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What does Bible/Devotions/Quiet Time look like for your younger kids?


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What does Bible/Devotions/Quiet Time look like for your younger kids?

 

My boys are 8 and 6. Currently, we read the Bible together in the morning and pray together.

 

I've begun to wonder how to encourage them to have their own personal time with God. I'd love to hear what age you began to encourage your children in this, what age they actually began doing this independently, and what it looks like in your home.

 

Thanks!

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Although we have always done a 'together' Bible lesson/devotional to start our school days, this is the first year I have encouraged the girls to have their 'alone time' devotions. I should have started a few years ago, but didn't. But now at ages 12 and almost 14, I think they can really see the value in having a quiet time. They are using Principle Thing Journals by Queens Homeschool. They are short readings that the student reflects and records their thoughts on that day's passage. Lovely.

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This has been tricky for me, and I feel I've dropped the ball.

When we homeschooled, ds (high school) read his One Year Bible each day, privately, for his devotion. I was quite happy with that. At the same time (basically at the start of the day), dd and I went thru Leading Little Ones to God. We did not do the hymns. We used this for K and first grade, then did Little Visits With God for part of first and for second grade. We tried another book later, but it involved writing things down, and that was a huge turn-off for dd.

 

She got a NIrV bible, and began reading that on her own in 4th grade, but we really didn't do a solid devotional time.

 

Now she's out of the habit, and we aren't really praying together much, either--she asked to pray alone at night instead of doing prayers together. I think she felt self-conscious. It's a bit of a struggle for me--I want to stay connected, but she is developing some independence in her spiritual life, which is necessary and good, yet kinda leaves me feeling I'm not doing enough.

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We do short morning devotions to start our school days, but ds 8 does not do devotions on his own yet. I try to use children's devotion books that have discussion questions or pictures for him to reflect on so I know I'm not just reading a story he does not understand. I also think that it is great for parents to model prayer aloud for their children....not prayer that has to be on your knees, or uses big, fancy, "grown up" language....but praising God for little things in your life that your child can relate to and making prayer requests your child understands. My son says the most beautiful prayers as he has learned to just talk from his heart. (We also end our day with prayer)

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Dd(6) reads on her own a chapter (or part of a chapter, if it's long) in her Bible (this one, NIrV) and writes down a verse she likes or draws a picture of what it's about. She does this every morning as part of her morning routine along with getting dressed, making her bed, brushing her hair, etc.

 

At night we read a Bible story together as a family from the DK Illustrated Family Bible.

 

We also study the Bible during our school day; we're kicking off the year with How to Study Your Bible for Kids (love it so far! it's a little ahead of her--probably better for 8-10 year olds; so we have to do it together--but it's still fun and is teaching her fantastic study skills), and when that's done we'll do God's Promises: Beginnings II, which will give her a broad overview of the whole Bible (and will be more independent).

 

Yep, lotsa Bible here, and I love it--a great balance between independent and family study, with fun projects and family time to boot. (And, er, true confession: very little prep time for me! :D )

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Our kids have morning prayers that they (try to) do -- they have a prayer area in their bedrooms (or they can use the family one), and they have a prayer book available to them. When they get up, they (ideally) go into the prayer area, light a candle, look at the pictures of Christ and some of the saints we have there to put them in a "heavenly" frame of mind, and say the Morning Prayers. The bulk of the ancient prayers they read/say are directly from Scripture, so in this way they both speak with God and learn Scripture at the same time. They love having something to do in worship, not just think/study. HTH!

Edited by milovaný
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1 minute per year of age, quiet time. Nonreaders just look at any Bible story books. Olders read Bibles, Daily Breads, etc. The older they get the more I require it be the Bible. Sometimes I allow them to do their AWANA Bible memory and workbooks during this time.

 

I like them to Bible read, journal, pray as they get older (10yoish). I just keep suggesting that. They eventually try it, but none of us (incl me) has ever kept journaling very long!

 

My oldest quit Bible reading when she graduated - altho she *tries* to keep it up; she has little discipline. My secondborn (17yo) reads on her own diligently and daily better than my dh and I! So results vary.

 

We also do a 15-30 min morning before-homeschool family devotion with me that has varied all over the place during the years. Then, we do a 10min Bible reading at the table after dinner with Dad. At dinner time, we all share a memorized (or paraphrased Bible verse and reference).

 

Lisa j

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