We recently had the opportunity to try the recently published Faith Builders Bible from Zonderkidz. The Faith Builders Bible ($24.99) is written for children ages 6 - 9. It features a durable, hardcover and is the New International Reader's Version.
I was excited to get the opportunity to see how this Bible was created to encourage children. The cover is very bright colored. The LEGOs will definitely draw any child's attention to this book. The difference is that there are limited pages inside the Bible with LEGO pictures on them. Throughout the Bible there are Block building challenges that help to emphasize verses that had just been read. But LEGOs are not featured on every page.
I was worried actually about the possibility that LEGO projects would take priority over our bible study. But even though LEGO are featured on the cover and on various pages throughout the Faith Builders Bible, LEGO does not overshadow the whole purpose of this book, which is a child friendly Bible. There are actually only 24 illustrations throughout the Bible. The pages though do not match up with the actual scriptures they are illustrating. Illustrations for Luke were in the Psalms. Other illustrations for scriptures from the New Testament were located in the Old Testament. This was a little confusing to the boys at first. But the full colored illustrations feature a scripture and a build from that scripture. This would help draw a child's attention to important scriptures for them to remember and keep in their minds and hearts.
The New International Reader's Version of the Bible is simply written, with modern English. It is based on the New International Version. But it has been written down much simpler for children and even adults that are learning to read or even learning English. It is even helpful for those who are reading the Bible for the first time. The Faith Builders Bible was a result of the process of making the Bible easier for kids to read. Right after the Book of the Bible page, there is a brief explanation of what the New International Reader's Version is.
Neither of these versions of the Bible are used by our family. So we used the Faith Builders Bible during our Bible Study time and compared it with our own copy of the Bible. We noticed several differences between our Bible and the Faith Builders Bible - New International Readers's Version. So this opened up discussion between us and the children about different interpretations as the Bible was being translated. Some differences were opened to interpretation and could change the meaning of the scripture and many were just the wording differences helping to make words smaller and easier to read.
The print on each pages is large enough for the kids to easily read, but not large enough to increase the number of pages and make it heavier for the smaller child to use. I really appreciated that for our sensory children. Title headings at the beginning of some chapters were helpful to let the children know what is coming up. But it also gave them the feeling like they were reading a chapter book.
Using the Faith Builders Bible the last few weeks has continued to show our children that there are varying beliefs. They have learned that the Bible is an important book that is needed to help them to continue building their faith and love in God. It might seem overwhelming because of its size, but is very friendly for them to read and learn with. Our children range in age of 8 to almost 16. Even our older kiddos enjoyed this version of the Bible.
Several members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew were given the opportunity to try out the Faith Builders Bible from Zonderkidz Publishing.