Understanding the Adventurer-Age Children
HOW THEY BEHAVE
1. They enjoy strenuous activity
2. They love to create
3. They possess active imaginations and a growing ability to memorize
4. They have variable attention spans
5. They delight in stories
6. They are readily disciplined
7. They crave experiences that satisfy

WHY THEY BEHAVE THAT WAY
At this age, growth slows. Anything involving activity will capture their interest. Large assignments discourage them. If there is room to run, they won’t walk. They work hard and play hard, but their energy is not limitless. They often overdo it and become exhausted and cranky. They like work that they can turn into play.
They enjoy putting things together and making useful stuff. Because their muscular coordination is still developing, they need practice with their smaller muscles. They think it is fun to convey an idea or feeling by drawing a picture or telling a story. They don’t have patience for details.
They are developing increasing sensory perception. They are more aware of details. They find it easier to visualize objects that are not present. They find it easier to imagine what could happen in a certain situation. They are able to put themselves in someone else’s shoes.
Memorization comes easily.
Their average attention span is one or two minutes, with their attention shifting rapidly from place to place. However, when they are interested in a specific activity, they may stick with it for ten minutes to an hour.
They are attracted to stories with a satisfying plot. Boys find outdoor activities and wild animal stories especially appealing. Girls like stories about children and family experiences.
Girls also enjoy stories that employ conversation and repetition.
Experts say this may be the best age for cooperation with adults – when conditions are favorable. They need to feel they have some freedom of choice. When basic needs are not met, they revolt. They are confused by inconsistency.
They are frustrated when they are not able to carry out a natural tendency, for example, the need to move after sitting for too long. They are irritated by failure in any project. They desperately seek approval from people they respect. They resent interference when they are involved in something interesting.
HOW TO HANDLE THEM

Provide plenty of opportunity for physical activity. Be patient when they run instead of walking. Be sure that pre-session activities involve lots of action, such as sand table projects or performances of Bible stories. Get them involved in arranging the chairs and passing out materials. Include activity within the regular Adventurer program.
It is difficult for Adventurers to use their small muscles for a long period. The best projects are easy for them and can be finished quickly. Don’t ask them to provide details. The Awards should be able to be completed in two or three sessions. Don’t make the requirements so impossible that they lose interest and heart! They enjoy paper projects and modeling clay.
Make your stories vivid with details that will stimulate their imaginations and help them internalize sights or sound. Mention the swish of the fishing nets, the type of sling-shot, the color of clothing.
They need at least three different changes in activity during club time: Bible stories, discussion, physical activity, suggested action, worship, learning. They are unable to give sustained concentration to non-action tasks.
Keep the story moving. Don’t let the action get bogged down by non-essential details. Try to make the people and their situation real to the children. Be sure to include conversation.
Whenever possible, let them choose an activity. Make it obvious that you like them and respect their ideas. Provide plenty of personal attention. Supply “jobs” that will interest them and make them feel important. Try to reward good behavior rather than punish wrong behavior. Never strike a child, or belittle them for their inappropriate behavior. Take them away from the group for private counseling.
Allow them to complete projects they are eager to do. Always keep in mind their physical needs. Be lavish in your approval for actions, answers, or work. Simplify your requirements so every child in the class can succeed. Provide opportunities to earn rewards for good work.

 

HOW TO TEACH THEM
Show them how to use their energy for God. Teach them to help others. Suggest simple tasks they can complete, such as inviting friends to Adventurer club and Sabbath School, or mailing get well cards. Their projects should have a purpose and be of some practical use.
They want to make objects they can keep or give as gifts. The activities should be associated with the program goals.
Present stories in such a way that the Adventurers are able to put themselves in the place of the character. Ask them to imagine what they would do in that situation. Their imaginations are useful in helping them work out such problems. Although memory work is important and relatively easy at this age, encourage children to think through ideas. They need to understand what they memorize.

 

Give your programs variety: tell stories, use visual aids, ask questions. Use action verbs in your story-telling. Make sure the activities also teach something. Provide opportunities for movement by letting them stand to answer questions etc.
Make abstract ideas understandable through the use of stories. Bring Bible and story characters to life so the children will follow their right example. Relate truth to their everyday life by making it personal. They are able to accept ideas, but need help in applying them to their own lives and actions. Share your own faith journey with them. Teach God’s plan of salvation and help the Adventurers feel confident in God’s love. Explain the reasons behind the rules for behavior or the use of project materials – and the reasons behind God’s rules found in the Bible.
Teach the children that God is pleased by their trust in Him and their obedience. Instill in them a desire to choose His way in all areas of their lives. Above all, help them to learn to love God, as their Personal Saviour.

This is taken from pages 8 – 10 of the printed manual.