Last week I posted about using a Family Mission Statement to guide the teaching of the Word to our children.
Here is how we did this, in our family. We started with a statement: The Lafont family seeks to glorify God in all that we do, remembering that each thought, word and action is our offering to God. My husband and I wrote this. Maybe if our kids were older at the time, we would have gotten their input, but they were 3 and 5. This took some negotiating. What resulted was a compromise we could both support. We knew the LORD was at work in the process too.
Then, we made a list of important values that supported those statements. They were very simple:
- Above all, Love and Honor God
- Love Others
- Pursue and Demonstrate Excellence
- Practice Gratitude
We listed 3 supporting scriptures under each Value. I am posting about each scripture on Mondays. These verses were the very things we wanted our kids to know. We love all of the Word – but you have to start somewhere!
By applying the Word to the specific areas where we saw a need for growth, or where we had an important goal, we were addressing behavior problems, heart issues, and wrong thinking patterns that we had observed in our children (and in ourselves).
I stumbled onto this “method” out of necessity, but I am sure that many others have done something similar, some where, some time. As we all know, What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun (Ecc 1:9).
In order to track our progress, I made the checklists in the pic above. We used the flashcards to carry with us in my purse or to have out at the table for breakfast. At 3, Josh was not a reader yet, so I was really quizzing both of them together.
Initially, I did not expect Josh to learn Scripture very easily, since he could not read yet. My expectation was that he would pick up parts and get the general idea. I was amazed that he was able to memorize just as well as his older sister.
Younger minds are primed to learn language and memorize words – what a perfect time to plant the Word! For some difficult verses, I selected the wording from a “kid’s version” of the real Bible, the NIrv or I used the New Living Translation. These versions explain the Word to kids in language that they can understand because it is more like we talk in our everyday interactions.
I know some people disagree with using “simpler translations” like this, but I loved the result. It freed me from trying to paraphrase everything that I read to them while using the “real Bible”! And before that, we had Bible story books for them, but they needed to learn what the Bible had to say.
Then to mark the achievement of learning to read, each got his/her very own Adventure Bible For Early Readers, NIrV, with a little inscription on the inside from me. They loved getting a Bible of their own! It was a really big deal. They have spent hours reading it for fun. They always have it in church. This year, they each received an ESV Student Study Bible, because they are more mature readers.
Next Friday, I will share about the specific techniques I used to teach the kiddos! How about in your house – do your little ones have a Bible yet? What version of the Bible do you prefer for them? For you? Do you own more than one version? Please do share!
Britta ~ I am justAgirl…just like you!