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:
- 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.
- First Grade: John 3:16-17; the names of the four Gospels; and the books of the Pentateuch.
- Second Grade: The 12 disciples’ names; Isaiah 53:6; the books of the New Testament.
- Third Grade: The Ten Commandments; Psalm 23; the books of the Old Testament.
- Fourth Grade: Matthew 28:19-20; the “Roman Road“; and 1 John 1:9.
- Fifth Grade: The Lord’s Prayer; Psalm 1; Matthew 22:37-40.
- Sixth Grade: The Beatitudes; Ephesians 6:13-17; Galatians 5:22-23.
All Grades — Follow weekly lessons and learn about life, church, family, relationships.
Grades 5 and 6 will deal with drugs, alcohol, and puberty.
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.
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