I sat down on Sunday afternoon and planned out seven weeks worth of Bible stories to do with the boys. I wanted to share my plan here, but I thought that first, someone might benefit from reading how we do “Bible Time.” If my ramblings are not beneficial after all, then please just skip to the next post!
The boys and I generally have our Bible time about three or four days a week right after lunch. I try to keep things simple and enjoyable as the boys eat their dessert and I share the Biblical narrative that comprises the stories of our faith. We focus on one story each week. I read it, and then we briefly discuss it. We are still at a point where childrens’ Bible story books work best for us. Our favorite resources are Arch Books from Concordia Publishing House and the Read and Learn Bible by the American Bible Society. The boys enjoy these as much as any other picture books, but we do make the distinction that these stories are from God’s Word and that God’s Word is true. Repetition of the same story for a week helps them to retain the narrative.
After the story, we work on memorizing a corresponding Bible verse. I write the verses on index cards, and we keep them handy on our kitchen table. Typically, I read the verse aloud and the boys take turns reciting it back between chocolate chips. (Jack is allergic to wheat so we just have the chocolate chips for dessert and dispense with the cookies.) By the end of the week, the boys have eaten quite a few chocolate chips and they have learned a new Bible verse.
We also pick a verse to review each day. Keeping the index cards on the kitchen table makes this pretty easy. I like to think of this as my “Suzuki Bible Verse Method.” A seasoned Suzuki violin student, Thomas knows about twenty songs now “by heart” and he can play these by memory at any time. In much the same way, the boys are learning many Bible verses “by heart,” and I hope in the future they will be able to recall them at any time.
In addition to all this, we are also starting a bit of work on Luther’s Small Catechism. We do this in much the same easy, conversational way. (This we usually do after we eat pancakes for supper on Thursday evening.)
Some weeks, of course, work better than others, and sometimes we take a break altogether. We do not, however, take a break from eating. When we do fall out of our routine, we have an easy way to get back on track: Oh, we just ate. Let’s have some Bible Time before we go on with our day.