The New City Catechism for Kids
Cat-eh-kism: difficult to say, difficult to spell
A catechism is a method of learning Biblical truth in the manner of question and answer. When I first learned about this I was somewhat sceptical: I didn’t think it was particularly bad but it seemed somewhat like teaching things without explaining what the things meant – I grew up in a church where we said the Nicene Creed every week and I can still happily repeat it (pretty nearly) correctly but I had no idea what half of it meant. It was a think I said not a thing I understood.
That is a very real danger with catesizing but the New City Catechism has worked hard to overcome that by producing a curriculum to help learn the Q&A and to explain the meaning of them and to show the Biblical basis for each answer! Let me break it down for you:
- 52 Q&A’s so it can be learnt/taught one a week for a year
- Cute little kids book for young readers to browse through
- An app that helps you learn it – including songs
- Curriculum includes prayer, activities, discussion, application and link to a Bible passage
- Simple funky illustrations to jog the memory
I’ve had a look at their sample chapters of the curriculum and it looks great as something a family can work through together as a devotional time each week and useful as a starter for a Sunday School plan. I particularly liked the instruction to “mix and match the activities in the lesson to fit your time frame” (an idea this blog strongly promotes!), the inclusion of a leaders prayer for prep time (something I am too prone to forget!) and a “Some questions that might arise include:” section.
Two important things to note:
- It is definitely aimed at older kids – lots of the activities are reading/writing based and the language of the answers is quite grown up. Younger children may well be able to learn the catechism with the help of songs but I’d leave teaching it until 8-ish or able to read and write fairly well.
- It is definitely written for kids who already know the Bible well and can call Biblical events to mind to answer questions and are used to looking through a Bible.
If you’re interested have a look at their website.