Review ~ With The Children On Sundays
I'm always on the look out for wonderful Bible study books to use with our children. Thanks to Grace and Truth Books and the Schoolhouse Review Crew, I have found another gem!
Grace and Truth Books was created by Dennis & Naomi Gundersen, who had long had a vision for opening a Christian bookstore. In 1994 their dream became a reality.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this product for review, all opinions are 100% my own. This post may contain affiliate links my full disclosure can be read here.
My new favorite family Bible study book is With The children On Sundays by Sylvanus Stall. It was originally published in 1893, when Sylvannus Stall felt a need for a book to help children change the way they felt about Sundays.
In the preference author speaks about how many children dreaded Sundays, as it was a day filled with criticism. So many "Don't do that" and "Don't do this" would be enough to wear down any child, and adult to! Instead he wanted to help parents show Bible truths to their children in an engaging way.
Sunday ought to be the most cheerful, sunniest, happiest and best day of the week in every home. In most homes it is the dullest and most dreary day of the week to the children, and the most taxing and the most wearying to the parents, especially to the mother. It not only ought to be but it can be made, not only the brightest and happiest but also the most influential in the character-building and religious training of the children.
~ With The Children On Sunday's pg. 9
In the chapter Suggestions For Parents, Stall gives many ideas to make Sunday's a fun and interesting day for children. The first section is about playing church. Some ideas include making it a fixed afternoon activities, and not putting it aside for any small matters that might come up. This helps to make it look and feel very important to your children. He also suggested arranging chairs and letting the children "drive" the buggy to church.
Naturally for most of us this would be updated to cars, although some creative children might enjoy pretending it was pioneer times! Another wonderful idea is having a child lead a collection in a toy bank. That money could be saved and donated to a missionary. He goes on to suggest activities for after church, ideas to include older children and games.
Did it ever occur to you, as a parent, that between the birth and the age of twenty-one years there are three solid years of Sundays-an amount of time almost equal to the number of years given to an entire course of college training? The Creator has not laid upon parents the responsibilities of parenthood without giving them ample time and opportunity to discharge these obligations to Him, to themselves, and to their children.
~ With The Children On Sundays' pg.10
With The Children On Sunday's is an oversized paperback 7 inches by 10 inches, 330 pages long. It contains 52 Bible lessons, enough to last a full year.
The first few chapters are titled:
Oyster And Crab ~ Conscience
Worm In The Apple ~ Sin in the Human Heart
Wayside Weeds And Garden Flowers ~ Neglected CS. Christian Children
Nuts ~ God Means that We Must Work
Banks ~ Gathered and Guarded Treasures
Each chapter starts out with a section titled Suggestions To Parents, in this it gives a overview of the lesson and suggests any materials you might need to demonstrate. Such as with chapter 2 Worm In The Apple, it suggested finding a good apple and a wormy apple. Since I don't have any wormy apples and you obviously can't buy that in the store lol, we simply pretended one was wormy. Since all the children have seen worms in wild apples, this was not hard! Then each lesson is about 4 to 5 pages long, followed by discussion ideas.
Each lesson also includes wonderful photos or drawings, all are black and white. The publisher in the preface, gives permission to photocopy the images for use as colouring pages. This is a wonderful idea! Our children loved colouring them while we read the lesson.
How have we been using this book? Our family has enjoyed using this book in the same way it was designed. While we don't always pretend to drive to church or some of the other ideas, we have loved using the devotions and lesson. I also LOVE that the book contains history, geography and a little math with in the lessons!
I would recommend this to anyone looking for a family devotion. I think it would most suite ages 7 to 10, but can easily be adapted to fit a larger age range.