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Want a quick snapshot of the first week in Truth in Tinsel? Then you’ve come to the right place! I won’t go into detail about how to do each craft (hopefully you’ve already bought the book and have all the instructions anyway!).
Day One: Jesus is the Light of the World
Check out my full post about this project if you’d like. Grab the book The Light of the World: The Life of Jesus for Children to go along with this project!
Day Two: Jesus is King
In day two of Truth in Tinsel, we learn that Jesus is King! I love this craft because it is simple and easy for almost any age. We recently had a Christmas party at the house and everyone loved this one! Crowded around the table were 9 kids ages 18 months to 2nd grade and everyone loved the project.
Alas, we did use a lot of glitter during that party!
Day Three: Zechariah
We ended up running out of time today, so we didn’t get to this project. Sad!
Day Four: Angel
We already had an angel on the tree from last year’s adventures, so we just reviewed the story using the Jesus Storybook Bible. Abigail’s been very interested in angels lately, so this was an especially compelling story for her!
Day Five and Six: Mary and Elizabeth
Since Mary and Elizabeth were both included on the day six template, we just combined these projects and skipped making a separate Mary. One day five we painted and constructed the ladies and then on day six we role played using our new characters (I put them on Popsicle sticks for easy handling). This was such a rewarding day I might put up a separate post. It was so fun hearing the kids retell the story with the puppets.
Day Seven: Mary’s Song
For these CD’s, we used stickers to decorate the CD’s. It worked great!
It’s Never Too Early To Read Scripture!
You may remember my review for the Toddler Bible back in February. We’ve been reading this book on and off throughout the year and though my 2 year old (almost 3) still really enjoys it, you can tell she is ready to move on to something different. And as Sam Luce says, it’s best to stay “one Bible ahead” of your child. So of course, when I heard Gilbert Beers (the author of the Toddler Bible) had come out with a Preschool Bible, I jumped at the chance to review it.
Many of my observations are the same at the Toddler Bible — let’s take a look!
- Again, I like the Scripture references next to the stories in the Table of Contents, but it would have been nice if those were on the actual pages as well.
- This is a very interactive story book, allowing plenty of room for pausing and discussing pictures and what’s happening in the story. Questions sprinkled throughout the pages provide parents a springboard to talking with their kids about Scripture and their faith.
- Emphasis on obedience; Many stories mention the obedience and disobedience of characters and the consequences or blessings that resulted. As a parent who is trying to teach the importance of obedience, I appreciate this factor!
- Emphasis on relationship; As I was reading through the story of Abraham, I noticed the phrase “Abraham loved God and God loved Abraham” (p36), showing readers that God desires a relationship with his creation (and He always has).
- Multicultural Characters: There are a variety of skin tones in this book, which is great for kids to see.
- New Testament: As I mentioned before, I hate it when kids Bible’s completely skip over the New Testament, but this Bible does a great job covering the life of Jesus, Peter, Paul, and even Timothy.
- Parallel to the Toddler Bible: If you’re already reading the Toddler Bible with your little one, this is a great book to transistion to. The stories are almost all the same, but with added details. Perfect for a kid who has outgrown The Toddler’s Bible and is ready for a little more.
- Transitions: Again, like the Toddler Bible, some of the openings of the stories seemed very abrupt and disconnected to the story before it. Ironically, the story I most noticed this with after the introduction of Jacob and Rachel. Page 63 ends with “God has special plans for Jacob and Rachel” and page 64 opens with “Joseph’s brothers do not like him.” Who is Joseph anyway? I have to admit there are very abrupt transitions than with the Toddler Bible, but it could still use a little work.
- The angels are too girly.
- Another great product from David C. Cook and Gilbert Beers. It would make a great Christmas gift for your preschooler (I know that’s what I’m doing with my review copy!) Get Yours Today! You can pick up a copy either at David C. Cook’s website or on Amazon (currently $12).
Want to Win A Copy?
Interested in your own copy? Leave me a comment and tell me your fave Bible story for a chance to win. Oh yeah, if you follow me on twitter, that’s a bonus entry (leave another comment). Contest ends November 17th, 2012.
UPDATE: CONTEST HAS ENDED.
Check Out What Other Kidmin People Are Saying:
A Different Way Blog (Giveaway too)
Steven Knight (Giveaway too)
Disclaimer: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressions are my own.
Have you noticed the advertisement for David C. Cook’s Home Front in the right hand corner of my home page? Well, I’m thrilled to announce that David Cook has chosen to sponsor Growing Kids Ministry for the next year! During that year, I’ll be highlighting some of their resources in posts like this. Today, I wanted to share some details about their Home Front magazine — an online resource for parents. It’s packed with 24 pages of family faith ideas, traditions to try, conversations starters and articles on parenting and marriage. Best of all, it’s FREE!
As I browsed through this full color magazine on my Kindle Fire (you can learn how to email documents to your Kindle here or you can sign up for the monthly newsletter and download directly from the monthly email), I was absolutely amazed at all the great content!
Here’s a few features from the October 2012 Issue:
- Ideas for starting (or continuing) family faith time
- Setting up a Harvest Offering in order to give to others
- Create: Making a gospel-centered craft for a child’s backpack (my favorite article)
- Story about Haiti and some Haiti facts in the “Global” section
- A great story about slowing down and spending time with your kids
- Devotional ideas for even the littlest ears (ages 3 and under) in “Tot Time”
- Ways to build faith muscles for kids in grades 6-8
What Do You Think?
