Saturday, September 24, 2016

Family Learning: Bible Time

Bible Time is the only thing my family has done consistently since starting homeschooling, back when my oldest {who is almost 14 now} was 4! Bible Time {such a simple thing to call it, but it's what we've always called it} is a non-negotiable in our day for several reasons. First of all, giving my children a firm foundation and teaching them what they need to build on that foundation is my main goal in homeschooling. Secondly, Bible Time is such a precious time with my family. It blesses me each and every day. And last of all, I have learned so much from our Bible Time!

We actually have two Bible Times in our house. Overkill, you think? Never! My kids and I look forward to Bible Time each day. If they think I'm going to forget, they remind me. If we don't have it for some reason, they miss it.

In the morning, we are using Foundations 2: Christ our Messiah for our Bible Time. We start each morning with prayer and Bible Time. I really like Foundations 2, which goes through the Gospels and Acts, as it has a weekly schedule with daily readings, scripture memory, questions and activities all planned out for me. Each of the kids has a 1/2 inch binder for Foundations. We write and illustrate our memory verse each week as well as illustrating each new book we start with facts and information about the book and author.

We practice our memory verse each morning, go through the books of the Bible, and read our chapter for the day. I stop every few verses to explain things or ask {or answer} questions. We have read through Matthew, and now we are in Mark. When we come to a passage of scripture that was recorded in Matthew, we remember and state the similarities and any differences in the stories. We talk about why the stories might be different, and my 11 year old had the best answer - everyone is telling the story from their point of view or from their memory, so there will be slight differences. {This is why I love discussion of the Bible with my children! Such insight.}

In the evening, we were picking a book {at random!} and reading through the book several chapters a night. Before we read, I pray and ask the Holy Spirit to give wisdom, insight and understanding to each of us, even my preschooler. His Word tells us that when we ask for wisdom, He will give it to us. Again, I stop every few verses to explain things, and we have a lot of discussion among ourselves. We just decided to read straight through the Bible as a family, so we are still in Genesis. After we read, we each pick a song to sing. As my kids range in ages from 4-almost 14, our songs range from "This Little Light of Mine" to "Our God is an Awesome God" to "Amazing Grace". It is such a sweet time together! We finish off with prayer, sometimes I pray, sometimes my husband prays, and sometimes we all take turns praying.

*A final tip*: I do read a children's Bible to my younger children throughout the day, but they retain so much from listening to the Word of God! And they can memorize scripture just as well as the older kids, without even trying! Always include your little ones in family Bible Time, and don't underestimate their ability to understand or remember things. Remember to ask the Holy Spirit to give your children to wisdom and insight to understand the Word.

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