Activity Ideas for The Friend of Little Children – Jesus Storybook Bible

In our 3-6 children’s church class, we have been working through The Jesus Storybook Bible and I’m always looking for activity ideas for them. Today I have partnered with a group of bloggers to bring you some activity ideas for The Friend of Little Children as a part of a huge blog hop of sorts.

We are building a list of activity ideas for EACH story/account in The Jesus Storybook Bible. I signed up for The Friend of Little children. You can see them all linked up on the main page over at My Mundane and Miraculous Life.

Activity Ideas for The Friend of Little Children from The Storybook Bible | Vicki-Arnold.com

Activity Ideas for The Friend of Little Children

There are a few different themes you can explore with this story:

  • Friendship – As Christians, we are blessed to be friends of Jesus. You can explore the theme of friendship with your little ones by talking about what being a good friend is, role playing out different friend situations (when someone has a toy you want, for example), or make a gift for their friends.
  • Service – Exploring service with preschoolers is a great time for role playing. One possible activity is to wash each other’s feet. You wash your child’s and then have them wash yours. Or serve each other tea and cookies at a tea party.
  • Priorities – A good one if you have older students that you would like to include. Talk about what is important to us and compare it to what is important to God. Maybe make a picture graph for little ones with magazine cut-outs and have older students make a chart or list.

Our Activity for The Friend of Little Children

We chose to focus on friendship for our activity. After we read the story, we talked about how great it is to be a friend of God. Then we talked about our friends. The 3-year-old counted off his friends (most made the list more than once…).

Then we decided to make a gift for a friend. We decided to color a picture for his friend Jeremiah. Oliver is all about dinosaurs right now and my friend Annette over at In All You Do has several dinosaur printables that we just love.

I printed out the coloring pages and let Oliver pick one for Jeremiah. We talked about which one he thought Jeremiah would like and what colors he would like on it. He chose an orange cat. 😉

Dinosaur coloring pages from In All You Do

Then Oliver picked one of his Dragon Legends cards (purchased at the Creation Museum) especially for Jeremiah. He changed his mind after I took the photo so he ended up giving him the sparkly purple one.

Dinosaur coloring pages and dragon legend cards

Then we packaged it up in an envelope, which he also decorated, and hand delivered it to Jeremiah. It was adorable.

I’ve said it many times before, crafting and doing activities with kids does not have to be a complicated affair. They enjoy the time with you and will pick up much more than you could ever actually teach. They’re funny like that, little sponges.

I hope you enjoyed the activity ideas for The Friend of Little Children from The Jesus Storybook Bible. Be sure to check out all the other activities over at My Mundane and Miraculous Life!

Teaching a Biblical Worldview

Teaching a Biblical Worldview | Vicki-Arnold.com

Everyone has a worldview. It is the perspective from which we view, process, and analyze our life experiences. It is a culmination of what we’ve been taught and what we’ve experienced. There is no avoiding having a worldview. It’s like a brain, everyone’s got one. It’s how we each use it that varies.

The way I see it, we have two options. We can choose to look at the world and make decisions about right or wrong, how we treat others, etc. based on our own feelings and experiences alone. Or we can look at it through the lens of what God has to say in the Bible.

I am striving for the latter. I am also attempting to guide my children in this way. By the infinite grace of God, it seems to be working bit by bit. Change is hard, yo.

Obviously, I am still in the process of raising my children so I can’t give you a bullet-point list of sure-fire ways to raise kids with a biblical worldview. However, I don’t think I will be able to do that even when my kids are grown, so there’s that.

What I can do is tell you why having a biblical worldview is important and share the resources I’m using to prayerfully achieve that goal.

Why is a Biblical Worldview Important?

If you aren’t a Christian, having a biblical worldview isn’t going to be important to you. If you ARE a Christian, it should be very important. As a Christian, you are professing to be a follower of Jesus Christ. You are a representative of Him to everyone you meet. How you respond to situations, how you treat others, how you live your life will have an impact on how others view Him.

That’s a lot of pressure, isn’t it?! Thankfully, it isn’t really about us, it is about the grace of God. Our lives can either be a hinderance or a help to His work. I’d rather be a help.

Now, if we are professing to be Christians, don’t you think we should actually know what directives He left us? Shouldn’t we know how He expects us to represent Him? We are only going to know this by reading His words. It is important to read, meditate on, and desire to live out.

But, what about worldview? Why does it matter if our worldview is biblical?

