To most people, the first few years of life spent on Earth are their most important years. The things that a child learns, experiences, and notices in the first few years of his or her life will provide a foundation for his or her faith and thoughts for the rest of his or her life.
In Proverbs, the Word of God says, “Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.” That is why our Heavenly Father deemed it wise that parents should be closest to their children in their children’s early years – which are significant formative years.
When successful people are asked what has made them so successful, they would answer again and again: “We can only thank our parents.”
Parents, you are holding in your hands the keys to your children’s future, and we believe that this curriculum is one of the keys that will assist you in unlocking the bright future ahead of them. A mother will save every cent of her income for her daughter’s music lessons – and will listen with tears in her eyes one day when her daughter performs on the world’s stages. A father will sacrifice his valuable afternoons to attend his son’s sports practice – and will see with a lump in his throat one day how the crowds are cheering his son on.
Only a parent will notice a child’s gift to draw, work with words or argue, and will stir up that passion.
What a wonderful privilege it is to be such a parent!
Children are living in their own wonderland – and their brains have twice as many neurons as adults have. The reason for this is that they have to learn to do everything from scratch: to
walk, stand, run, sit, eat and speak. They need to learn a language and to recognize and identify smells and tastes. The Creator of the universe created their little brains to be super active and super intelligent and He planned it all and made them to be like that. Their brains are like ‘hungry’ sponges that absorb and store everything and they shape children’s frame of thoughts for the rest of their lives.
In this wonderland of your child’s imagination, you as parents will sow the first seeds of faith. Lessons learnt from my Bible friends, is based on the idea that children are living in a special world of their own and that they will learn best are learned best from the examples of other children. That is why their stories are full of clever and amusing little characters, from Shrek to tiny elves – and why their imagination is stimulated by those well-known words: “Long ago …”
Well, long ago, a little boy named David lived far away… Immediately, your children will want to hear more about this little boy. The lessons they will learn from this story will inspire them.
There are many moving stories about children in the Bible. The story of each child in the Bible tells us about his or her unique journey of faith and includes different lessons. In this curriculum, your children’s Bible friends will introduce them to many of these stories, and your children will remember and cherish these stories and lessons for the rest of their lives.
The stories were written with your children in mind and were illustrated in a unique way to develop and strengthen their faith. We must use the imagination of our children to develop their faith and establish their love of and trust in God’s Word.
Every child mentioned in the Bible has something special to teach children today. Irrespective of whether it is a story about Joseph or about Samson, their stories all start when they were little children. Children need to realize that God can use them from a very young age. Every child is truly special, with his or her own personal calling and place in the Kingdom of God. This is ex-citing news!
Each lesson is based on a specific child or idea taken from the Bible. These Bible friends all have something special in common, which they would like to impart to today’s children, something that will illuminate the formative years of the children and will guide them on their way. Each lesson includes a story from God’s Word, a moral lesson, the essence of the lesson, Bible verses, and activities that will engage the children creatively and directly.
It is a fact that God the Father has called and inspired people to announce to the world His great truths and messages. “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” In the same way, we believe that one child will be able to reach other children with the message of the Gospel.
We trust that the special children whose stories are told in lessons learnt from my Bible friends will become your child’s best friends. This curriculum will enable parents to prepare their children spiritually for a wonderful life in Christ.
Notes to facilitators
We have developed a unique method on which all lessons are based. Each lesson is set out as follows:
The lesson: At the beginning of each lesson, a paragraph containing the lessons to be learnt from the life of the Bible friend is given.
The story: Each lesson tells the story of a specific Bible friend in such a way that it will capture the children’s imagination. The Bible friends will become part of their lives today and the stories will stay with them in the future. The characters are portrayed in such a way that every child will be able to identify with them.
The Word: God’s Word will always be at the heart of every lesson. The lesson is based on Scripture. Please note that the Bible verses and text will aid your preparation. In the Facilitator’s
Guide, a few of the verses will be included, but you need to have your Bible at hand when preparing for the lessons.
Activities: Activities are used to reinforce the content of the lesson and are presented as fun exercises while the children are learning. Please note that these activities do not necessarily have to be done at the end of a lesson.
Preparation: You as facilitators should read the Guide carefully in preparation for a lesson. It is important to take note that the Facilitator’s Guide can be seen as a guideline only; you are
allowed and encouraged to use your own initiative in presenting the lessons.
Remember that children are creative. You should inspire them to discover things themselves and to live a life of faith to the full. The idea, always based on the Word, together with a fun activity, kindles a fire that will keep on burning for the rest of their lives.
God bless and all the best,
Louis Wilsenach & Naomi Bezuidenhout
This is the Facilitators guide, you’ll also need the related workbook – Lessons From My Bible Friends (Grade 1 – Workbook)
Format: print, soft cover, one colour
Size: 297mm x 210 mm, 85 pages
Age: 5-7 years, Grade 1