When I was a Children’s Pastor I hated when kids brought Bible storybooks to church. We were teaching the Bible, learning Bible verses and going through passages of Bibles and kids would be searching through their baby Bible book to find the story of Elijah calling down fire from heaven!
I am still a big advocate of kids having and knowing a real Bible. However, I think Bible storybooks are such a good tool and supplement for parents to lead their kids to Jesus. The The Big Picture Interactive Storybook Bible is now one of my new favorites.
I got it in the mail this week–as a review–so I’ve been doing a little research to see the background of the Bible. I wanna know if it’s just a repackage (which many of the kids’ books in Christian bookstores are), if it’s written by someone who knows kids (or is it just a kids’ version of an adult book), if it’s backed by people who are passionate about putting quality God-centered, Biblical truths in the hands of kids and families (or by someone who just realized they need to expand their kids’ line) and are they trying to push some theological message?
The Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook (seriously, that is a mouthful!) is part of the Gospel Project. The Gospel Project is a three year Bible Study for kids, students and adults that goes through the Bible focusing on the Gospel–on Jesus. The curriculum is for Sunday Schools or small groups and includes giant maps, worship music, take home papers, a parents app, videos and all sorts of cool things.
This storybook is apparently a supplement to the curriculum. It is also a perfect supplement to your bookshelf. The kids and I spent a half an hour at least playing with this book yesterday. Yes, playing with it.
The book begins with this great Parent Connection that explains what the Bible is and how it fits together. There are questions to start a conversation and even an activity to make a giant poster to use as you read this book together.
OK. So, already I love this! They aren’t giving you a book to put on your shelf or even just be on bedtime rotation. They are giving you the tools and assuming you are actually going to do this book together. And imagine if you did! What if you did dedicate a wall in your living room to a giant Bible poster? And you read a story every day (or a few days a week, let’s be real) and added pictures to this poster? Your kids would see the centrality of Scripture to your life. They couldn’t sit down to watch a television show without remembering God’s Word literally beside them!
Whew! I could jump up and down right now! I love this kind of stuff!
Where was I? Oh yeah…
Each story is only one page long. So, they aren’t super exciting and dramatic like the Jesus Storybook Bible. They are just nice one-page versions of the story. But each story ends with a “Christ Connection” to help point you and your kids to Jesus and his huge plan of salvation woven throughout the Bible. There is also a “big picture” question and answer–kind of your take away from the story.
Now, here’s the fun part. You can download the Augmented Reality app from B&H Kids on your phone or whatever-device and scan either the photo, icon or QR code on the page. If you scan the photo/icon (the icons are cool, too because they kinda categorize the story) a 3D image will pop up and a voice (Jenna Lucado) will tell a very short version of the story. It’s not interactive like the Fire Bible, but it’s pretty awesome.
If you scan the QR code (there’s not one on every page–probably only 20 in the whole book), there is a really fabulous video of the story. We watched three yesterday and were transfixed. One was told with paper bag puppets dressed as Moses and the Israelites (which was hilarious!) and the other was a CGI background with two live characters telling the story. I was really impressed.
So, basically you have a storybook that goes through the whole Bible (including all the prophets–stories I barely knew!), relating it back to Jesus, conversation starting questions, 3D art, audio narration and videos. Seriously, how cool is that?!
I’m really excited about this book. I think it could be a powerful way for your family to discover the Bible. And again, anytime my kids get excited about learning, listening or reading the Bible, then I’m all for it. As I write this, the kids are snuggled on the rug scanning videos and listening to God’s Word–what a gift!
I really think you should go ahead and put The Big Picture Interactive Storybook Bible on your Amazon wishlist along with The Big Picture of What God Has Always Wanted which is a companion to the Interactive Storybook–it’s a short picture book that tells the story of well, what God has always wanted—to have a relationship with us. There is a glossary of terms (Holy Spirit, Satan, Hell, Heaven, etc.) along with simple instructions for leading kids to salvation. It’s a nice introduction and concise re-telling of the Bible.
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