CSM’s Hope Bearer

Since we have started homeschooling many years back, I have always been on the look out for Bible curriculums we can use not just at home but also for our church’s kids ministry. I was delighted to know that this December, CSM has launched their newest curriculum made for Sunday School entitled Hope Bearer: Lessons of Hope and Courage in Times of Crisis and Change. 

We all know that the pandemic has changed the landscape of Sunday School ministry and to aid teachers and parents in this season, this curriculum was developed with the message that there is hope in God and we can always rely on Him. During this time of crisis, we must not forget our children need to understand  that God is still faithful, powerful and reliable and that they can trust Him.

Hope Bearer contains 30 lessons of hope and courage for children suitable for ages 4-12. It is a tool for teachers to use in the  regular Sunday school ministry, online ministry or even in the home setting.

Hope Bearer includes:

¨      options for adjusting activities to suit online classes;

¨      links to online action song videos to enhance Bible learning;

¨      downloadable Teaching Pictures and craft templates families can print at home;

¨      suggestions for collaborating with parents to enable home-based Sunday school;

¨      a checklist for monitoring children’s spiritual growth and character development.

Here are some photos of the lessons:

The curriculum has an easy to follow layout and has already listed all the information one would need to prepare for Bible lessons. For every lesson, there is a Bible Text, Objectives, Memory Verse, Opening Activities and Closing Activities. The Opening Activities is further divided into Connect, Study and Apply.

A spiritual growth and character development checklist is included and it can be helpful to teachers and parents to see the cognitive, affective and psychomotor development of the children. They can use the checklist as goals for the children as well.

This is a good guide for parents since there is minimal preparation needed and has very detailed instructions on the different activities.

Hope Bearer is in paperback edition and contains 116 pages. It is currently available for 269 pesos only from CSM Publishing’s Lazada store . For more information, you may visit CSM Publishing’s website.

Grapevine Studies The Resurrection Review

In the past 6 years of homeschooling, I have seen other homeschoolers write about Grapevine Studies and I ‘ve always been interested to try it so when I got the opportunity to review one of their products, Resurrection: Multi-Level, I was excited to see how my kids ages 12 and 9 would like this homeschool Bible curriculum.

Birth of John to Jesus' Ministry {Grapevine Studies Review}
We are taking a break from our usual Bible curriculum and decided to use Grapevine Studies since February. This review of the study about Resurrection came very timely since there are a few weeks before Easter. I received a digital copy in PDF format of the Resurrection: Multi-Level product. The files I received were:
– Teacher’s Guide
– Student Blank Worksheets
– Student Traceable Worksheets

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Grapevine Studies is the brainchild of John and Dianna Wiebe. Their children are homeschool and college graduates already and John is actively involved in teaching adult Sunday class in their church while Dianna helps John prepare for his lessons. Grapevine offers a tool that is easy to teach and help children process, understand and respond to the Bible.

The method of Bible study is through the reviewing of timeline, reading the Word of God, drawing stick figures from the passage, answering the questions about the lesson, memory work, a bit of Bible geography and using a Bible dictionary.

Aside from printing the Student Traceable Worksheets for my 9 year old son, we also used pens, markers, a Bible and a Bible dictionary. We also used a folder to store all the print outs. For my 12 year old artistic daughter, she opted to use a blank paper and draw her own version of stick figures.

The Resurrection study starts from The Last Supper shared by Jesus and His disciples. As my children listen to me read the scriptures assigned for the lesson, my son traces the outlines from the printout while my daughter creates her own stick figures.

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There is a total of at least 8 passages per lesson and each lesson approximately takes 40 minutes for us to finish. We used the product at least 3 times a week (with my kids begging to do some more each time)!  9 lessons is included for this Resurrection unit study. Here is a view of its contents.

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At the end of the lesson, there are ready made questions which I discussed with them. In the teacher’s guide, the answers are already provided. The questions are all related to the lesson with one question in the end that asks “what did you learn about God form this lesson”. Then the children are asked to draw about their favorite passage and to write down the memory verse.

