Kids Catechism - GCP

Discussion in 'Family Forum' started by Grant Jones, Aug 13, 2019.

  1. Grant Jones

    Grant Jones Puritan Board Junior

    Looking for some advise from more seasoned catechizers:detective:

    Currently, I have a 5yr. old who knows the first 70 kids catechism questions published by GCP. I also have a 2yr. old who knows the first 4. I also have another child on the way.

    I have always been a "think ahead" kind of guy. We basically review the newest learned questions every week day; no more than 10-12 per day and try to learn new ones if they are ready. We just keep the child's own pace. On the Lord's Day (weekly) we ask and review through all the currently known questions. Saturdays, that get a catechism break. This has worked great so far. However, in thinking of 3 children learning over 100 questions and trying to keep up with review, I am looking for practical advise on how others have handled catechizing multiple kids who know 50+ questions.

    Does it get easier to manage once they learn to read? I am not saying it has been hard. Actually it has been easy and such a blessing. However, I am looking for any modification tips for handling multiple kids that get 50+ under their belt.

    Hope that makes since.:detective:
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2019
  2. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Professor

    Our experience: We taught some from the Heidelberg and both Westminster catechisms, but didn't memorize them. We opted for Scripture memory instead. Our youngest is now 17, and as a family we have learned about 200 verses. The only organized work we've done is about five minutes of drills and practice around the dinner table most evenings, as a part of family devotions. We've been in no hurry, and have never pressured ourselves to learn a certain amount each year. We knew we had many years to work on them. We kept adding more once we mastered some, and over time we have learned our verses well.

    We never wrote them out, even once we all could read. It just didn't seem like it would help much. We'd read new ones from the Bible for a few times until we started to learn them, and then just correct each other from memory most of the time.

    One issue you may face with the Children's Catechism is that at some point your kids will age out of it. You may feel a need to leave it and move on to something more age-appropriate for older kids. One reason we chose Scripture over catechism was there were passages we could start on when the kids were still very young, but we never felt any of it was too babyish for adults. After all, it was Scripture. I'm not suggesting catechism memory is a bad choice, but I think suitability for all ages is an advantage of Scripture memory.
     
  3. B.L. McDonald

    B.L. McDonald Puritan Board Freshman

    For my children I started with a simplified Q&A catechism when they were younger and once I felt they "aged out of it" I transitioned to the regular catechism in modern language. I initially strove for the goal of memorization; however, eventually I became less concerned over whether or not they could provide the answers verbatim and instead I move on with new questions each week regardless with the hope that over time through repetition they will pick it all up.

    Currently, I take a harmonized approach where we cover two chapters from the confession and the associated catechism questions each week. Since both of my kids read now we cover the material out loud together so they can see the words and learn visually, etc. We spend a lot of time on Sunday going over the new material and during the week I review with each child when I come home from work.

    To reinforce the above we have audio cds with the catechism Q&A sung to music that we listen to in the car occasionally. My older child (10 y/o) has separate workbooks she uses to also reinforce the catechism questions.

    Additionally, we also use a family devotional by Starr Meade that is based on the Heidelberg Catechism, which we've found really well done and edifying.

    Overall my main strategy has been to familiarize my children with the ideas and concepts with the goal that they will comprehend the "big picture" first and that in the long run they be so familiar with everything from repetition over the years that the memorization part will take care of itself.
     

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