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What Kids Must Know About the Bible at Each Age

Our teachers complained that kids in our program didn’t seem to know the Bible well. Here’s what we determined kids must know about the Bible at each age.

All the department heads and I studied child development principles in The Christian Educators Handbook on Teaching by Kenneth Gangel and Howard Hendricks. Then the department heads brainstormed ideas for what kids should know in five different areas for grades 1 through 6. Then the department heads met with their teachers once a week for four weeks to brainstorm ideas in each area. After our goals were complete, we asked Christian educators outside our church to critique the plan. Here’s our sample plan:

Bible Facts:

  • First Grade: The Bible is God’s Word to us. It tells us right from wrong.
  • Second Grade: There are 66 books in the Bible.
  • Third Grade: The division of Bible books, such as poetry, law, and minor and major prophets.
  • Fourth Grade: The Bible is inspired by God and written by different authors.
  • Fifth Grade: The authors of the Pentateuch and New Testament books.
  • Sixth Grade: The authors of the Old Testament books.

Characteristics of God:

  • First Grade: God is Creator; Jesus is God’s Son; the Holy Spirit is God’s Spirit.
  • Second Grade: God is love; Jesus is Savior; and the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin.
  • Third Grade: God is all-knowing, all-powerful, all-present, and never-changing; Jesus is God who was born and lived on earth; the Holy Spirit reveals God’s will to us.
  • Fourth Grade: The concept of the Trinity: God is Father, Jesus is Son, and the Holy Spirit lives within believers.
  • Fifth Grade: God judges our sins; Jesus is our mediator; and the Holy Spirit teaches, empowers, and gives peace to believers.
  • Sixth Grade: The different names of God; Jesus seeks a personal relationship with us; and the Holy Spirit guides the believer and reveals God’s will.

Bible Memorization:

Life Application:

All Grades — Follow weekly lessons and learn about life, church, family, relationships.

Grades 5 and 6 will deal with drugs, alcohol, and puberty.

Biblical Doctrine:

All Grades — God and Jesus are perfect and holy; we are all sinners; the blood sacrifice is the remission for our sins — Jesus was the sacrifice; the concept of heaven and hell; the goal to be Christ-like; and church ordinances.

Russell Ray
Norman, Oklahoma

Looking for more teaching tips? Check out these ideas!

9 thoughts on “What Kids Must Know About the Bible at Each Age

  1. What exactly is the “Roman Road”?

    • Christine Yount Jones

      LuAnne, here’s a helpful link to the Roman Road. Thanks for asking! We’ll add the link to the article.

  2. I would encourage you to consider also teaching introductory world view comparison for 5th and 6th graders. At that age, they are hearing plenty of contradictory information in the public schools. Many children come from un-churched homes. How will we address the things they are learning and prove to them that the Bible is true? I have found there is an important balance in teaching the Bible and also addressing what they are learning from the world.

  3. Charlene M. Jones

    Do you have something like this for preschool?


      Hi Charlene! We don’t currently have an article like this for preschool. However, we’d recommend checking with your curriculum provider to see what their preschool goals are!

  4. This is well thought out.
    I would challenge you that children can know and memorize far more than you have given them credit for. Developmentally, from 4yrs of age thru 2nd grade children can memorize loads of information. We have children who are 4 memorizing small chapters of the Bible. Lets get as much in as possible and then as they grow they will be able to think through it and apply what has been memorized. (Also, memorizing the New City Catechism is wonderful too)

    • Sierra Archuleta

      Hi Carrie!
      That is so awesome to hear! Children are certainly like little sponges and the more they are able to learn and memorize at a young age the better, as it will stick with them. Great point on children being able to apply it as they grow which will in turn grow their lifelong relationship with Jesus.

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