It boils down simply. Is God right or is man? If it is man, then which one? Aside from Jesus, can you name a perfect human being? I can’t.

Biblical worldview = God is right, He is Truth. Man’s worldview = a matter of opinion, truth is relative. Which of these seems more stable? Which one is a reflection of Christ?

Tools to Teach a Biblical Worldview

If you have made the decision that you want a biblical worldview, here are a few resources I am using or planning to use, along with the reasoning behind them. My goal is that these will be a good foundation of training for both our kids and myself to look to the Bible for answers in easy and tough situations.

  • What We Believe series – We have started with Volume 1 – Who Is God? this year. The series is aimed to build a foundation of a biblical worldview for kids aged 6-14. We are using the corresponding Notebook and Jr. Notebook as well. The book is written in an conversational tone and my kids have found the stories used to illustrate key points to be funny, which keeps them engaged. We have enjoyed going through this and it has presented us with many opportunities to discuss our faith and why we believe what we believe.
  • Child Training Bible – I’ll admit, I haven’t used this one as well as I should. It isn’t intuitive to me to bring out the Bible when correcting the kids. However, 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” The Child Training Bible is a great tool for this, you can read my full review for more information.
  • Virtue Training Bible – This is the other side of the coin, the Child Training Bible addresses behavior that needs correction. The Virtue Training Bible is focused on the behavior we should be attempting to live (through the strength of the Holy Spirit, not our own).

Beyond these three resources, we are utilizing curricula that connects this world with it’s Creator. Our science books start from the position that God is Creator and then explores his wonderful creation from there. Our history weaves both “biblical” history and “secular” history, connecting them together in the time line of the world. You know, like they happened.

Do you have any tools that you use or have seen for teaching a biblical worldview to kids? I’d love for you to share them in the comments!

Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness {a review}

the Vicki Arnold blog uses affiliate links, please see our disclosure for more information.

Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness (a review)

About Kids in the Word

Kids in the Word is a new site for Amanda Pelser’s long-running blog series titled, wait for it…Kids in the Word. Amanda has a passion for helping other mothers disciple their children in the ways of the Lord. She is a fellow Teach Them Diligently blogger.

Above all, she is a mom who wants to see her children love the Lord their God with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength. She has created an ebooklet to help you take the first steps in this called Teaching Children to Have a Devotional Time, which is available to subscribers (like me!).

About Be Thankful

Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness is the first ebook Bible Study from Kids in the Word. The first section covers what is thanks, why should we give thanks to God, and how we should give thanks to God. The next section covers the “for what” question and includes studies on God’s character, His steadfast love, and more.

Finally, the appendix is FULL of journaling pages for your students to create their own gratitude journal. Seriously, like over 200 pages of journal pages for you to choose from. There are also printable cards for Bible verses to memorize, currently the King James Version is the only version available.

Create a gratitude journal with your kids. Choose from over 200 pages in Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness by Amanda Pelser

My Review of Be Thankful

I love this ebook. My kids are enjoying creating their gratitude journals and I’m enjoying learning what they are thankful for. Actually, that is proving to be rather entertaining, my kids are thankful for some pretty interesting, random things. I love it.

There is no time frame set up for this ebook, you can take as long as you want or you can use it as a quick study and then just utilize the journaling pages to keep the daily focus on being thankful. And, really, isn’t that what we should be focusing on this time of the year?

I personally love that the verses are in the King James Version, we use this version almost exclusively in our home. I am always amazed at how my kids reading improves when they start reading aloud with us from the KJV. But that’s beside the point here, I guess.

Amanda has done a great job of doing the research legwork for you. She walks you through how to use the ebook, then walks you through each step of the what, why, and how of thankfulness according to the word of God.

About the journaling pages. Don’t let the huge number scare you off, she has given multiple options for each page. You won’t actually have a 200 page journal when you are finished, unless you duplicate some pages. The options are for pre-writers through fluent writers. This I really like.

I like how she categorized the things we have to be thankful for to get us started. I also appreciate that it is filled with references to the word of God.

Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness by Amanda Pelser (a review)

Giveaway!

You can purchase Be Thankful: Cultivating Year-Round Thankfulness for $7.99 at any time. If you would like a chance to win it for free, then follow the instructions in the Giveaway Tools widget. Giveaway ends November 4, 2013 at 11:59 EST.

