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Small Bible Book Summary Cards Review by Karen Waide

Bible Study Guide for All Ages
800-530-7995
P.O. Box 1343
Russellville, AR 72811
http://www.biblestudyguide.com

Several years ago, my older girls memorized the order of the books of the Bible throughout the school year. Along with learning the names, the curriculum we were using gave them a short, 1- to 2- sentence blurb about each book. At the time, I figured that was enough information for children who were five and six years old. Sadly, I didn’t think to review the order of the books after our school year was done. Now, four years later, the girls have a vague memory of where some of the books are found in the Bible, but they can’t recite them in order anymore, and they really don’t remember what each of the books was about. So, when I was given the opportunity to review the Small Bible Book Summary Cards from Bible Study Guide for All Ages, I was quite excited. Here was our opportunity for the older girls to not only regain this information, but to expand their knowledge of each book of the Bible, the most important book they will ever read. Additionally, my youngest children are getting a much more detailed introduction to the books of the Bible.

The Small Bible Book Summary Cards pack is just one of several products available from Bible Study Guide for All Ages. This company was started as one mother’s attempt to create a Bible curriculum that would help children (both her own and her church’s Bible class) learn and understand the Bible. It’s been almost 40 years since the first Bible guide was published by Mary Baker, and she has since been joined by her oldest son and others who have helped expand the curriculum. While the Bible Book Summary Cards are a part of the memory work section of the curriculum, they can also be used by themselves, which is the way we are using them.

The Bible Book Summary Cards are recommended for children in first grade and up. This pack of 67 cards includes an instruction card and one card for each of the 66 books of the Bible. They are available in three different sizes: small, medium, and large. We received the small cards, which are 4.5” x 6” in size, which is perfect for our family Bible time. They are also just the right size to fit in a larger purse or diaper bag to take along on outings if desired. The other two sizes are designed more for class use. The medium cards measure 8.5” x 11”, and the large cards measure 11” x 14” in size.

Each of these double-sided cards has colorful, cartoonish images on the front, and information about the book of the Bible on the reverse side. The images chosen help to illustrate the basic details shared on the back and are to be used as a quick, visual reminder about the knowledge learned. The name of the Bible book is only given on the back of the card. It is centered at the top for easy reference and then occasionally used in the information part of the card.

The illustrations are designed well, sometimes showing one main image which then works other details in, such as the picture for the book of Joshua that shows a huge Joshua brandishing a sword, standing on a map. He is situated to the east of the Jordan river, and there is a yellow dashed arrow that goes across the river into the land of Canaan. Then there is another arrow which goes from north to south. This helps the children to remember that Joshua led the Israelites across the Jordan river to conquer Canaan, first the middle part of the land, then south and north. Other cards have separate sections or images arranged on different points of the card. The Genesis card is divided into four sections. The top of the card has the word “Beginning” in large font surrounded by a nighttime sky. Then the bottom two-thirds of the card are vertically divided into three sections, representing the beginning (Adam and Eve & Noah), the middle (men living in tents & the three promises given to Abraham), and the end (Joseph going to Egypt) of Genesis.

The first paragraph on the back of the card, which is usually only one or two sentences long, gives a quick introduction of the book. The remainder of the paragraphs give more details about what the book is about. Sometimes only one extra paragraph is shared; other times, there are three or four short paragraphs of information. For instance, the Genesis card contains four paragraphs of information, the definition/introduction to the card, then a short description of the first part, middle part, and last part of Genesis. However, Song of Songs (otherwise known as Song of Solomon) only has one short paragraph explaining what the book is about.

At the bottom of the card, there are questions to help review the information presented. Depending upon the amount of information learned, there are between three and nine questions listed. The first question is always“What book of the Bible does this card represent?” The remainder of the questions will vary depending upon what information was shared on each card. These are fairly simple questions that can usually be answered with a word or phrase.

We have been using these cards as our nighttime Bible time. Each time I introduce a new card, I will show the children the picture on the front of the card and tell them the book of the Bible it represents. Then I read the information provided. The children take turns answering the questions. However, I don’t share a new card each night. Some nights are purely review nights where I will share some cards at random and have the children tell me what book the card represents. I then ask for one or two details about the book. I may prompt them using the questions if needed. Other times I will randomly lay the cards that we have learned on the bed and have them help put them in order. They are not allowed to look at the reverse side. They have to know what book it is only by looking at the picture. I don’t want to zing through the cards too fast, as I want them to retain the information and also memorize the order they belong in.

I couldn’t help but notice that the age recommendation for these cards is the age that my girls were when we were first memorizing the books of the Bible. It made me realize they could have learned a lot more information about each of the books at an earlier age. My younger two children, who are going into first and second grade, have been learning this information right along with their sisters, and they are remembering a significant amount of information. Funny enough, my son will be using the same curriculum we used several years ago, but now I have these Bible Book Summary Cards to help him learn a lot more than his sisters knew at that age.

These cards are a fun and ingenious way for children and adults to retain basic information about all the books of the Bible. The illustrations do a wonderful job capturing the important points, and just enough information is given for children to understand what the book is about. It is in no way meant to be an in-depth study of the Bible. But it is a wonderful introduction to what is found in each book of the Bible. A way to help make the Bible come alive for children.

- Product review by Karen Waide, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, September 2017

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