Helping Children Read the Bible

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To help children love the Lord with all their heart, soul and strength, we must teach them the Scriptures (cf. Deuteronomy 6:7).

Here are ten practical suggestions for helping children read the Bible:

Do it together.

Talk about the Scriptures at home (cf. Deuteronomy 6:7). The Bible is about relationships (with God and others) and is well suited to family settings. Take turns reading/hearing it. Fix a regular time for doing it together (e.g., supper). Make it interactive and experiential.

Make it appealing.

Children draft off the emotions of their parents. Read the Bible together with excitement, wonder and passion. Be dramatic. Be expressive. Add fun elements.

Connect it.

Relate the Scriptures to real-life events that are happening here and now. Capitalize on teachable moments – form links to your children’s interests and experiences. Think like a boy/think like a girl. Show children the bigger picture.

Apply it.

Find hands-on ways to enable children to live what they learn. For example, if you’re reading about loving others, ask your children to accompany you on a hospital visit.

Talk about it.

Facilitate dialogue and discussion. Foster an environment for asking questions and making comments. Keep it conversational. Encourage children to share their thoughts. Help them reflect on their interpretations and perceptions. Chat about your own experiences and insights. Use illustrations, testimonies and stories.

Be creative.

Sing the Scriptures. Act them out. Use finger puppets. Make things. Write a play. Dress up. Speak with accents or different voices. Play experiential games. Eat what biblical characters ate (e.g., matzos when reading about the Passover in Luke 22).

Go visual.

Pictures, drawings and other visuals help children understand concepts, remember, and stimulate their imagination. Download the free Bible App for Kids. Check out the Bible Project and Max7.

Be realistic.

Don’t expect too much. Don’t settle for too little. There will be stops and starts, setbacks and victories. Roll with it. Pray. Encourage your children to persevere.

Use age-appropriate resources.

Check out Scripture Union’s Bible reading guides and Scripture books for children at Christian Books Canada. And a shout-out for Phil Vischers What’s in the Bible? DVD series – it’s an excellent resource for elementary-age children.

Do it yourself.

More is caught than taught. Children learn to value what you value. Model a love for God’s Word. When children see you regularly reading the Bible, it helps them develop a Bible-reading habit.

Contribute by sharing your comments, guidelines or practical ideas for helping children read the Bible.

Related Article

Helping Children Pray

© Scripture Union, 2023

2 Corinthians 4:5

6 Responses

  1. There is no better way to introduce children to the daily reading of God’s Word than together as a family. Thank you for such practical advice in giving children a love for God’s Word. The application to every day living is vitally important. Children need to understand how God speaks through His Word into every day life. This is wonderful advice for families

  2. “But whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither — whatever they do prospers” Psalm 1:2-3.
    Bible reading is essential for children. They can learn the value of reading the Bible from us. May God Bless you and your Ministry.

  3. Children like building blocks. Here is a set for parents to help them on the way to helping their children to grow in their connection with their Father God through regular adventures with His Word. Nothing complex, just great reminders to create lasting family traditions and build for eternity. Read on and enjoy!

  4. This is so good! I especially like #1. However, if children struggle to read generally, listening to the text may help. There are apps to help facilitate this.
    Youversion, Dwell and Bible Gateway give options to listen.

  5. Researches tell us that many young people drop off their faith because they find that it is not relevant to their daily lives. I like this article because it is down to earth, reminding parents that we need to relate the Holy Bible to children in practical and creative ways so as to arouse their interest and passion for reading the Bible.

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