So, on to the list. Again, I am recommending things that I have personally used. Let's get started...
These are the Miller books, well known for their sweet simplicity and family focus.You could easily start with these books as young as 5 or 6. The books are chapter divided, but each chapter is just a few pages, with rather large print. The Millers are a Mennonite family, who each day study God's Word together, and the father or mother always have a story or some kind of application from the verses they are studying. The stories are very entertaining for children of ALL ages! I looked forward to reading these books as much as the kids looked forward to hearing them.
We read our Miller books several years ago, but my children still talk about lessons they learned from those books. We have used the Wisdom book, and the Prudence book. I have the Storytime book; we just haven't used it yet. The Wisdom book is our absolute favorite! I typically read one story after our morning Bible study when I am using these books, but they would also be wonderful bedtime stories!
One note: the Missionary book is for older children. I do not own it, but have been told that it is based on martyrs, so it is not for the younger children who might not be ready for the intensity of the stories. Use your own judgment. Other than that, I HIGHLY recommend that you get these books for your Bible time. You won't be sorry, I promise!!
Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends is one of the most beneficial books I think your children could ever read. The book is written by three siblings; a brother, and his two sisters. They cover everything concerning sibling relationships in this book. The book is filled to the brim with funny stories from their own life.
(Now, first off, let me say that if you aren't aware, I am an only child. That is correct. An only child who gave birth to ten children. I needed this book. I have zero experience in understanding brother/sister relationships. I was stunned at the amount of fighting, arguing, bickering and competing that was going on with my children. This book explained it all.)
The book handles all kinds of issues that arise between siblings. It deals with selfishness, arguing, having to be right, etc. And it gives some extremely practical ideas for dealing with these things. One of my daughters read it more than once on her own, and I have read most of it out loud to the rest of the kids. I am about to start it over, so that they get a good refresher course from the beginning.
If a family, especially the children, was encouraged to begin to apply the principles from this book, I think they would begin to see some real change in the home, especially if there has been a lot of conflict already. For the younger set, say 12 and under, I think that Mom would need to read it aloud and help the children to work through some of the issues.
Next up...my children's absolute favorites. Especially if you have boys in your home, the Scripture Sleuth is the way to go!!
These books are about a boy named Concord Cunningham, or Concordance, as he is affectionately called by some. Each chapter in these books begins with a story. In the story, there is some type of mystery to be solved. Now here's where it gets good...to solve the mystery, you give your child the clue, which is a Bible verse. The Bible verse itself doesn't give the complete answer. Your child has to figure out how to solve the mystery by using the verses given.
In our house, here's how we did this. We made teams of two kids each; each team went to a separate spot in the house and tried to figure out how to solve the mystery. When they all came back together, I let them each have a go at explaining the mystery. To make it easy for Mom, the answers are in the back of the book. If you don't have enough kids for teams, they could just do it with you. These are pure fun, but also help your kids find their way around their Bibles. My kids eyes light up when I bring out one of these books.
If you are looking for more of a workbook style Bible study for your kids to do alone, the Kay Arthur studies for kid are perfect. My kids have done MANY of these study guides, and they have loved them all. These guides take a good, strong reader, unless you want to help your child with them. They will learn to mark their Scripture passages, just like in the adult Precept studies. These studies teach the inductive method of Bible study, which will be helpful as your child grows and desires to do Bible study on his/her own. These guides are only a few weeks long, so you might want to order more than one at first. My kids are always disappointed when they finish one and the new one isn't here yet! They have all looked forward to doing these studies, and I have two boys who have been pestering me to order one for them for a while now. I guess I should follow my own links!!
This is MY favorite way to start our day. Hymn studies. I think I will actually devote an entire post to this topic later on...because I want to move on to the absolute best resource I have ever used for Bible Study with kids.
Who Is God? And Can I Really Know Him? is published by Apologia, the company so many of us depend on for our Science needs. I had heard about this book from several moms, but the price...OUCH. I finally borrowed a friends' copy to examine carefully, and to decide if we needed to bite the bullet and purchase it. What ended up happening was that the friend loaned me her copy to use, but if she hadn't, I would have immediately bought it.
How can I justify $40 for a Bible study book? Well, how can I justify $180 for a Math program like Teaching Textbooks? How do we justify $300 for a foreign language program like Rosetta Stone? We do it because we have decided it is important for our children. So why NOT spend $40 on a Bible study book? Is it not equally or MORE important?
This book is not consumable, but rather is a hardback, glossy book that can be reused with all your children. Included are read aloud sections, notebooking assignments, (which you can use as directed, orally, or just skip), questions for discussion, stories, and more.
I found it very easy to give my older children writing assignments from the chapters. We read, write, and discuss. This book teaches a Biblical worldview. I assign the Scripture passages out so each child has a turn to read aloud from their Bible. There is a lot of Scripture in each lesson. A lesson takes about two weeks to complete. There is also a notebooking journal available if you like that kind of thing.