Do you feel the pressure to raise your child to know God? We teach our children Bible stories, and we study character qualities all because we hope that our children will come to know the Lord.
I’ve begun to realize that our kids (and ourselves) need so much more than Veggie Tales and “praise & worship” music. They do not need just an entertaining cartoon with a silly song. They need things of real substance stored in their minds at an early age. .
I believe that there is a misconception that our kids won’t understand, or we will just confuse them, so often we don’t even try. But the truth is that I would rather my children be confused, and talk through what they don’t understand, than not talk about it at all. By discussing big thoughts, they will have the opportunity to learn.
So, for our homeschool Bible curriculum, instead of learning the bible stories (of course we still talk and study the stories) that they are already familiar with, we are following The New City Catechism together as a family.
What is a catechism?
When I first saw the word catechism, I was a little intimidated. So I feel the need to share what a catechism is and how it can help your children know God.
The definition of a catechism is:
“a summary of the principles of Christian religion in the form of questions and answers, used for the instruction of Christians.”
You may have heard of Catechism of the Catholic church but memorizing questions and answers aren’t just for Catholics. The New City Catechism is a unique way for children to learn before they can read. But it can benefit adults as well. This tool can be used together as a family to build unity within the home all while teaching the fundamental truths found in the Word.
It has especially been helpful with our pre-readers, ages 2, 4, and 5-years old. For months, I searched for the perfect Bible curriculum as we started our homeschool journey. I struggled to find what I was looking for because my kids know the stories of the Bible from Sunday school and family bible time. I wanted more for them. I wanted them to know why we believe these stories. I want them to know who God is and how we can live a life that honors Him.
What does it teach?
Through the New City Catechism, my children are learning about who God is, and words like idolatry, reverence, and justification. Our kids have a curiosity and an eagerness to learn at this young age. My husband and I want to encourage this stage from a biblical standpoint. We can sit around the table and talk about what these big words mean and how they apply to us.
If your child (or yourself) is a visual learner, each question has a picture to help you remember the question and answer. During homeschool, I draw the picture on the board and challenge my 4 and 5-year-old to recreate it. Then we will talk about what we think it means and how it’s like the question/answer.
Also, one of our favorite reasons for using the New City Catechism is the songs that go along with each question. The catchy tunes have been the best tool for our children to learn the content. Even though it’s sometimes hard to get the songs out of my head, it’s a great reminder for myself to focus on biblical truths. Click here to download the entire album for free.
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