A Solid Foundation is a resource for parents hoping to establish the basics for a faith in Christ in their young, preschool-aged children. As a former Chapel leader for a private Christian school, I have a heart for children's ministry and for growing my children in God from the very beginning. Now, as a stay-at-home-mom, that has become my full-time job. Please start at the Introduction in my sidebar and use all of my material as you wish!

Friday, October 14, 2011

A Glimpse into our Day

I've had a handful of inquiries about what our days look like curriculum-wise. It's easy to picture us sitting around the dining room table formally studying Scripture, quickly flipping through flashcards, and completing worksheets. But that couldn't be further from the truth! Kids simply do not learn best through formal instruction. Instead, they learn best through play, experience, and hands-on interaction.

Here's an example of one of our days when we were learning about Creation.

The kids woke up and ate breakfast. My 3-year-old drinks soy milk, and she was asking what animal makes soy milk. I explained that it is made from soybeans which come from a plant. "Do you know who made soybean plants?" "That's right, God did. The Bible tells us the story of how God created the whole entire world. Do you want to hear it?" So, right there at the breakfast table, I opened my Bible and read Genesis 1:1-19. We talked about what it meant, and I told her that she was going to be learning lots of new Bible verses and that I had a trick to help us remember them. I then sang, "In the beginning God created, God created, God created. In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth. Genesis 1:1" to the tune of "Mary Had a Little Lamb." Since she, like most 3-year-old girls, loves music, she picked it up immediately and started to sing.

After breakfast, we headed outside to play on the playground. While swinging, she noticed some acorns in the trees and wanted to pick some. They were too high, so I explained that acorns are oak tree seeds and that God made them to grow on trees just long enough to get big and strong enough to start new oak trees. One day, when they're ready, a wind will blow or a squirrel or bird will land on the branch and shake the tree just enough for the acorns that are ready to fall off the tree and land on the ground. With water and sunshine, they grow roots that plant themselves into the ground. The roots are like little straws that the plants use to drink water and nutrients from the dirt. When they're ready, a little shoot grows out of the top called a "seedling." We then decided to go on a treasure hunt to find seedlings and fallen acorns. We went for a walk around the neighborhood looking under every tree. She collected a handful of "tree seeds" along the way and tried to match them to the trees from which they came. She also collected a handful of leaves to take home to paint with.

By this point, it was time to run some errands and come home for lunch. While I got lunch ready, I set up the table for painting. I showed her how to paint the back of a leaf with a paintbrush and to use it like a stamp on her paper. She completed her masterpiece while I fixed lunch.

Along the way, we talked about how amazing and creative God is to think of just the right way for plants and trees to create more plants and trees and thanked Him for providing the water and light needed to grow them. We also randomly sang the Bible verse all day long.

So. as cliche as it sounds, the world, and not just our dining room table, is our classroom. We simply incorporate our lesson into what we're naturally doing that day. Because of this, it's never hard to include my 18-month-old as we go. He just tags along and absorbs what he can.

I hope this helps you to think outside of the classroom box! As always, I welcome your questions and comments, so keep them coming!

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