Hey, Acacia, read anything interesting lately?
He warns against treating the Bible like a collection of Aesop’s fables:
Could it be that instead of giving our kids the life-giving truth of Jesus each week, we have mistakenly given them moralism; something that never grows a heart for Christ but does quite the opposite. Are we giving kids the good news or just good advice?
He provides helpful charts, such as:
Then he asks the hard question:
Look at the curriculum you teach, the songs you sing, the banners you hang. Question: how much of what you teach, sing and display on Sunday could be taken over by someone from another faith? Could a Muslim step right in and pick up where you left off on nine Sundays out of ten?
I’ve read the whole PDF article, and I’m convinced. Is there a good curriculum with a gospel-centered philosophy?
Not to my knowledge. There are several that come close, but they each have their problems.
Child Evangelism Fellowship – Has a tendency to shoehorn the gospel message into every lesson. Falls short when showing the macrocosmic scheme of God’s redemptive work.
7 C’s of History – Only seven lessons. Each lesson tries to cram a month’s worth of learning points into one session. I’ll bet retention is poor.
Awanas – Not designed for Sunday morning. Relies on kids committing verses to long-term memory, but in my experience is kids rapidly cram, recite the verse, then promptly forget it.
Children Desiring God – Games are absent, as well as art projects. Lessons trend towards explaining rather than storytelling, and require teacher to be quite talk-y.
So there is curriculum….
But not good curriculum. The philosophy is there, but the pedagogy is missing. Discovery learning is left out, the need for spaced repetition is unaccounted for, and one of them actually uses paper plate crafts.
They lack vibrancy.
- Why is the church losing its youth?
- Is the Crucifixion a Dispensable Story?
- Yes, Hermeneutics Matters When Teaching Children
- Lifeway’s Educational Objectives vs. Actual Bible Teaching