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Helping Young Children Know the Word – Hf #299

on September 30, 2020 by Jami Balmet 1 comment

Helping our kids know God’s Word (and hopefully come to cherish it) is such an important task! But it can also be a very overwhelming task. In this episode, we will share some some great resources for helping our kids know God’s Word. Listen in!

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You can find the notes for this episode down below.

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Links & Resources:

Common Questions / Misconceptions

  • “I don’t have enough time!”— Consider repurposing regular times of the day when you’re already with your kids (mealtimes, playtimes, snack time, car rides, before nap or bedtime, walks, etc.)
  • “I don’t know what to teach them!”— When in doubt, just read small portions of scripture, talk about it in simple language, and pray. For more, you can add resources as referenced below.
  • “I don’t know enough!”— Learn together!
  • “It’s hard!” — Faithfulness is always challenging, but it’s worth the cost to invest eternal truths into the hearts of our children.

Reminders

  • There is no formula, every family will do it differently and that’s okay.
    Salvation belongs to the Lord. Even if we do everything right (spoiler: we won’t) that doesn’t guarantee our children will follow the Lord. Hope in him, not your methods. Pray for your children to have changed desires.

5 Ways to Help Your Children Know, Understand, and Apply the Word of God

  1. Through Inductive Study
  2. Through Scripture Memory
  3. By Teaching Doctrinal Truths
  4. By Teaching Vocabulary
  5. Through the Gospel Narrative

Inductive Study

  • Ages 7+: Once a child can read, train them to think through the passage using a tool like the Kid’s
    Inductive Study Card (free download) as they read on their own. Have them write or draw a
    picture of what they learned.
  • Ages 3+: Read a passage of scripture to your child, use a tool like the Kid’s Inductive Study Card (free download) to discuss, understand, and apply the text. Have them draw a picture of the story.
  • Ages 0+: Focus on listening to the word of God through an audio bible or an audio storybook
    bible. Talk about it for comprehension at their level.

Main idea: Help your children get used to hearing the word of God and thinking deeply about it. Don’t forget to pray!

Scripture Memory

  • Ages 3+: Focus on memorizing small or long passages of scripture together. Recite it daily or set
    it to a tune. For more passive memorization, listen to scripture songs:

  • For more incentive, offer a small treat or work scripture memory before your child moves onto a
    preferred activity.
  • Main idea: Implant the truth of God’s word in their heart so the Holy Spirit can bring it to mind.

Doctrinal Truths

  • Ages 3+: Work through catechisms (content amount appropriate for child’s age), having them
    memorize simple statements.

    • New City Catechism (book and app) — Some people also use: Westminster Shorter Catechism,
      Heidelberg Catechism
  • Ages 0+: Listen to doctrinal statements set to song.
  • Main idea: Teach your children simple statements that explain some of the hard-to-understand but foundational truths of the faith, so they can approach the bible with greater clarity.

Vocabulary

  • Ages 3+: Teach harder words as you run across them in the text and/or teach them words in a
    systematic way through flash cards or other methods.

  • Ages 0+: Focus on basic fluency. Expose them to the simplest words that they need to know (God,
    Jesus, Pray, Bible, Gospel…what great first words!).
  • Main idea: Your children might learn scripture or doctrine, but they need to know what all of
    those new/big words mean before they can understand and apply the truths.

Gospel Narrative

Final ideas // more resource ideas for these topics can be found here

Teach church history
Teach through missionary stories / biographies
Teach through hymns, old and new

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