Books of the Bible Memory Cards: Old Testament {free printable}

Books of the Bible memory cards - Old Testament

Last month I shared a New Testament books of the Bible printable for helping kids memorize the books of the Bible. And as I promised, today I have the Old Testament cards. I still have another companion printable for these coming next month (sign up to get blog posts in your email to make sure you don’t miss that).

The “answer key” for this set of cards is actually on two because the Old Testament has all those long named books like Jeremiah and Ecclesiastes.

You are free to use these for your own personal use and tell anyone and everyone about them, I just ask that you give them the link to this post and not the direct link to the PDF.

Download your free books of the Bible memory cards for the Old Testament.

Important! I missed Numbers on the first page. I have now updated the PDF to include it on the last page. The answer key is correct, I just missed including it in the cards. My apologies!

Cards for Memorizing the Books of the Bible – New Testament {free printable}

Books of the Bible memory cards - New Testament

My kids have been trying to memorize the books of the Bible. I decided to create some cards to print out so they can make a game of it. Then I thought, “Hey! Other people might be interested in this!” and now here we are.

I rock at intros, don’t I? (Do I tell you I just snorted there or not?) (Apparently I do…)

Aaaand moving on to what you are really interested in…the free printable!

You are free to use these for your own personal use and tell anyone and everyone about them, I just ask that you give them the link to this post and not the direct link to the PDF.

These are for the New Testament and I have included a couple extras like a “solution” card, The Gospels, and Paul’s Epistles so they can go beyond simply memorizing them in order. I will share the Old Testament another time (subscribe via email if you don’t want to miss them). I also have another free printable in the works to go with this…

Preview of printable cards for memorizing the books of the Bible (New Testament)

Download the cards here.

The Importance of Discipleship

I'm partnering with the Teach Them Diligently bloggers again to bring you The Importance of Discipleship

“disciple – a person who is a pupil or an adherent of the doctrines of another”

With homeschooling we are blessed with and challenged by the freedom to choose exactly who or what doctrines we adhere to. The question for the Christian homeschool family then becomes, who is our homeschool a disciple of? Who or what are we following?

Are we  disciples of a homeschool philosophy?

Are we disciples of learning styles?

Are we disciples of curriculum?

Don’t get me wrong here. These things ARE good things and we would do well to study them. They are not the problem in and of themselves.

The problem comes when we know more about them than we know about God’s Word. When we study the philosophies and teachings of man more than the teachings of Christ. Or more simply, they become more important than reading the Bible, praying, or worship.

It really all comes down to this, doesn’t it? The constant checking of our life to see if we’re keeping our eyes on Jesus. That dying of self and putting Him first.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6:33”

And since I do not count myself an expert on your heart, this is where my words end and I simply encourage you to seek the will of the Father for your life and homeschool. Because sometimes change really is necessary.

I’m linking up with the Teach Them Diligently bloggers again this week.

Teach Them Diligently Homeschool Convention 2014

How Do We Know God is Really There? by Melissa Cain Travis {a review}

How Do We Know God is Really There? by Melissa Cain Travis :: a review from vicki-arnold.com

How Do We Know God is Really There?

How many of us have fielded this question from our kids? How many of us have even wondered it ourselves at one point or another? I am so thankful that God is bigger than our questions and is faithful to honor even the tiniest faith (mustard seeds, anyone?).

I am also thankful that He provides us with tools to answer these questions when they arrive. The best thing to do when your child asks questions, is to lead them to the Bible to see what God has to say about it. The Word of God is alive (John 1:1) and the more we learn to seek it, the more opportunity we have for His Words to change us.

Answering Children’s Questions About God

That said, there is definitely a place for books with pictures and words on a child’s level. Children often need a visual to help them grasp concepts. How Do We Know God is Really There? is a great tool for answering this very question for kids. I received a copy of this book to review with the other Mosaic Reviews bloggers.

The book is a storybook about a boy and his father. The two of them have a special routine where they share their days and then explore the night sky. One day the son is presented with the phrase that there is “no proof that God is real” from a friend. Naturally, the son asked his father the big question…”How do we know God is really there?”

The father in this story shares about Edwin Hubble and his discovery about the galaxies in our universe. The father then helps the son to understand how this man’s discovery helps prove there is a God. He leads his son through some questions to use logic to answer the boy’s questions. Ultimately, the boy ends the conversation feeling he has an answer for his friend…and himself.

My Thoughts on How Do We Know God is Really There?

