love should be portrayed. In other words, even a thematic study should include sufficient teaching to promote a biblically accurate perception. • Does the book challenge the child’s faith? Does it promote personal application? In all our teaching of children, including teaching through books, we must aim at the heart and not merely at the head. While it is true that “faith comes by hearing” (Rom. 10:17), we must be careful to go beyond knowledge and encourage personal interaction with truth. A good children’s resource will help the child see that the truth in the story or teaching directly applies to his life, challenging the child to “taste and see that the Lord is good” (Ps. 34:8). It is a deep sadness to me that many good theologians accept sloppy teaching in children’s books and recommend books that clearly compromise doctrinal truth. Children’s literature should be subjected to the same careful scrutiny that is expected of adult books.
IN ALL OUR TEACHING OF CHILDREN, INCLUDING TEACHING THROUGH BOOKS, WE MUST AIM AT THE HEART AND NOT MERELY AT THE HEAD. WHILE IT IS TRUE THAT “FAITH COMES BY HEARING” (ROM. 10:17), WE MUST BE CAREFUL TO GO BEYOND KNOWLEDGE AND ENCOURAGE PERSONAL INTERACTION WITH TRUTH. A GOOD CHILDREN’S RESOURCE WILL HELP THE CHILD SEE THAT THE TRUTH IN THE STORY OR TEACHING DIRECTLY APPLIES TO HIS LIFE, CHALLENGING THE CHILD TO “TASTE AND SEE THAT THE LORD IS GOOD” (PS. 34:8).
2. What is the number one mistake churches make when structuring and developing a children’s Sunday school curriculum for the first time?
rather than focus on real learning. Real learning involves engaging the mind, not providing active or entertaining components. The goal of the material should be to present solid truth and promote spiritual growth.
I think the number one danger is making a curriculum choice based on the “bells and whistles” that make children’s Sunday school fun at the expense of good content. To evaluate material based on interesting graphics, video content, or the number of activities rather than on the biblical content of the material and how it is presented is to err on the side of entertainment
Another problem that is prevalent is allowing current trends to inform your content rather than carefully formulating a scope and sequence that emphasizes correct doctrine and the full counsel of God. The material becomes “lop-sided,” and children receive inaccurate, insufficient, and sometimes even spiritually harmful teaching.
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