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Teens and Bible reading plan?


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14yo and 16yo have listened to me read the Bible or done devotions with me for years. I'm thinking the next step would be to get them reading a little bit on their own in the morning before school. I still have reading plans from when their older brother was homeschooled, but since they are in PS there is limited time. I am more concerned for 14yo dd; in her case, it might be better if it were very concrete, on-topic, relevant, kwim? Does anyone have any resources to recommend?

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I imagine morning time before public school is very very limited. Why not just work on whole books in bite size pieces? Maybe alternate gospels with old testament. Mark,then Ruth, Matthew, Tobit, then the 4 books of Kingdoms (which I think are riveting and hard not to just read like a novel). Short, interesting, exciting, easy to apply to life.

 

I guess I am somewhat biased against bible reading plans that skip all over. I think they are heavily limiting.

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I'm doing a survey through the Bible with my teens.  We are basically going from one book to the next and reading the more well-known stories from each book.  I go through the book ahead of time, pick what chapters/verses I want them to read and then I write them on a sticky.  They read through the chapters/verses independently and then we recap together.

 

That could be one idea...

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I guess I am somewhat biased against bible reading plans that skip all over. I think they are heavily limiting.

 

Yeah, I really, really don't like those.  That's what we did when we were kids and it was confusing...and I had no sense of a timeline.

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At those ages, I only had mine reading through their Bibles, front to back, constantly.  Then, at different times, we went through a variety of books related to Bible study, etc., doing most of them as a group.

 

I suppose you could have her reading a little every day and ask her to write something about what she's read once a week or so.  I'm not sure what you mean by "concrete, on-topic, relevant".  Are you wanting lesson plans or something like that?  You might get more responses if you could explain a little more ....   :)

Well, I guess I'm just wondering where to start. Like having her read through Leviticus would not be very relevant to her day-to-day life, kwim? Bible-reading plans tend to skip around. I've thought James is short and on-point, but it is the most works-oriented book in the New Testament, which might be less than encouraging.

 

Which book would you start with? One of the gospels? Proverbs? Or do you think having a devotional to go along would be most effective for short, independent study time?

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The advice frequently heard in our church is that the gospels should be read Mark, Matthew, Luke, then John for a beginner. John being the most.. High level, theoretical. Mark being shortest and most approachable. Obviously your kids have heard them before (hopefully all the way through?) But reading on one's own is a bit different. Acts is really great to follow the gospels with. I read it to my littles every summer after Pascha/Easter. After that she has ownership of the NT and can fill in the smaller books.

 

Ruth and Tobit are three books I have seen most frequently used for middle school bible study because they are dramatic and unusual. The kids really latch on and are encouraged to read more to find more that is interesting and relevant to them.

 

If your kids read cover to cover for only 5-10 minutes each morning, they could drown in the fist part of the OT, being stuck there most of the year. I couldn't imagine asking a kid to do that. I think it would have the opposite of the desired effect.

 

Anyway I didn't mean to come back and say the same thing again, but just that I really was thinking about what would be interesting and encouraging. I am not sure it matters immensely exactly where you start as long as you are willing to be flexible, but also just do it :)

 

Edit: Was talking about this with DH and he reminded me that Tobit might not be your bible, and that the four books of Kingdoms would be 1 & 2 Samuel and 1&2 Kings Oops :) Sorry.

Edited by CadenceSophia
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I don't really know where you'd have her start.  I had my kids read through the OT and the NT at the same time.  So they would read however much in the OT, and then flip over to the NT and read however much there.  Thus, they were constantly going through both the OT and the NT.  I still do the same, only I include the Psalms and Proverbs in my reading, too.  You could design it any way you wanted according to what you think might interest her, I guess.

 

One thing that seemed to pull everything together for us was including part of a sermon by 2 specific pastors every day.  At first, we only listened.  Eventually we discussed and applied.  The sermons were nice because we were all at different spots in our daily reading, but we did the sermons together. 

 

I never liked devotionals, fwiw.  ymmv, of course.

 

I hope you find something that works for her. 

I enjoyed reading about how things work in your house!

 

Thanks for the well wishes.

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You guys are helping me think this through, thanks! I'm tentatively thinking of a sequence such as Mark, Ruth, Acts, Proverbs for dd.

 

The One Year Bible Online plan, at his own pace, might work well for ds. Thanks for all the ideas.

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I've generally used the daily reading scedual from the Book of Common Prayer (the Canadian one - I think the American one changed the readings after the last update.)

 

It's designed for going through the whole Bible, mostly in order, but cutting out sections like the begats and such - it is meant to be suitable for out loud reading.  There are a few places where it skips around a bit to give reading that are focused on the time of year.  The readings aren't too long.

 

Here's a link to the schedule, if you'd like to look at it.  It's organized according to the liturgical calendar, with Advent as the beginning of the year.

 

There is also a scheme in the section that contains the psalms that goes through the lot about once a month at morning and evening, though there is a slower version as well.

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Kathy, 

 

I actually think your best option if you want a reading plan that they can fit in before school is to have them read 1 chapter or 1/2 chapter of a book of the Bible each day and then keep a journal.

Ideas for journaling:

  • start the morning with a thankfulness list (3-5 things per day)
  • record any prayers or concerns
  • record a verse that stuck out to them from the reading
  • answer any of these questions: what does this passage reveal about who God is? What does this passage reveal about how God works? Does this passage reveal a promise, warning, rebuke, truth, prophecy from God? Is there something I need to change in my life, thinking, actions based on the truths in this passage?

Other options: 

 

I love Precepts because it helps the student learn to really dig into Bible study. The original Precepts studies can be time consuming (30 min/day) but the newer in-and-out series is designed for folks who need just that -- to get in and out of the Word more quickly. You can choose any book of the Bible and just start studying

 

These two sites focus on different books of the Bible, with some online helps. She Reads Truth and Women Living Well. There are plenty of other online Bible studies as well.  Oops. Just now see that this is for your ds and dd. Both are geared toward women those WomenLivingWell has a man's version of the studies. :)  

 

Word of Life has devotionals on the same topic for the whole family. These provide the verse, a short devo and some response. We've used them and they are a good devotional that go systematically through books of the Bible rather than hopping around. 

 

My church -- First Baptist Jacksonville -- has a free devotional based on books of the Bible. Right now, we're in Joshua and next we'll do Judges and Ruth and then move into a New Testament book. These are free to download. Go to Resources at the bottom and then you can scroll down to Personal Study Guide. My teen and my 6th grader use this. 

 

I have a reading plan called 100 Days with Christ that walks chronologically through the four gospels. I'll be blogging about it once a week. The reading plan and journal are free, but it might be more reading than your kids can fit in before school. 

 

 

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We are using the Bible Road Trip and really enjoying it. DS14 and I read through the daily passage together, then he answers the questions about it and we discuss it.  If he needs help answering the question we do it together.

 

It is free and very well done.

 

https://www.thinkingkidsblog.org/bible-road-trip-books-of-the-law-year-one-index/

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