The trick to teaching great Bible lessons for kids is to grab their attention in the beginning, present a clear lesson, and then make sure that they have some way of making the lesson applicable in their lives. While the teacher has to plan a good lesson, there are also ample resources for teaching the Bible to kids.
Teaching Bible Lessons for Kids
The most popular strategy for teaching the Bible to kids is generally referred to as hook, book, look and took. A good lesson will have all four components.
When you think of a hook, you probably think of something getting reeled in. That's exactly the image that you need to have when you're thinking of hooking your students. You want to reel them into the lesson and get them involved in the class, so it's important to think about what you're going to be teaching. Just about any activity you can come up with can be a good hook, but if you need some inspiration. . .
- A game that has to do with one of the main characters of your story
- A skit
- An object lesson
- A question that causes students to think
Obviously, if you're teaching a Bible lesson for kids, there has to be a point at which you present the portion of Scripture that you're studying or the story from the Bible. For younger children you may want to use a paraphrased version of the story only highlighting the key verse. However, for older children you can simply present the Scriptures as written. Don't feel as if you have to simply just read out loud--or have your students read out loud. There are many creative ways to present the Scriptures:
- Divide a shorter passage up and write the verses on note cards. Pass out the note cards and then ask the students to read them.
- Provide students with simple costumes and ask them to act out the passage.
- Tell the passage via pictures and symbols.
- Have the students take turns reading through the passage.
This is the part of the lesson where you tie it all together. This is your opportunity to show your students how this portion of Scripture might apply to them in their lives. There are several ways to make this portion of the lesson more interesting. Teaching the historical context of a specific passage is always helpful in understanding what is going on. Kids also enjoy knowing things like what people ate and wore in that time period. You should also make a point to have ample visual aids such as maps or a timeline. All of these things help put into context the passage and the story.
Took refers to the conclusion of the lesson. The best way to plan for this is to define what it is you want your students to learn from this lesson. Often times, this portion includes some type of craft and some type of Bible verse for kids to memorize. However, you can also end your lesson with a short object lesson or demonstration to illustrate your point. Regardless of how you conclude, remember that you want it to make a lasting impression.
Resources for Teaching Bible to Kids
There are many resources for teaching kids' Bible lessons. This is just a sampling of some of the best.
Christian Preschool Printables
Christian Preschool Printables is a fairly comprehensive site that offers a variety of worksheets and crafts. There is an e-mail list that you can sign up for, and the owner of the site also takes requests.
Children Learn to Pray and Worship
Creative Curriculum Resources offers a host of creative items for children's ministry including a curriculum on teaching children to pray and teaching children to worship.
Group's Children's Church Program
Kids Own Worship is a worship and children's church program for Sunday mornings. You can buy the whole kit to be ready to teach several ages of Sunday school.
Anyone who has been involved in children's ministry or has kids knows about Big Idea, which is now known as Veggie Tales.com. Veggie Tales offers a variety of children's ministry resources. Aside from ordering their videos, you can also purchase a variety of resources for children's ministry.
Ergemeier's Story Bible
Ergemeier's is one of the best Bibles on the market for simply telling the story of the Bible. It is presented in chronological order and tells Scripture in short stories. It is ideal for Bible lessons because not only does it have visual aids, but it also has questions in the back of the book for each story. The stories are told in a way that are kid friendly.