As a new-ish mom, I’m checking out Bible resources for little ones with serious fervor. That’s why I was thrilled to receive The Toddler’s Bible from David C. Cook. We’ve been using the Read and Share Bible for our now 2-year old daughter, but I thought this new Bible might be a better fit. Here’s the scoop:
- The Table of Contents: I like the Scripture references next to the stories. It would have been nice if those were on the actual pages as well.
- Questions throughout the book. This is a great way to keep little ones engaged. Likewise, the little things like “Look at the walls” and “See the golden chest” are great for opening up conversations.
- Good pacing: I was glad to see a Bible that didn’t spend 5 pages on Creation and 5 more on the Plagues and then completely skip the New Testament. This Bible seemed to give a good spread of Old Testament and New Testament stories.
- Not too many details. With a book as big as the Bible, it’s tough to condense all the stories down without losing the main things. The Toddler Bible seemed to capture the main points without drowning a little one in too many details.
- New Testament: It’s a pet peeve of mine when picture Bibles spend 300 pages on the Old Testament and then completely skip over the New Testament, ending the Bible right after the gospels. This seems to do a good job of illustrating key points of Paul’s life and the early church.
- The index of stories in the back. This is a great way to teach kids about Cool Bible Tools early on.
- I liked the “Sight”, “Sound”, “Touch” suggestions on page 9, but I didn’t get the reference for “Life Issue” or “Spiritual Building Block”, and I don’t think most parents will either.
- Transitions: Some of the openings of the stories seemed very abrupt and disconnected to the story before it. For example page 62-63 ends with “Someday Jacob and Rachel will get married” and the next set of pages opens with “Oh no! No one would sell their own brother!”. There’s a lot that happened between Jacob and Joseph! I know you can’t include everything, but it seems like there could have been a smoother flow.
What I’d Change
- The book is a bulky for little hands. I might make the pages a little bigger and the book less thick. I know parents will usually be reading the book to the child, but wouldn’t it be great if it were easy for them to pick it up on their own and read?
- The Illustrations: While the illustrations were very good, I think they could have been a little more attention grabbing. Although for ages 1-3 (which is who the Bible is designed for), they may be just right. I know the books our 2-year old daughter really loves have bold colors, but clearly (based on my reading experiments), this doesn’t seem to be a major obstacle. Also, the angels are a little girly for my taste.
- I was reading this Bible today with a two-year old girl and it wasn’t until page 180 that she started to get fidgety. I decided to close the book and take a break and she instantly asked for more. Good sign!
Get Yours Today!
I’ve been following a blog called Impress Your Kids for some time now, and have admired the creative ways the author Amanda uses to teach her kids about God and Scripture. When she announced she had written an e-book called Truth and Tinsel, and was looking for bloggers to review it, I nearly lunged out of my chair in an attempt to send her an email. I just finished browsing through the book, and I can tell you, I am not disappointed. Not one bit.
In her introduction, she shares the history of the book, which goes like this:
When my daughter was just a year old, I bought her an Advent Calendar book. Each day, she’d open a tiny flap in the back and then we’d read the corresponding page in the book. The first day the book instructed us to make a Christmas ornament to go along with the story. We did (I think it was made out of construction paper and had some stickers slapped on it) and my daughter was in love! Every single day of December she wanted to make an ornament. However, the book didn’t continue with ornaments each day, so we made some up ourselves! They were mainly made from paper, glue, markers and maybe a ribbon if I could scrounge one up.
We had so much fun making a little craft together during that Christmas season. What was even more fun is that my little bitty girl started understanding the Christmas story. She’d talk (or babble) about Mary, Joseph, and Jesus.
Amanda goes on to tell how she tried a few new things over the next few years, but she and her daughter always returned to the Christmas ornaments, because of their story value. My daughter is just about to turn two, so I am especially interested in ways to make Christmas meaningful for her this year.
Won’t Break the Bank!
As I opened up Truth in Tinsel, I was so impressed with all the super cute and easy ideas. I especially love that most people will already have most of the supplies on hand already. Even if you had to go out and buy things, the cost for making everything in this book would probably be under $10 and you would have some truly wonderful memories.
Up for a Challenge?
We’re really into crafting right now (I have another girl that comes to my house for child care). I’m always browsing around on Pinterest trying to gather up ideas. With Amanda’s book, I now have 24 simple crafts that all tie into the Christmas story and I couldn’t be more excited about it! She also issued a challenge to “give” December to your kids by participating in the crafts and Scripture every day. I’ll take the challenge! Stay tuned for more posts and pictures of all the fun. Check out the list of days at the bottom of this post!
Good for Kidmin Too!
Another great way to use this book is in your Children’s Ministry during the down time of the Christmas play practice. If you’re in kidmin, you know this problem all too well. What do you do with the kids who aren’t actively practicing? Or with guests for that matter? You want something that’s going to be engaging, but isn’t going to suck up too much man-power, or require a ton of set-up or clean-up. Truth in Tinsel is a perfect solution! kids will be engaging in the Christmas story, but will also be readily available to practice when their part comes up. Fabulous.
My Favorite Parts
Okay, want to hear my favorite parts about the book? I’ll tell you a few, but I don’t want to give it all away! Of course, I love the fact that each craft has a corresponding Scripture passage or story. I also love the “do more together” feature. This is perfect if you’ve a few extra minutes one day and want to make a really good memory with your kids. I also love that the crafts are designed for the younger set, and there are parts of each ornament that even a toddler can participate in.
Some of my favorite crafts?
- Mary and Elizabeth who have pop-dots for their pregnant bellies!
- The city of Bethlehem made out of an egg carton.
- The temple made out of an old Christmas card
- The scented ornament made out of homemade dough.