sanctuary just in case the situation gets out of control and needs immediate parents’ attention.

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1. Adults can focus their attention better. Kids in the sanctuary can be distracting. This statement might be a little too honest for some, but it is true. While ICA Bangkok believes that worship time should be a whole- family experience, we also know that kids this age have very short attention span, heck, even adults do! Gladly adults are able to contain themselves and not:
A- distract their parents who are listen to the sermon or meditating by fidgeting or asking for a sweet!
B- distract the preacher by making squeals or throwing a tantrum while the main point is being driven!
C- Skip church ‘because of’ their kids. Yes, sadly for some, they blame the kids for not honouring the Sabbath day and keeping it holy as God has commanded us.
We do provide whole-family experiences like the once-a-month Communion Sunday. Kids of all ages get to share the big church for the first quarter of the service including Worship and Prayer time. We do have monthly Family Focus Ministry, too, that caters to the family as a whole with regards to fellowship, praise and worship and Christian living.

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2. Kids get to experience church on their level.
Ever asked yourself 'What is church to a 2-year-old?' Well, for Discovery Junction it is a whole lot of things!
1. It's making a mess and tidying away.
2. It's grabbing a toy or sharing it with someone random.
3. It's spilling a drink and cleaning it up with a tissue.
4. It's a trip to the bathroom and have a brief play with the soap and tissue.
5. It's listening to a Bible story and not finishing it.
6. It's sing along time with teachers and friends and shouting 'Jesus!!!'
7. It's snack time.
8. It's prayer time and learning to say 'Amen!' with a gesture.
Oh, the list could go on. Not to mention it's crying time when mum leaves them at the door and crying yet again when they remember that mum is not around just in time to see them at the door at pick up time. And just when they are about to move up to Preschool, it will be fun times with friends and a whole lot of other things.

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3. Kids get trained to independence for FREE!
Weaning is a big issue among mothers especially the Asian mother. Kids up to pre-teens share the same bed with their parents and the transition into adulthood can be a little tricky for some. The Asian culture has found its niche in this but here is an opportunity for kids to learn independence this early. Studies have shown that kids who are taught independence early on learn how to make wiser decisions early on. When they are left to fend for themselves, they learn to solve problems, socialize and develop character on their own and later on decide to accept Jesus in their hearts on their own. Sure, they will cry but kudos to the teachers and Kids Ministry volunteers, they will soon find joy in being with friends and teachers.

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There is wisdom in having toddlers church in a church. Having that venue where every member of the family can be optimized every Sunday is a win win situation. Parents can be fed fully at the sanctuary and kids can gain so much more than just church time in the toddlers church.

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