I get very excited planning for my daughter’s home school year. It’s the craziest thing, since I never expected myself to be in this place…planning, organizing, looking ahead, looking forward, hopeful, anticipating…doing school with her (!).
I’ve just begun to plan out her “Bible reading stuff.” Several have asked me to let them in on what we’ll be doing as we go forward so I thought I’d start sharing it. Today arrived a couple of new books that I’m pretty excited about, so of course I had to start taking photos! Is there any other option in this technological world now?
We already have a few items, are still looking for some missing items (if it’s not under her bed, where could that book be at?!), have others that I’m not sure we’ll use or not, and are pretty set on the others.
I’m not exactly sure how it will all look quite yet, what she’ll do independently and what we’ll do together, but so far what I am fairly certain about is having several layers for her “Bible study.”
Please note that my daughter is going into third grade; some of these ideas will be too much for your little! And one other thing: I have great vision and ideals and goals…that sometimes play out beautifully and sometimes they just don’t. I overwhelm my husband sometimes with all my plans and ideas. Please don’t feel intimidated if this sounds like too much. I would be so sad if you were.
First, she’ll have a daily Bible reading plan. Last year we used this one and it was very sufficient for this. I wanted her to get in the Word independently, I had a new baby (’nuff said), and it introduced her to an Bible reading plan that didn’t overwhelm or intimidate her.
This year, I’ll probably come up with a plan for her myself. So far, I’m leaning specifically towards incorporating Psalm 119 because it speaks of having such great delight for God’s Word. After it gets organized, I’ll share it!
Second, she’ll have a new “topic” for school: theology. In the past she has been pretty entranced by my own studying, so I thought, well why not just be specific about it and add this in?? These are the books that came today, and how exciting to think she can claim to have her own “theology books!” So cute. I’ll be looking through them more closely to see how quickly I want to take her through each one and in what order. This is a part that we may do during the day, or sometimes do later with dad. These books could very easily be done during family time, if that’s your style.
First, we’ll be reading the children’s version of Paul Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, entitled Dangerous Journey. There is a study guide for this book, which I’ve ordered, and I’ll look at that to see how it can be utilized for discussion.
Second, we’ll be reading through a systematic theology book for kids by Machowski, The Ology. It has extra Scriptures and a question or two for each topic. The ages he lists in this are primarily for 6-12. If you have younger kiddos, we just received this book when we dedicated our son at church and it would be a great “theology.”
Third, we’ll be reading through some of her children’s Bibles to keep in mind that “bigger story” in Scripture. We own The Jesus Storybook Bible, The Biggest Story, and God’s Big Picture Bible.
I think those will be sufficient for the year. But if not, we’ll likely dive in to Sally Michael’s God’s Promises. We did her God’s Names in the past and really, really liked it (I think she was about 5 or 6 at the time).
We have done Catechism in the past, and may or may not do some of that again. It’s nice to have a change of pace. If you have older kids and want a supplement to Catechism memorization, we worked through these workbooks last year. They were a little difficult for her in second grade, but they did help us have some good discussion.
Third, she’ll be doing actual Bible study. I’ve had a difficult time deciding which book of the Bible to go through with her, but in the end, I landed on Luke. I really wanted to go through a gospel/narrative with her, and since I found out our church is preaching through Luke this fall, I thought this was practically a no brainer. We’ll be studying passages a little ahead of the preaching schedule, and my hope is that by the time they tackle it on Sundays, she’ll get a little more out of it than she otherwise would (and so will I!).
I am going to type up some pages for her/both of us to fill out. They’ll be simple, there will likely be work for her to do independently, and opportunity for us to discuss together. The work load won’t be huge. Reading through the passage once or twice during the week, doing a day or two of a few questions, and then our discussion of it together. We’ll see how it all plays out. (sigh) I love thinking about this part and can’t wait to see how it turns out!
This step has only just begun, but I’ll post it, too, when I’m done. I plan for us to start studying Luke at the very beginning of August so that we’ll be sure to “be ready” for our church’s sermons! (Egads!)
Fourth, she’ll have some Scripture memory. This is where the curriculum that our church uses on Sundays comes in to play. The amazing Children’s Ministry staff at our church does a beautiful job teaching Biblical truths to the kids in their care. We’ll take a day to do any worksheet she brings home from Sunday School and do our best to memorize the Scripture they are working on. There have been times when we’ve done this well, and times when we haven’t. We definitely need to grow in our self-discipline in this area!
I hope this is helpful for some. If I have the opportunity and mind for it, perhaps I’ll post my motivation and desire for all of this. The purpose behind the doing – to see God and his glory – is really the beautiful motivation of it all. I hope it will be yours, too.
Much love to you!