What I Think About This Product

I loved this product! Here are my reasons:

  1. This is a very conversational and interactive kids bible study. I chose to read the Bible passages to my children even if they can do so by themselves because I wanted to interact with them and ask questions and be able to answer their questions. Through this approach, we had meaningful discussions about Christ and the happenings around His Resurrection more vividly.
  2. The product is Bible-centered. We read the Bible together as a family, and our discussions came from the stories and the situations each character faced. The children also saw how each of the gospels were related as we jumped from one text to the other. I liked it because it allowed us to see the connections in the Bible especially the gospels. It also allowed us to know more about God and His character through the lesson-end questions.
  3. The product is very easy to follow and use. Not much prior preparation needed at all and the teacher’s guide is easily understandable. My children were also able to easily follow and understand the flow of the lesson.
  4. I can use the product across all levels. This product is good for families with multi-level children.
  5. I will recommend this product to our kids ministry too. It is a good bible study material for children’s church too.

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For more information on Grapevine, follow them on their social media accounts.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GrapevineStudies/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GrapevineStudy
Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/GrapevineStudy

For more reviews on the different Grapevine Studies products, click on the graphic below.

Birth of John to Jesus' Ministry {Grapevine Studies Review}

Crew Disclaimer

Homeschool Help: Bible Curriculum

For the past 4 years that we have been homeschooling, we have used a couple of curriculum for our Bible study time. I’m sharing with you 3 Bible currciulum that we have tried. We liked them but each has its own advantage and disadvantage.  Of course, you should still give these curriculum a try to see if it fits your own family. Please also note that this is not a sponsored post.

For our first year, we have opted to try the Alpha Omega Lifepac Bible series. It comes in a box of 10 individual workbooks. It is a complete package already as it contains readings, worksheets and tests. Answer key is also provided and minimal intervention from the teacher is needed.

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We used this material for 2 years. What we didn’t like is that the workbooks are consumable, meaning, I have to buy another set for my next child and it is quite costly. I also didn’t like that it inserted english lessons in between certain unit studies. It was out of synch for us since we were not using Alpha Omega Lifepac for our other subjects.  I am also looking for something that I can use on a multi-level homeschool.

So we moved on to Big Book of Questions and Answers by Sinclair Ferguson. It contains a list of questions about the Christian faith. It has a list of activities, prayers and Bible references.

We liked this curriculum because it was very simple and straight forward. The kids enjoyed the activities and clarity of the lessons. The questions were thoroughly discussed and answered.

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This curriculum is better used with the guidance of the teacher and family discussion would prove to be the best way go with this curriculum. We were able to buy this at a local Christian bookstore. We finished the 2 books in one semester.

After we finished, we moved on the Bible Study Guide for All Ages by Mary Baker. This curriculum was recommended by a friend and we liked this curriculum because it goes through the entire Bible, chapter by chapter and you can use this study with the whole family. Everyone studies the same text and family discussion works for our family. Aside from theology, the kids learn to apply what they learn in their lives.

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I enjoy Bible Study Guide for All Ages since I get to learn along with the kids. I also love the family discussions we have and the in-depth study that we get out of this curriculum. This has 4 units and each unit has 104 lessons. Each unit can last for one school year.

We hope to continue on with Bible Study Guide for All Ages for the next few years.

Following God Bible Curriculum Review

The beginning of this school year, my son who is in Kindergarden used Following God Bible Curriculum and Character Building for his Bible subject. We chose it as it was recommended by The Master’s Academy. It is locally published by ICI Ministries Inc.

The Following God series invites students to follow God and trust Him as their Lord, Savior and Friend. Each of the lessons shows a story from the Bible and blends it with values education. Each lesson comes with a memory verse, explanation what the Bible says, fun facts, fun activities and prayer guide. The activities include pages which the student can choose to color, words to trace, few mazes, connect the dots. Upon completion of each unit, there is a certificate which you can use to award your student.

There are 3 units  in the entire book and 10 lessons in each unit. This book focuses on God’s creation, God’s love and God’s help.

My son enjoyed the coloring activity at the beginning of the course but eventually got tired of it.The lesson seems simple enough for kindergarden kids but I think it lacks depth and isn’t engaging the students enough to actually remember the lessons each time. For homeschool, I think you need to supplement this curriculum with other materials to make it more interesting.  This would make a good Sunday school curriculum though.