I like to think I’m in the know on current culture and youth trends. So I am always amused at myself when I’m not quite as current as I want to be.
On the high school retreat I spoke at in November, I was learning new language and a new app.
Some of the girls introduced me to GroupMe [iTunes Store or Google Play]. I am not one to want to add another app, another distraction, another form of contact to keep up with to my phone. But I will admit, I was slightly intrigued at the GroupMe concept.
Basically, you invite anyone you want to a group list. These girls have so many lists of group chats (this friend group, that friend group, church friends, non church friends, small group). There is definitely danger in all these groups. Which list did I post in? Is someone in the group chat I don’t want seeing this message?
These girls decided to add me to their small group chat, and I have been delighted at what I found.
To be honest, I didn’t quite get it at first. I was being silly, said hi, and kept moving.
The day I left the retreat, I was telling another leader about GroupMe and got back into the app to review the premise. And I saw a post from these girls’ weekly small group leader.
When they first added me, I had no idea the small group leader was even a part of the group. And to my delight, just hours after this small group of girls had returned from the retreat, the small group leader had posted, “Welcome Back. I can’t wait to hear about it. What was your favorite part?”
The small group leader had engaged these girls. She had an “in” to hear about the retreat. The retreat wasn’t forgotten in her mind. And while I so wished this small group leader had been on the retreat to go deep with her few, she re-engaged the dialogue as quickly as possible. The retreat wasn’t lost on her as the small group leader.
And while I am on a continuous learning curve with teens and social media and smart phones, I have to say for the purpose of student/leader relationships and technology, I am a fan of GroupMe. Even if Adam wrote about it all the way back in 2011.
Props to this small group leader for being current, relevant, and engaging the conversation on a daily basis.