Welcome to a new series where I am going more in-depth on all the different subjects we will be tackling this school year! If you want an overview of our homeschool day/week/month you can take a look at our three-part homeschool rhythm.
One area I knew I really wanted to do better this year in our homeschool was the Bible. I have tried a few different things (plans, methods, children’s Bible’s, etc) in the past and have not really been very good with sticking with them.
One of the ways I plan on making sure I follow through this year is by having our family Bible reading at the beginning of the day, since it is the very first thing we will be doing it will definitely get done.
My own personal Bible reading routine has changed a lot this year and I’ve gone from just reading the Bible to actually studying it, I don’t know why it took me so long to make the realization that I should do more than just read it.
I spent some time reading The Life and Faith Field Guide for Parents this summer and it really made me want to step up how I approach the Bible with my kids. No one ever taught me how to study the Bible which is probably why it took me until I was in my 30’s to even learn how to study it, out of all the subjects I teach my children, the Bible should be my top priority.
OUR READING PLAN
The first thing I needed to figure out was a reading plan. I would love to one day go all the way through the Bible reading every chapter with my kids but we definitely needed something more manageable to start. (And, let’s be honest, there are some chapters I’m just not willing to tackle with my elementary aged children.)
Via some Google searches I came across a 90-day Bible reading plan that I mostly liked. I printed it out and have adjusted the lengths of some of the passages so far. Once I have the readings separated to my liking I’ll share it as a free printable. (Make sure you are signed up for my newsletter and you’ll be the first to get it.)
The Bible reading plan was originally a 90-day plan but it will take us longer than that since some days have quite a few chapters and I would rather take our time than just try to cruise through to check the boxes. I’m guessing it will take us all year to go through it.
Because our Bible reading takes place during our tea time and I’m usually sipping on my homemade, dairy-free hot cocoa at this point I usually use the Bible app and we listen to the audio version.
One thing I have been doing since the winter is taking notes when I study the Bible. For the new testament I’ve gone a bit more in-depth and the old testament has been more like chapter summaries. It has helped my comprehension and retention a lot so I knew I wanted the kids to do something similar this year.
Enter Bible Journaling.
All we did was get them basic composition notebooks and each day they write the title (the book and chapters we read) and then write and/or draw something from that chapter(s).
My daughter will often write questions that she thought of while listening to the chapter being read. As you can see above in the photo on the left, she wrote: How was the ark strong (enough) to hold all that (stuff)?
Also, I am not picky about spelling when it comes to their Bible journals, if they ask how something is spelled I will tell them but there are times when my fourth grader will write a page and a half long summary, I care way more that she is writing and processing the chapter than whether or not she is spelling things correctly.
Not only does Bible journaling have them thinking about the Bible for longer than if we just read the chapters and moved on but it can create some discussion as they ask for clarification as they write or draw. Plus they are getting writing and drawing in, honestly, if we just did our Bible stuff each day I would be okay with that, in my opinion it covers all the most important subjects.
And there you have it, our super simple and yet incredibly beneficial Bible reading and journaling time!
I am so excited at the treasure these journals are already becoming, I know they will be even more so by the end of the year.
I would love to hear how you study the Bible with your children, leave me a comment below and let me know what you do!
I absolutely love the way you approach homeschooling. My daughter (6 years old) has just completed the last page in her Bible verse copywork notepad and I was trying to figure out the next thing for her and I think this Bible journaling is it! Thank you so much for sharing and keeping things simple and attainable, while also focusing on what is most important.
Oh, I hope you love it as much as we do! They are such precious keepsakes!
Carmen Pauls Orthner
This is great! So glad I saw this on our first day; we are attempting a reading plan too, and I’ve asked Sara to do a write-up/drawing from the first bit of Ruth. The previous chapters were about a man chopping up his raped to death concubine and mailing the pieces of her body to each of the tribes of Israel, and then a bloody war between the Benjaminites (some of whom did the raping/killing) and the rest of Israel. Somehow those stories were never covered in Sunday School! So I think we’ll just write/draw the nicer bit about Boaz and Ruth….
I love your idea! We’ve been using Discover the Scriptures and have completed the Old and New Testament. It similarly breaks it down and offers writing and drawing opportunities with cross word and other activities to help with comprehension. It helped keep my son engaged during age 7 and 8. I will keep this in mind as he becomes ready to journal more than a sentence or two on his own😉. Thank you!!