This is a fun book for kids. The story is engaging, it is a relatively quick read. The illustrations are good. Most of all, I liked the explanation the author gave. The reasoning used was pretty straightforward and easy for a child to grasp.

The book retails for $16, which seems high for a picture book to me. I did find one thing odd. There is no author or illustrator information. They are credited, but there is no further information. I usually read those and often my kids do, too.

Pretty short and sweet today. You can find Apologia online, where you can check out their other products. You can also connect with them on Facebook.

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Child Training Bible {a review}

The Child Training Bible {a review} + a giveaway!

My Review of the Child Training Bible

I received the Child Training Bible chart set free. I purchased the rest of the supplies myself and received no other compensation. This review is my honest opinion because I’m not interested in being a liar. If I were, I could use the Child Training Bible to easily find verses to change that. I’m giving away a chart set, too. So keep reading!

The Child Training Bible was created by Mindy Dunn. She is the homeschooling mama to four who desired to “train her children in the way they should go”. Anyone who has a child knows that they come with many opportunities for training, add in a sibling or two and you can multiply those opportunities exponentially. When these situations present themselves, we have options in our reactions. Mindy decided that she wanted her reaction (and training) to be turning to the Word of God. Oh, how I wish that was my first reaction to every situation.

So What is the Child Training Bible?

The Child Training Bible is a tool for parents to disciple their children while correcting bad behavior by getting to the root of the problem…a selfish heart needing to be transformed by the grace of God. The front page is a color-coded key to finding just the right scripture for the problem at hand. Whether the problem is anger, lying, or laziness, Mindy has done the work for you and you can easily find a scripture for your child to think on.

For example, your children are arguing and you want it to stop NOW. You open the front page of your Bible, find that Quarreling verses are the blue tabs on the bottom row. You choose a verse (or go through all of them). You can read it to your children or have them read it out loud to you.

Inside cover and index of the Child Training Bible

After you do that, you take out another card. This card has the behaviors and verses on one side for easy reference (see below). There are three of these cards, they correspond with the three sides you will have tabs on. (If you are confused about the tabs, keep reading I’ll get to them.)

An example of the verses for the Child Training Bible

On the other side of the cards are questions to ask your children about their behavior, questions to help them think about how the Bible applies to the situation, and scripture based prayers to pray with your children.

Questions and sample prayers on the back to help you along.

How Do You Set up the Child Training Bible?

The hard part has been done for you, the verses have been found and organized by behavior. You have to get a Bible that will fit the 8.75″ by 5.75″ index/cover card. You also need to buy the matching tabs and highlighters. The Sharpie Accent highlighters may seem a little on the pricey side, but they are pretty dang awesome and you will have leftover tabs. You can purchase your supplies on Amazon via the CBT’s supply page and you will help support the ministry by using their affiliate links in the widgets (doesn’t cost anything extra).

I purchased my Bible at Family Christian Stores because at the time, I could not figure out dimensions for a King James Version online. I bought this one:

The King James Version Bible I used for our Child Training Bible

Once you have your supplies you go through the Bible one section at a time, highlighting the verse, and putting a tab in the correct spot. The instruction card has clear instructions on this.

What Do You Think of the Child Training Bible?

I LOVE it! I love that the work of organizing the verses has been done. I love that it uses the word of God to correct behavior because that aligns with 2 Timothy 3:16, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” I feel $9 is a good price for these cards, they are worth their weight in gold, really.

Tabbing and highlighting the Bible was a tedious job, but so worth it to be able to grab and go when reproof is needed RIGHT NOW, as is often the case.

I intend to use this in our coming homeschool year as part of our character building curriculum. I happen to be putting one of those together. I am pretty dang excited about that, God has been connecting dots all over for me. 😀 He is so good. And yes, I will be sharing that later this fall. Make sure you sign up for my brand new newsletter so you don’t miss the announcement!


Facebook Giveaway!

Yes! Mindy has graciously agreed to give away a free Child Training Bible chart set to one blessed reader!

To enter the giveaway, you have to head on over to Facebook and click on the Only For Likers tab. Please note that the giveaway is not affiliated with Facebook in any way, it is simply being held there. The giveaway ends June 6, 2013.

Go enter the giveaway!

Where to find the Child Training Bible giveaway!

I’m adding this to the Hearts for Home Blog Hop at Upside Down Homeschooling. Be sure to check out the other blog posts shared!