Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Bible Book/Reading Lesson for Kids Part 1

I shared in my seminar parts of a lesson I delivered with kids.   I thought I should write it down here so that others could adapt and replicate it with their own children or in a teaching session. I was surprised that in all my online searches, I could not find lessons using strategies that reading teachers implement combined with the Word of God. 

 Bible Features Lesson

Objective: To engage your children in thinking about the Bible as a book (with many types and helps in different Bibles), and guide students to discover what features their Bibles have and what types of Bibles exist, how those features help them understand the Bible, and to decide which Bible features and types that they personally like.

Hook/Anticipatory Set:  a KWL chart
Ask students what they KNOW about the Bible and make a list.   Then ask students what they want to KNOW about the Bible.  (at the end of the lesson, ask students what they learned TODAY about the Bible)

List these answers on a whiteboard or on chart paper.  (if this lesson is revisited another day or week, start to seek answers to what they want to know about the Bible and share at the start of subsequent lessons).

Some hints to help generate the lists:
Know: the Bible has 66 books, 39 Old Testament, 27 New Testamant, many authors, many translations, many languages, is the most read book worldwide, is a guide for daily living, is a living active book, sharper than any 2 edge sword...

Want to know: anything goes-- but you can prompt with -- what is the longest book of the Bible, what is the shortest verse, my kids asked about how many women were in the Bible, how many wars, etc...

LOOK Input/Modeling:  Show some children's Bibles. Tag features in them and talk about them.  The first time we did this in a group setting, we used 15 copies of the same Bible so that we could ALL see the same features. If you have a document camera, you could show any Bible that is large enough, or preselect Bibles that all have at least one feature in common (like a concordance or topical list).  After your kids understand what a feature is (like a caption, vocabulary word, cross reference, footnote), put them in small groups and give them some post it notes, to list ALL the features they can find in a collection of Bibles.  (In a Sunday School Setting this was a second lesson the next week with all the kids bringing a Bible or two from home). 

Hint: line up your kids by age-- by birthdays- and then pull an oldest student and pair with a youngest student to make the small groups so readers/writers of all levels end up in mixed groups! 

Post the notes on the wall, and talk about all the different features found-- then ask your small groups to decide which features are most IMPORTANT, FUN, HELPFUL to them.  (We want our kids to not just know features exist, but to push their thinking to critical thinking (analyze, synthesize, evaluate) where real memory and application is accessed.) 

BOOK:  Talk about a scripture about how believers are to use the Bible in a meaningful way.  Colossians 3:16 or Hebrews 4:12 or Psalm 119 would be great places to start.  Even assign or select a verse to memorize this week!

TOOK:   Assign homework-- ask your parents, teachers and friends- what Bible features they like to use and why!   Fill in your KWL chart with what I learned or was reminded of  today about God's Word!

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