Bible lessons: the most important lessons. We've incorporated them into our early years homeschool for several years now, so as we begin formal lessons in the fall, I know that I want this time to feel different for Miss H. I want her to feel the importance of these lessons and that she's being entrusted with something big: real Bible passages instead of Bible storybooks.
I've spent some time poring over Home Education to see what Charlotte Mason's recommendations are for formal lessons. While I am positive that Charlotte Mason had much more to say about Bible lessons in her other writings, I am solely focusing on her fist volume now. You can find the booklist I made based off of Home Education, and other posts in this series, here.
"The method of such lessons is very simple. Read aloud to the children a few verses covering if possible, an episode. Read reverently, carefully, and with just expression. Then require the children to narrate what they have listened to as nearly as possible in the words of the Bible." Home Education, page 251
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The quote above is what Charlotte Mason called Method of Bible Lessons. In addition to reading straight from the Bible, she recommended using Bible commentaries for these lessons. She specifically recommended these by Canon Peterson Smyth, although some people immediately reject them because they discuss the possibility of old earth creationism. But, because of the passage below, I decided to seek out a more modern Bible commentary:
"It is quite well to bring before children, in the course of their Bible readings, whatever new light modern research puts in our way; the more we can help them in this way, the more vivid and real will Bible teaching become to them." Home Education, page 250
I chose the MacArthur Bible Commentary for this reason.
Charlotte Mason also said that children should know many stories from the Old Testament, and a Gospel or two by the time they are nine.
"By nine they should have read the simple (and suitable) narrative portions of the Old Testament, and, say, two of the gospels." Home Education, page 248
Because the heart of our faith is in Jesus, I think we will put a little more emphasis on the new Testament, reading an entire Gospel this year.
Home Education Curriculum: Bible
From the Bible
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible- This was published in the 1600's, so it is definitely not modern!
J Paterson Smyth's Bible Commentaries, available here.
John Macarthur's Bible Commentary- This is the modern commentary that we will use. We'll from the others as well since they're in the public domain.
Not all of the Bible Commentary will be interesting and appropriate for a six-year-old, but I am personally excited about all that I'll learn through it!
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