One of the biggest struggles homeschooling families battle is which curriculum is best for their children. We become overwhelmed by the amount of curriculum available, struggle to find the right fit for each of our children, proceed to doubt each choice made for at least the first several weeks, and continue to search for new ways of teaching well after we’ve already begun our year.
To this end, we thought we’d spend the month of September launching discussions on all things curriculum.
I cannot begin to stress the importance of Bible time during our learning day. In fact, if you don’t start your learning day in God’s Word, may I be the first to recommend it. Acknowledging the Lord’s dominion over our time, our children’s education, and our homes is key.
That said, how do we go about encouraging our children to sit at the feet of God? Is there a particular book of the Bible we should start with? Must we read from the Bible itself? How do we keep our children engaged and make sure they understand what they are hearing?
Start Young – As early as possible, make a practice of sitting down daily with your babies and reading devotions with them. It could be as short as five minutes or as long as an hour. No matter the amount of time, make a point of opening the Bible and sharing with your children.
Include Worship – Do not dismiss the power of worship. Whether you start a CD, listen to the radio, or play your own instruments, take time to praise the Lord with your voices. Worship sets a gracious mood for your home.
Read From the Word – While we’ve used devotionals over the years, I would always recommend actually opening your Bibles and reading straight from the Word. Look up the Bible verse mentioned and show your children how to find the verse. Read it straight from the Bible itself. Start this practice young and help your children memorize where verses can be found.
Make It Hands-On – As often as possible, try to make Bible time hands-on. If there is an activity which will better help your children understand the story being told or concept being taught, go for it.
Oldies, But Goodies – It’s time to build on that earlier foundation. While younger children are content with Bible stories, older children ought to be ready for a little more ‘meat’. Encourage them to complete a Bible study or work through lessons in apologetics.
Memorization is Key – With each passing session, plan for your children to memorize Scripture. Start with simple, easy passages and build from there.
Start Here – If you’re not sure how to get started, may I humbly suggest reading through the gospel of John. If you’re looking for a great devotional, try your local Christian bookstore and ask to see their children’s selections. There are many to choose from!
Include Prayer Time – Don’t shy away from prayer time in your learning day. Allow your children to pray over their learning and your home. Encourage them to speak to God throughout their day and lay their requests before Him. Teach them how to pray. (Not using fancy words, but speaking from the heart. You could also teach them ACTS: acknowledge Him; confession of sin; thankfulness for all He provides; and supplication.) It doesn’t matter if they stumble over their words, pray for two seconds, or pray the same prayer each day; allow your children be a part of this important time and be in communication with God.
Starting our day off on the right foot should always include spending time in God’s Word and in prayer. We pray you make this a vital part of your day, choosing to put God before everything else. May He be given all glory, honor, and praise!
Time to Chime In: How many times have you read the entire Bible?