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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Judah Bible Curriculum

One benefit of teaching my kids at home is that we can study the bible together during our school day, but we don't look at it as a subject to only be completed during school. I want it to become a lifelong habit they will carry into their adult lives. I just learned of the Judah Bible Curriculum and feel it can help us accomplish our goal.

The Judah Bible Curriculum is designed to help you teach your student how to study and research the Bible and apply biblical principles to their character. It will enable you to teach the Bible to you and your students without using a curriculum so you can become self-educating students of the Word of God.

Using the Principal Approach you will teach the main ideas and principles of the Bible every year, but the student will be studying different details. Judah Bible Curriculum calls these details Bible Keys and they include individuals, events, institutions, and documents. This allows you to design the daily study to fit your family with the doctrinal emphasis left to you. A summary of the Bible Keys you will study can be seen in the Scope and Sequence.

If you are not familiar with the Principal Approach Bill Burtness, author of Judah Bible Curriculum does a great job explaining what it is:

Principle Approach refers to a philosophy of education whose content and methods are designed to build character in teacher and student capable of sustaining liberty.

The Principle Approach is a resurgence of the Biblical philosophy of education prevalent in the founding period of America, when the character of the American colonists was one of dependence on God, not the State. This enabled and impelled them to overthrow their opposition under the tyranny of England and become a new nation, free yet not in anarchy. This education was done almost entirely in the home and the church and yielded a populace that was 96% literate; today we are 46% literate.

This curriculum uses the notebook style work so nothing is consumable and can be used with the entire family. They provide blank & sample Key Sheets to go with Key Individuals, Key Events, Key Documents, and Key Institutions that are being studied. Notebooking samples are also included or you can notebook however you like. They also suggest younger children could complete art projects that focus on the weeks theme. The main thing is to spend time thinking about the passage, its meaning, its relationship to other passages, & how it effects our lives.

We received the download version of the Judah Bible Curriculum and received the Curriculum Manual, Elementary Notebook Ideas Booklet, and 8 lecture Teacher Training Seminars. I'll admit I was a little confused when I first started looking at this curriculum, it is more teacher training instead of lesson plans to follow & worksheets to fill out. I followed the steps in the Teacher Walkthrough, downloaded all the related materials, and listened to the audio files. Then I went back and started reading the materials and that's when I realized that we already study the Bible using the Principal Approach.

The 8 Audio Files are around an hour each. Bill Burtness talks about the philosophy of Judah Bible Curriculum and God's hand in History from Creation to Revelation. There is a power point presentation included to go with the audio. We got more from the audio files by me listening to them and then explaining anything to my girls that I felt they needed to know. If you have high school students they may want to listen to them along with you.

For our Weekly theme, I read the suggested text out loud to my 7, 9, and 11 year old daughters and we discussed what I read. We filled out the Key Sheets with valuable information from our text. My 7 year old got tired of filling in her Key Sheets so I'm thinking she can quietly color a picture that relates to our bible reading.

Each student will keep a notebook and anything can be added to it. We like to include maps, definitions, coloring pages, character traits of the person we read about, a list of other people with the same traits, and traits we can work on in our own life. My girls really enjoy learning this way, they ask more questions and we have more discussions when we use the Bible as our text.

This curriculum is written for the parent to learn how to teach their children how to study the Bible. It can take some time to figure out how to implement this to fit your family, but it is well worth it. This is not something you have your child complete on their own.

The Judah Bible Curriculum can be purchased as a download ($44.00) or hard copy ($69.00) and includes:
  • Judah Bible Curriculum K-12 Manual or e-book
  • Elementary Notebook Ideas Booklet, download or view online
  • Eight-lecture Teacher Training Seminars on CD, download or listen online
Sail over to the TOS Crew Blog and see what other members thought of Judah Bible Curriculum.
Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I received the download version of The Judah Bible Curriculum to use with my children, in exchange for my honest review.

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