Monday, June 24, 2013

EDUCATION: Retelling Bible Story Techniques

Teachers use retelling techniques to help children with comprehension when reading. It helps them sequence the events and remember important details. The same technique will help them with Bible stories as well and will be instrumental in helping them understand law and gospel in each story. Remember that young kids don't need to be able to label what is law and gospel (they won't understand that concept anyway), they just need to be exposed to it. The teacher needs to understand it in each story and be able to let the kids know what Jesus does for us and why which is, in its simplest sense, law and gospel.

When helping kids learn about a Bible story have them read the story or tell it to them first. Then go through it again trying a different technique and having the kids help retell it.
  • Use puppets, props, masks, etc. and let the kids use them to help retell the story.
  • Retell the story leaving sections out for the kids to fill in verbally. 
  • Use "follow the yellow brick road" to help them tell the story step by step. Put pieces of yellow paper on the floor and have the kids tell the story while "walking" down the road.
  • Add body actions to the story so when kids retell, the actions will help them remember.
  • Pause while retelling to ask appropriate questions to reiterate important details and law/gospel.  
  • Let kids draw a picture while you tell the story and then use their picture to retell it.
  • Use a series of pictures to tell the story and let the kids retell it putting them in order. 

Remember, especially for young kids, a picture really is worth a thousand words!

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