It’s never too early to teach covenant children their catechism and their church history. It is essentially part of their family history as members of the covenant community. One of the ways to teach young children is to introduce them to men and women who have shown through their lives and their works how great and good God is throughout all times and all places.
Banner Board Books
by Rebecca Van Doodewaard
Here is a new series of richly illustrated board books for young children. The first four volumes in this series will introduce your little people to a woman who made her home a place to serve others, a man who crossed the ocean to preach the Gospel, a doctor who became a preacher, and a woman who started a book ministry for pastors.
Each book is short and sweet with just enough text and illustrations to hold minute attention spans. What’s more, the sturdy board pages are ideal for curious little hands. This is, by far, the best set for the smallest members in the family.
RECOMMENDED FOR: Ages 1-3
Church History ABCs and Reformation ABCs
by Stephen Nichols
Written by the host of 5 Minutes in Church History, Stephen Nichols has simplified many of the key figures in church history and the Reformation. In fact, children learn about people, places or things in church history for each of all the 26 letters of the English alphabet!
There are a lot of funny elements in each of the book which makes it memorable for children. More information is included in the latter pages for the teacher/parent.
RECOMMENDED FOR: Ages 4-8
Everyone A Child Should Know
by Clare Heath-Whyte
With 52 stories for each week of the year, Everyone A Child Should Know will introduce young children to different men and women from all walks of life. Children will learn about missionaries, writers, reformers, politicians, and many others. And because it all comes in just one volume, it is most certainly a good buy!
The book covers the following people: Brother Andrew; Augustine; Gladys Aylward; Johann Sebastian Bach; Thomas Barnardo; Corrie ten Boom; William and Catherine Booth; Anne Bradstreet; John Bunyan; John Calvin; William Carey; Amy Carmichael; George Washington Carver; John Chrysostom; Fanny Crosby; Joni Eareckson Tada; Edward VI; Jim and Elisabeth Elliott; Billy Graham; Argula von Grumbach; Mary Jones; Adoniram Judson; John Knox; C. S. Lewis; Eric Liddell; Katie Luther; Martin Luther; Dwight L. Moody; Hannah More; George Mueller; John Newton; Florence Nightingale; Rosa Parks; Patrick; Robert Raikes; Rembrandt; Selina, Countess of Huntingdon; Lord Shaftesbury; Mary Slessor; Charles Spurgeon; C. T. Studd; Hudson Taylor; Lilias Trotter; William Tyndale; Charles Wesley; John Wesley; Susanna Wesley; George Whitefield; William Wilberforce; Richard Wurmbrand; John Wycliffe; Katharina Zell.
RECOMMENDED FOR: Ages 4-8
Christian Biographies for Young Readers
by Simonetta Carr
Simonetta Carr, who is a homeschooling mom herself, has done a great service to many Christian families by introducing many important and other little-known men and women in church history through her ever expanding series called Christian Biographies for Young Readers.
Young readers will not only learn about the giants like John Calvin, John Owen, Athanasius, or Augustine. But they will also discover many things about Peter Martyr Vermigli, Lady Jane Grey, B. B. Warfield, and so many others.
Each book is a delightful and is packed with beautiful illustrations and pictures that will keep elementary-aged readers (and their parents) thoroughly engaged. These stories are worth remembering and worth repeating for many years. And I love that I always learn something new after I read Carr’s biographies.
RECOMMENDED FOR: Ages 6-8 (Read to me); Ages 8-12 (Read by myself)
A Colorful Past: A Coloring Book of Church History
by William Boekestein
Pastor William Boekestein is an advocate for teaching church history to children. He has written a story book on the Canons of Dort and the Heidelberg Catechism. So having A Colorful Past: A Coloring Book of Church History is another welcome addition. The coloring book is “designed to introduce to children (and their older friends and family members) some of the most important characters of church history, focusing on at least one person per century. This method leaves out dozens of important people (there are no unimportant people in God’s church). But, hopefully, the use of this basic timeline will illustrate how God has woven these deeply flawed characters, and many more like them, into a single living story. And this story is not over. By coloring these pages and reflecting on these words, children might better see themselves as part of God’s story.”
The illustrations may appear plain, but the content for each character is well worth your time and money. Each page includes perforation for easy removable. It would be a wonderful addition to any Christian home or homeschool program.
I love that scholars like Thomas Aquinas are included. As well as preachers and theologians like William Perkins, Matthew Henry, Abraham Kuyper, and my favorite bachelor, J. Gresham Machen.
RECOMMENDED FOR: Ages 3 and up
May these stories from church history become real for our children. May they know these men and women at a young age. May they also know that God whom these men and women serve. And may they find themselves in God’s big story:
We will not hide them from their children,Psalm 78:4 (ESV)
but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
and the wonders that he has done.