How to Teach Your Kids to Read the Bible

How to Teach Your Kids to Read the Bible

by: Tess Picone

How can I teach my kids to read the Bible?” 

 

Maybe this is a question that has been circulating in your head. Or maybe it’s a question you have been asked by a new parent. Either way, it’s a tricky question to answer! There is no one right way to teach your kids how to read the Bible. But it’s an important question, because it’s only by reading the Bible that your children will come to know who God is and see how much He loves them. 

 

Only reading the Bible will allow your children to know God and His love for them | TDGC

So, here are a few tips for those of you seeking to make faithful disciples of your children. 

 

Toddlers (ages two to five)

 

At this age, the best thing you can do is read the Bible out loud to your children. By reading through whole books of the Bible with them, you will begin introducing them to God’s big story. You will be modeling to your children that the Bible is a book meant to be read. Additionally, you will be setting your children upon the firm foundation of God’s Word and welcoming gospel conversations into your home. 

 

While reading aloud, try to use big facial expressions and dramatic inflections of your voice to show them how exciting God’s Word is. Through this you are teaching your children why they should read the Bible—because God’s story is the greatest story ever! 

 

Additionally, by reading the Bible out loud to your children you are exposing them to the language of the Bible. This is important because from the ages of two to three, your children’s vocabulary increases from around 200 words to upwards of 1,500 words. Therefore, by reading the Bible out loud, your children’s vocabulary will include words like grace, forgiveness, love, and mercy. Spend some time defining these words for them. By doing so, you will introduce them to the key concepts of the gospel—and teach them why the gospel changes everything.

 

Teaching your children how to read the Bible begins with modeling to them why they should read the Bible. Your joy and excitement as you read the Bible out loud and your patience as you define new words will go a long way in teaching them how to read the Bible. 

 

In-betweens (ages six to twelve) 

 

As your children get older and learn how to read for themselves, you can begin teaching them how to study the Bible for themselves. The goal is that one day your children will be able to take the truths of the Bible and apply it to their everyday life—all on their own. 

 

So start by setting a plan. First, choose a time that works with your family to sit down and study the Bible together. Again, be realistic. This time you set aside to study the Bible can be flexible, and it doesn’t have to be long. Second, choose part of the Bible to study together—this can be an entire book, a passage, a psalm, etc. The book of John is a great place to start. Try studying whole books of the Bible over time with your children—working through them one passage at a time. 

 

While there are many study methods you can use to study the Bible with your children, simply asking them questions can be most effective. A big part of teaching your children how to study the Bible is teaching them how to ask good questions—and answering (to the best of your ability) any questions they may have. This will help build a habit in your children to interact with Scripture and read the Bible actively. 

 

Teaching your children to study the Bible means teaching them to ask good questions | TDGC

With younger elementary-age children, focus on asking questions about the content of the text. Think of questions like “who,” “what,” “when,” and “where.” This will help grow their Bible knowledge. 

 

Then, as your children advance into the upper elementary years, you can begin asking them questions focused on the meaning and implications of the passage. Some good questions to ask could include, “What does this teach us about God? What does this teach us about Jesus or salvation? What does this teach you about yourself?” 

 

These questions will also help your children begin to think through the application of the passage. This may not come naturally to your children, so be patient and help guide them through it. Work with them to figure out how this passage changes how they should act, think, or feel. Remind your children of what you both discussed together throughout the day or week to come, holding them accountable to God’s Word. 

 

Showing an ongoing interest in Scripture and regularly communing in God’s Word will help encourage your children to keep reading the Bible. Sometimes ten or fifteen minutes is all you need to make disciples of your children to know and love God and His Word. By reading the Bible, your children will come to know who God is and see how much He loves them.

 

Showing an interest in reading God’s Word will encourage your children to read the Bible | TDGC

Mentioned Products

Together Toward Jesus | Bundle

Together Toward Jesus | Family Prayer Calendar (2024-2025 Academic year)

Together Toward Jesus | Family Prayer Cards

Jesus Makes Me New Family Devotional

Gospel Conversations for Kids Card Set

My Scripture Workbook

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