Do you homeschool? Do you try to do educational activities with your children in the summer? Do you have pre-schoolers? Have you ever tried to combine Bible lessons and secular subjects into one lesson? It’s easier than you think.
Today we went out to work with some immigrant children in a poor area of our city. Many of these children are struggling in school. My time with them is limited, so I wanted to connect the things they need to practice for school with a Bible lesson.
The result? We explored Noah and the Ark while integrating the Bible lesson with various school subjects. What did Noah need to build the Ark? Gopher wood, but how much? Math was easily reviewed as we discussed the size of the Ark and concepts of measurement like inches, feet, yards and cubits. We discovered how important it is to have standard measurements.
The one unfortunate thing about how the books of the Bible are ordered is that the chronology gets very confusing. You read a story about King David and then a couple of books later you get a similar story. The prophets are even more confusing, as they are all lumped at the end. It makes it very difficult to figure out where they all fit into the previous narrative books. Although not quite as confusing, the New Testament has some of the same issues with stories being repeated and trying to figure out where the epistles fit into the history written in the book of Acts.
Chronological Bibles help, but what happens when you try to connect the rest of World History to what is happening in the Bible? Honestly, I think most Bible teachers and parents don’t even try. I can’t say I blame them. Who has the time to sort it all out and then try and teach it?
Have you ever heard someone “quote” the Bible and realized they were actually quoting Benjamin Franklin or some other more modern person? Evidently, it happens often. Even adults often have trouble distinguishing between a “proverb” from Benjamin Franklin or even an actor or politician and an actual “Proverb” from the book in the Bible.
Those who believe in the concept of “all wisdom is equal” would say there isn’t a problem with that. Since they are all proverbs, they should agree. The problem is that often popular proverbs are in direct conflict with scripture. Even those which aren’t, can be misused to confuse someone about how they should and should not make decisions.
School children automatically hate to memorize almost anything. Put it to music though, and it is amazing what they can recall. For years Bible class teachers have taught even the youngest of children the books of the New Testament by song. In fact you can still hear adults hum it as they look for a passage. It seems though that most of us stop there.
Did you know many of the songs we sing in church are actually scripture songs? Not only that, but Christian book stores carry cd’s with scripture songs. Many stores even have a way for you to listen to the music before buying to make sure it has tunes your children will enjoy.
This summer the children in our Church are having a blast creating their own Bible Museum. For thirty minutes every Wednesday night, they are divided into groups of three or four children. We give each group a Bible and place the world’s largest stack of donated and yard sale “building” blocks, tiny plastic animals, fabric and tiny figurines in front of them.
Their mission is to take the Bible story assigned to them and make it come to life. They are told to refer back constantly to the Bible to make sure their re-creation is as accurate as possible. As you can see from some of these pictures, their creativity is amazing!