Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor compensated in any other way.
One of my very favorite verses of scripture is Psalm 127:1 which says, Unless the LORD builds the house, They labor in vain who build it. It is always a wonderful reminder that in all that we do, we need to seek the Lord so that He is with us in every endeavor. For myself, this is the one thing I need for my children to know during our time together as home educators. Always looking for fun and interactive materials, especially for my younger ones, I was really excited to be blessed with the 4th Grade – Building Life Castles from Positive Action Bible Curriculum. We received both the Teacher Manual and Student Manual which includes 35 weeks worth of lessons, all centered around build a life that is built on Jesus Christ.
One of the things that has become so very apparent to me as we have been doing “church at home” during this period of mask mandates and quarantines is that, my children, while they know of much of the Word of God, knw very little of Jesus as the Word. The thing we do, they are flowing more out of duty than out of love. And so we need to spend some time building and developing relationships with the One who really matters so that all that we do is done in love because of the love we have for our great Creator God.
Within the pages of this Teacher Manual you will find all you need to know to get started; you will also see the earning and content objectives as well as vocabulary to focus in on; there are session note and character activities – even music curriculum to include. My girls love to sing and I am a big fan of those old hymns – So much we can learn and gain from them.
This also includes quizzes and memory work. I admit, since we started our Bible Quiz material for this year shortly before we received this program, we didn’t do as much with the memory work portion, but I did have my daughter use the verses for practice as he is trying to learn hand lettering. Such a pretty way to learn the Word; I did notice that quite a few verse they had learned through the years and it is always fun to hear my daughter announce that she “already knows this verse.”
Now I have to say, we tweaked the very first lesson a lot. As I have studied throughout the years, I prefer to focus on the Oneness of God rather than a trinitarian view. I also find that it is a lot easier for my children to understand when I explain to my children that God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are all one just wearing different hats (how their father is daddy, huband, engineer, etc). As they get older perhaps I will begin to enter into more of these sorts of things but for now they simply need to know that God manifests Himself in many different ways, God can do that, and that it is all done for our good and our salvation as we learn and develop a deeper relationship with Him.
That said (please forgive me if I got a bit preachy there) these lesson are very well put together. As you begin each one, it is clear exactly what the focus is. More difficult, possibly even new, words are introduced and defined. There are explanations to help you through each lesson, as well as prompts and discussion starters. My girl can talk – she has so many thoughts – her little sister too – so we are rarely lacking in topic to discuss. In fact in the very first lesson, Who Is Jesus, my littlest one explained in great detail for being only five, exactly how she sees Jesus. I asked her to draw a picture for me.. She just was so very vivid in her description I was certain she really had seen Him for herself. If only I could find it to share it here …
My girls are somewhat familiar with Concordances; also with Hebrew and Greek word study materials because, I love this stuff. While I am far from a scholar, when I do have a little time I love to dig in and go deep. So it was fun and inspiring to hear them comment on certain thing as we went along.
One such comment was, as we were in the lesson on the Names of Jesus, Son of God – My daughter says, that means God in the Flesh. Now some of what we discussed wasn’t in these pages. Name like Jehovah Jireh, Jehovah Shalom… Jehovah Nissi – The Lamb of God.
Something really nice about these lessons; they are one page. Nice and simple; the pages aren’t busy with color and other stuff. Just what needs to be done each day. My daughter, she struggle to focus, so a clean page for her to work on is so very helpful to her!
As we build our lives on Christ, God will transform us into strong and beautiful monuments to His grace. ~Positive Action Bible Curriculum
I was so very surprised, and thrilled, to find activities that involved locating scripture and them matching the Word to the key message within. This is a great way for our children to read the Bible AND interpret it as it relates to not just then but also right now.
Building your Life Castle was another favorite activity. Consider what you would do in various situations. In one activity we list people and situations we can choose to learn from. I love how it is written, we choose to learn. In another, it was to be considered what authorities we have the hardest time obeying. Some tough stuff for our kids to ponder. And learn from. Great way to challenge them to rise up and determine to do those hard things while they are still young.
There was map work – how fun – my younger son loves maps. He works through his own Bible Study and takes great joy in finding and exploring different parts of the land written of in the Bible. His sister was rather excited to have the chance to do that very same thing in her own materials.
As we progressed through this program, we explored so many topics that are so very integral to our children’s walk of faith. For example, what is a disciple? Here we were able to learn the names and seek them out in the scriptures. We also explored their walk from the unity they had with one another to the persecution they faced.
What better way to have a visual lesson in faith than the planting of a seed? Perhaps this was my daughters favorite activity – she loves growing thing. Flower, tomatoes, pumpkins (not always successfully but still…) are all wonderful opportunities to talk about what makes those seeds grow and what cause us to grow.
“Wise believers will trust in God’s power, depending on Him, serving others and trusting in His promises. “
Further along we learn ad remember the power of the resurrection. It is so vital to our faith, every one of us , to see how this i the fulfillment of God’s promise and hope for our very own resurrection, to come. What would be true if Jesus had not risen? According to my daughter, “we would just be worshipping and praying to a dead guy. ” Jesus resurrection shows how without a doubt, He is the one true God, great and mighty to save!
What a wonderful addition to our daily time together this is! My daughter very much looks forward to seeing what she can learn and how she can share it. There is never a dull moment when we are using this to learn the Word of God as well as live the Word of God. As soe wiser man once said (was it C.S. Lewis perhaps?) “Your life may be the only Bible some folks ever read.” Let our children grow and be that example to a world that is much in need. ❤
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