When church leaders examine new resources, the question always comes up, “What curriculum piece am I supposed to use with my kids? Here are a few things you might want to know about Explore the Bible: Kids that will make your decision a little more informed.
Is Explore the Bible: Kids a broadly-graded resource? Yes! The four age groupings are intentionally broad to give you and the kids you lead the most options for meaningful study. The broadly graded approach addresses the range of skills in classes more so than ages. Babies & Toddlers can be used by any age from bed babies to older toddlers (2-3-year-olds) who are conversing on a more mature level. Preschool materials are perfect for older 2s or young 3s through Kindergarten. Younger kids content will meet the needs of Kindergarteners through 3rd or 4th grade. Older kids curriculum can be used with 3rd or 4th through 6th grades. Adjustments will need to be made to help you make the best use of any curriculum but we have provided a few helpful hints about each broad grade.
Babies & Toddlers:
Kids on the younger end of this age group obviously won’t be a problem to place. But as kids grow, how do you classify a “toddler?” Toddlers are generally walking, steady on their feet, and are beginning to talk. They communicate ideas and feelings through actions and expressions rather than words. The leader guide features a full page of activity suggestions for babies and gives toddlers’ teachers four multisensory Exploration Station options to help toddlers learn Bible truths. This piece also includes a Group Time experience of 2-5 minutes that you can do with toddlers. Bonus Teaching Hour suggestions are also offered as part of this Leader Guide.
Preschool can be defined in many ways. Preschoolers are more advanced in their thinking and processing and use more words to communicate with others. They are developing fine-motor skills and show interest and beginning readiness to “write” and “read.” The preschool curriculum material offers arrival activities that engage preschoolers in play as they arrive; a choice of five Exploration Station activities; and a 10-15 minute group time recommended for preschoolers.
Younger kids material will introduce topics and include concepts that might be difficult for younger kindergarteners. In an attempt to help younger kids understand God’s Word and inspire them to dig deeper in the Bible, these kids will explore new Bible words. Interactive activities are provided to help encourage younger kids to talk about the Scriptures. Younger Kids Explorer Guides are fun and informative, and each leader guide session will give suggestions on how teachers can include pre-readers into the activities. If you choose to put kindergarteners in this environment, consider that several adjustments will need to be made.
I’m excited about the older kids material, particularly because they will be given the opportunity each week to learn a word from Scripture in the original languages of the Bible. Each week the Explorer Guide will feature a “Word to Know” taken directly from the passage being studied and will show kids how the word looked when written in the original language. Other in depth suggestions will make the older kids resource ideal for a group of preteens or mature younger kids who are eager to learn about God’s incredible Word.
With a broadly graded resource like Explore the Bible: Kids you really are able to decide how your kids learn best and employ the age grouping that works best for your church environment. Enjoy exploring the resource and allow us to pray for you as the Bible illuminates for kids fantastic truths about God!