Kids learn at different paces, but there is an average age kids are developed enough to learn certain things. Infants and toddlers need repetition, songs and movement. Elementary kids are little sponges ready to take in whatever information is put in front of them. Middle schoolers want to know why things are the way they are; why we do things certain ways. High schoolers are testing boundaries, living their lives and trying to make a place, or a name, for themselves.
What does this mean to parents and teachers? We teach basic bible stories and that God loves us to our infants and toddlers through song, rhymes and movement. We teach elementary children all of the Bible stories. Get the facts into their minds. As middle schoolers, we teach them why God gave us these stories; what message did God want us to learn. This is where we focus on biblical principles. Then in high school, they have all the tools they need to answer questions for their lives. A party with alcohol? Gender identity? Little white lies? God has an answer for all of this right in the scripture. He gave us His word and His spirit. High schoolers are prepared to pull from their knowledge base to answer the questions for themselves and make wise choices.
Next week we will spend time on ways to present lessons to our elementary children so they learn who God is, to love God and share God. When our kids beg to invite their friends to bible class we know we have something amazing!