For Bible stories and principles to become a permanent part of your child’s memory, they must be repeated many times over the course of many years. As a parent and teacher, I am always looking for new ways to make review a little more fun. Yesterday, we decided to use a game to review everything we had learned over the summer. My husband invented the original normal table sized version of this game and we took it up a notch by making it life-sized!
There are a few keys to making any review game successful. Fun of course is important, but your students need to really know the material well before playing. When we played this yesterday, the children who knew the material were very competitive and running like crazy. Visitors who had never been taught any of the information struggled a bit more.
To compensate for different knowledge levels, you can tweak the rules of any game. We had teams consisting of a mix of ages and knowledge levels so one team didn’t dominate the others. We also allowed children on the teams to take turns answering, so one child on each team didn’t dominate. I also threw in a few simple questions which went with our theme, but were very basic Bible knowledge (Ex. “Everything we have is from ____.)
If you are working with children who really know their Bible, make it super competitive. Make the questions harder, or give more points for answers to difficult questions. This particular game has a lot of random aspects to it, so it makes it even more fun. (Ex. The team that finishes first can still lose if they don’t have the most points.)
You can check our companion website Teach One Reach One (TeachOneReachOne.org) in the near future for all of the rules and game board tiles. You can easily make your own version though. I used the small poster board you can buy. As you can see, I am not an artist, so my tiles are low tech, but you could spend more time and make them fancy. (I saved these and will add more to each tile every time I use them. I am still trying to figure out a way to laminate them cheaply at some point.)
We used children as human game pieces. I just took four random hats from my house for each of the game pieces to wear. If you wanted to get really fancy, the game pieces could have complete costumes. I thought the game pieces would want to switch out and take turns answering questions, but they enjoyed being the game pieces.
I had two sets of questions – regular review questions for the material we had covered and “grab bag” questions which were random Bible knowledge questions. The beauty of this basic board is that you can change the questions every time it is played and make it an entirely new game without having to change your board tiles.
So have some fun and make a life sized Bible review game. You may be surprised how much your children actually enjoy reviewing their Bible knowledge.