Faith is a choice and I want it to remain that way for my kids. If they want to read the Bible, that is okay with me. I am more than happy to. Therefore, it was their choice only to help me review the Zonderkidz "Faith Builder's Bible". I did not make that choice- they did. It makes for happier kids and a happier mommy.
This Bible my kids are over the moon about!
As a disclaimer- When I say Legos, that is any building bricks. We used Legos therefore herein out will use Legos but you can use any building blocks.
Legos-- what kid does not like legos?
My daughter built Jesus walking on water below. My older son did the one in the middle when God created the Earth separating water and land. My youngest son did the tree building that is in the upper right corner.
So this is a way to explore hands on, the bible through legos. Kinetic learning is one of the best ways to learn actually!
To me, as in school, you can use this to look at Christian history. Now, that does open the doors to explore other faiths as well, which I like to give my kids a well rounded view. One of my kids defines themselves as Christian, one as still looking, and the other is too young.
I have to say, when I opened it, I was very disappointed. It is a bible with a few Lego pictures in there. I expected it to be more kid friendly than it was. Maybe with instructions to show the kids how to make it but I still think it is great to use!
I do like that it shows the kids the opportunity to make faith something incorporated into every day life. It gives them the ability to see a couple of pictures and make their own.
Per my kids, not just me, they did not like it at first glance either. Mainly because they thought the Bible would be more kid friendly. They did not like that it felt like a pew Bible that had thin pages that could rip easily which are not kid friendly. The only kid friendly pages were the pages that showed how they used building blocks to show parts of the New Testament and Old Testament.
Also, per my kids, they were disappointed there were no instructions in the Bible to show them how to build the examples they used for the building blocks. Some of the verses in the bible are not super easy to re create for them.
It has both the Old and New Testaments which not all kids Bible have, and the NIVr is support to be the New International Version Reader's Version (basically NIV easy to read). It is small (with very small print which is not helpful for kids) and portable. However, it is meant for older kids.
So I gave them a faith building challenge (for my 2nd and 4th grader):
1) Read individual Bible stories (reading and history)
2) Who can make the most Lego creations from the bible? (art)
3) Who can explain about what they learned? (comprehension and public speaking)
They have accepted their challenge! Let's see where it takes us this month.
Who ever is able to make all three requirements, will win the Bible for themselves!
My younger son, who is 5, really struggled with it because while there were pictures, there were no pictorial directions for him and that lead to him being frustrated. He wanted his big brother to do it for him rather than him do it himself. So we all did it together with him. At this age, you need to sit with them while they do this. It is a great time to start open dialogue about faith. Yes, even to a five year old. They understand more than we are capable of understanding. Learning languages that start this young capture them better so why not faith and openness to God the same?
My middle child, my daughter, who is 8, struggles with faith sometimes. She just is questioning of the world around her so she has struggles with it. I actually appreciate that she is questioning the world and faith around her. Why? Why on Earth would I be okay with this? Because she is learning. If you walk into faith blindly knowing you have questions, than you are just blind and stupid. If you want into faith questioning it, you gain a much bigger understanding of it and really gain so much more from it once you are at peace with it. She actually enjoyed building Jesus walking on water and I think it could help in her faith building, regardless if it is Christian or Buddhist.
My oldest son, who is 9, almost 10 *shudders at double digits*, really actually enjoyed this. He is very strong in his Christian faith. This is without much pushing but more his learning and believing it. He really liked it. He had a hard time picking but he ended up doing the Lego of one of the days when God separated the water and the land. I can see him using this as an excuse that he is doing schoolwork and why work on anything else? I mean, come on, it is Legos after all!
I LOVE what Zonderkidz idea is and what it is trying to promote. Learning of faith into the everyday play. How genius is that?
I do think this Bible is intended for 9+ in the age group. Both for comprehension but also for ability to take the ideas they are learning and make them into lego creations.
If you have done this, I would love to see some and you can even post to Zonderkidz Facebook page or twitter page below! (tag me Via Bella in it- would love to see it!).
You can visit them on Facebook or Twitter