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The Fruit of the Spirit 4 Kids Review by Tess HamreLinda Tansey
3307 Springridge Circle
Colorado Springs, CO 80906
When I saw the Fruit of the Spirit 4 Kids curriculum set from ABC Spirit I fell in love. Based on Galatians 5:22-23, this program helps parents and Sunday school teachers present the fruit of the Holy Spirit in a concrete way to children while teaching good character and values.
The Fruit of the Spirit 4 Kids curriculum set includes the full collection of stuffed animals as well as the board book, Meet the Fruits, the Be the Fruits workbook, and The Fruit of the Spirit 4 Kids Coloring & Activity Book.
The nine fruits of the Spirit are Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Goodness, Kindness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-control. Spirit, a white dove, with the help of his friends, grows these fruits in his garden. His friends are the nine fruits. I think of them as the Fruit Friends. They are:
- LOVE – the Apple Bear
- JOY – the Pineapple Hippo
- PEACE—the Pitaya Lion
- PATIENCE—the Orange Duck
- KINDNESS—the Watermelon Pig
- GOODNESS—the Grape Moose
- FAITHFULNESS—the Banana Giraffe
- GENTLENESS—the Strawberry Elephant
- SELF-CONTROL—the Coconut Bull
Meet the Fruits – board book
This children’s board book seems most appropriate for ages 5-6 but I think it can be used alone with younger children as an introduction to character development through the fruits of the spirit.
The book has 16 bright, colorful pages and is about 5 ½ by 7 ½ inches so it easily fits into a child’s hand. The pages depict outdoor country scenes. The cover shows the fruit animals in a farmer’s market type stand with a red barn in the background. Inside, readers find pictures of a haystack and another of fishing. The first few pages introduce Spirit and the Fruits and include the Galatians 5: 22-23 passage.
After these first pages, each fruit has its own page. The top of each of these pages begins with “Help the Spirit grow [name of fruit].” At the bottom of the page are two to four sentences with suggestions for how to grow the fruit. For example, “Help the Spirit grow Joy [sic] Be happy from the inside out. Have a great attitude. Smile often. Live, laugh and play.”
Be the Fruits –workbook
This workbook helps children to practice good character and values. This workbook can stand alone and does not require the board book. It includes over 100 stickers!
This 24-page workbook is perfect for encouraging children in grades K-3rd to practice the traits of the fruit. Children learn to be the fruits!
The first few pages introduce Sprit and name the nine fruits. Unlike the board book, however, it does not include the passage from Galatians 5.
Starting with page five and going through page thirteen we meet each animal fruit friend. The top of the page has a quote bubble from the friend. Love – the Apple Bear says “Greetings!” while Patience - the Orange Bear asks, “How’s it going?” and Faithfulness – the Mango Giraffe exclaims “Pleasure to meet you!”
The page, written in first person, names the fruit and describes the character traits and behaviors of that fruit. For example, “I am the fruit that SPIRIT grows that is very tender and calm. I am very humble. I know how to listen with my heart.”
Students also find a Practice Box with a list of activities to practice the fruit. There is a checkbox for each item. For Gentleness, the student will practice “Being Careful not to break things,” and to grow Goodness they will practice “Understanding others” and “being a friend to someone who is having a bad day.”
After completing each fruit page, the student places the reward sticker in the right place.
Following the individual fruit pages, the workbook reviews the actions that match each fruit. This two-page spread asks students to place a sticker next to the action that best matches each fruit. The answers are written upside down in a smaller font in the lower right corner.
Students will evaluate themselves and look for good character and values in others as well as complete the Fruit of the Spirit Tree with stickers over the last few pages. The very last page is a certificate of completion.
Coloring & Activity Book
With a cover matching the board book and including many pages from the book, this Coloring & Activity Book is the perfect companion for the book, Meet the Fruits! In addition to the coloring pages of scenes from the book there are coloring pages for each of the Fruits and activities such as a word scramble, color by number, draw a face, mazes and more.
These adorable stuffed animals are 100% polyester. Each one has embroidered facial features so there are no small parts like beads or buttons that can fall off. They are 7 inches in height and can be spot cleaned making them ideal for both younger children and elementary students working through the curriculum. I like that they are soft and squeezable with bright colors.
The head and legs (or wings in the case of Orange Duck) are clearly recognizable as the animal while the body is the fruit. Across each fruit is the name of the fruit of spirit so the Pineapple Hippo has Joy stitched across the front of the pineapple.
How we are using The Fruit of the Spirit 4 Kids
We call this our Fruit Bible Study and we work on it two to three times a week. We are also working on memorizing Galatians 5:22-23 and adding in a verse for each fruit.
We are following this type of pattern:
Day 1 – Read through the Meet the Fruits book and read Galatians 5:22:23. Read the page for the fruit in the workbook and discuss activities for practicing.
Day 2 - work on Bible memorization. This is not included in the curriculum, but I include reading verses from the Bible about the fruit such as reading 1 Corinthians 13 about love or for peace 1 Peter 5:7 and James 3:18.
Day 3 – Do a page or two from the Coloring & Activity Book. Work on Bible memorization and discuss what we have completed from the practice box.
Day 4 – work on Bible memorization and finish the workbook page for the fruit.
On days that we are not specifically using the materials, I find opportunities while watching television or reading books together to stop and talk about what the characters are doing and if they are exhibiting fruits or what they should do differently. We also talk about opportunities we have to “be the fruit” to our family and friends.
We are working through this slowly and have paused between fruits to really work on specific character traits and values. I use the stuffed animal as a reward and a reminder of the fruit that we have worked hard to grow.
I love these materials for introducing the fruits of the spirit to my daughter and to use these fruits to work on character development and strong Christian values. We have fun together and we both grow our fruit.
I recommend these materials for both Sunday School programs and homeschooling families. The stuffed animals also make a great gift idea.
-Product review by Tess Hamre, Single Product Reviews Manager, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November 2019