Thursday, July 31, 2014

Extra Helps #6 - Buying Or Making Bible Materials?

Buy Bible Lesson Materials or Make Your Own Bible Lesson Materials?  There are advantages to both sides of this question. Here are a few points to ponder:
  • Buying Bible Lesson Materials 
    • Positive: This way certainly is easy! The elders or a few good brethren select several examples of Bible booklets, maybe add a few packages of extra aids such as flannelgraph or large pictures and simply choose the best that is offered.
    • Positive: The lesson materials are usually written by grades or ages of the students, so the material is age appropriate.
    • Positive: Material may be purchased in bulk at (almost) the last minute and receive the order quickly.
    • Negative: The cost may be very expensive.  Many booklets are purchased, one for each student and, perhaps, a few more for visitors or lost books. Children's handbooks may be as much as $4-$6 a book, teacher's guide runs around $10, resource packets are $13-15 each, and CD's and teaching pictures are nearly $20 a package.
    • Negative: The material can be extremely confining and inflexible. Materials may be written so generically that little doctrine is taught.
  • Making Your Own Bible Lesson Materials
    • Positive: By creating your own Bible material, the Bible teacher can design the material, so that the lessons may be written for each individual class, taking into consideration the age, knowledge level of the students, and is able to emphasize the points that the Bible teacher finds important.
    • Positive: Cost can be extremely low. Construction paper, crayons, glue and scissors are the mainstays of creating Bible projects that students take home. Special projects may use accumulative treasure (some may call trash) as the highlight of that day's lesson, for example, shiny paper, paper rolls, small paper cups, real sticks or twigs, etc.
    • Positive: Doctrine may be taught without fear of insult or neglect. Children may be firmly grounded in the Truth at an early age.
    • Negative: Creating anything takes time, and Bible lesson material is no exception. Bible teachers must be prepared, dedicated, and willing, making sure that there will always be "enough" for all students.