4-5 YEARS OLD: STORIES

Why this is important:

Stories help bring the Bible to life in a way that your child will know the people and events are real. 

What to do:

Find a good Bible storybook that works for your family and children. Children this age like to hear good stories over and over.  Find Bible storybooks that peak your child’s interest and imagination. Books with illustrations help keep a child’s attention.  An illustrated children’s Bible is a great place to start.  Use special voices to read stories, use visuals, act out the story, sing a song about the story, or have your child tell the story.

Once you have read a book or Bible story, ask your child, "What did you hear?", "What do you wonder?". You may ask these questions, and they may not have any response. That's okay! They may have questions, and you may not know the answers. That's okay too! Pause after you read and allow your child to have some quiet time thinking about what they have heard. It may be just a few seconds at this age. During the week, if you notice your child displaying one of the positive aspects of the story, try to recognize this by verbally praising the behavior.

MAKE THE MOST: 

Make the most of the time you already spend together by creating some routines in your daily life. Make sure your child knows first thing each morning they are loved. How can you bring joy and love to their morning each day? Make the most of the time you spend in the car. (Perhaps you want to make this a no screen zone). As you drive around town, talk to your child, share stories, ask questions, listen. Pay attention to what your child hears, your conversations, the music in the car. Spend time each day doing something your child loves. Even 15 minutes. Prioritize your bedtime routine. Bedtime may be the perfect time to add in your Bible Story & blessing your child. 

Obstacles:

Some children have trouble sitting still.  Keep the stories age-and-stage appropriate.  Identify the time of day that your child is most receptive to story time. Many children will do anything to extend bedtime and extend one on one time with a parent. 

Resource:

The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name by Sally Lloyd Jones and Jago

Spiritual Parenting: An Awakening for Today's Families, by Michelle Anthony

Becoming a Spiritually Healthy Family: Avoiding the 6 Dysfunctional Parenting Styles, by Michelle Anthony

5 Love Languages of Children, By Gary Chapman & Ross Campbell

I Promise It's True, by Houston and Karen Heflin