I’m not sure why I have waited until now to write about this, because this is a resource that I am HUGELY excited about. When the Big Picture Questions & Answers (BPQ&A) were unveiled, I was excited. Produced by the Gospel Project for Kids team, I thought that they may correlate to the Big Picture Questions in each session – they didn’t, but LifeWay Kids have since confirmed that the new cycle of Gospel Project will feature these questions. Yay!
Both myself and Dave, the other chilmindude, have written and taught curriculum addressing core theology – previously based off the Baptist Faith and Message 2000. This resource was a much more kid-friendly approach to tackle many of the same core concepts. Before you go any further, I’d encourage you to visit this webpage and browse through the content – it’s really cool and there are even free downloads provided!
My journey with this content is pretty cool – when I first saw it highlighted in an email I loved it, and this was before the web page existed and the downloads were available. I contacted the Gospel Project team to see if I could have permission to print the posters to fit roughly 3 x 4 feet frames we had at church – they gave me permission and they were printed and installed right at our entry ways to both preschool and elementary classes. I liked this because I felt like it showcased to our families what we were trying to teach the kids, over the three years of each Gospel Project cycle this is what they should be hearing. It would provide a good snapshot of our ministry as new families were welcomed in too. So indirectly, it was my vision for our kids and preschoolers. However, that just didn’t feel like enough.
I was wrestling with what to teach our elementary students on Wednesday nights, and then it hit me that my passion for this product could turn into a really cool series. So that’s exactly what I did. 76 questions split into 44 lessons that will take me through next fall, with a break for summer. Two lessons in and I am loving it. I plan to share a little more of what that looks like in a later post.
One main criticism I had of the BPQ&A is the lack of supporting scriptures. Now, I do believe the answers are sound, correct, and based on God’s Word. But, these questions and answers were designed to be learned by rote, which I’m not hugely a fan of, what strength do they have if they can’t be easily and directly tied back to scripture, or if the child hasn’t discussed/wrestled/explored these questions, and answers, for themself? The focus of my midweek lessons is to do exactly that – dive into scripture to find support for the sound answers provided, and then give the kids avenues to discuss the questions and answers in small groups – it has been a blast.
A hugely exciting development for me, is that upon sharing my thoughts about how this could be improved, I was given the opportunity to jump in on the project myself. It is a hugely exciting opportunity for me to contribute to something that could be used nationwide in children’s ministries. So, I spent several hours on Friday morning diving into the Bible and looking for evidence supporting the answers given for the “God” questions, and it was a blast. I’m excited to continue this over the coming weeks.
So, this post was a little snapshot of my interactions with this resource, and I fully intend to create several posts on this topic – some highlighting uses for the resource itself that families could adopt, and some sharing my process of writing and teaching this content. It has thus far provided the basis for some excellent curriculum and lessons!
Be sure to check it out, download the freebies and browse the website. A really cool tool indeed!
– Jared Simpson