Here’s a post from a new blog called Beyond Teachable Moments, which offers best practices for Christian parents who want to prepare their children for a world that doesn’t always support Christian convictions – and that’s putting it mildly. In this post, the author explains how she is able to prepare her two boys for a pretty common objection to Christianity.
I think all kids, and adults, have a curiosity about where the Bible came from, how it was put together, and how it was passed down. That is why my husband and I wanted to teach our kids some of the basics about this topic early on in their lives. We have found our kids to be really receptive to this material.
[…]Do these differences in the gospel accounts mean that the disciples made up the story about Jesus, or that they are at least unreliable eyewitnesses, as some conclude? If the eyewitnesses to the gospel accounts can’t get their story straight, should we believe their testimony at all?
So the mom planned out an activity to teach her kids to defend against this objection: (how old do you think kids have to be for this to work?)
The gist of this activity is to set up a scenario where your kids act as eyewitnesses to an event, and then help them to discover that they each will remember and report on different aspects of that event.
There are many ways to do this activity. I chose to create my own scenario, which I detail below. You could alternatively have your kids, or one child and a different adult, watch a video clip together on YouTube or on a DVD. Just make sure to watch the clip on your own in advance so you that have the details straight in your own head first. Then ask similar pointed questions to the ones listed in the activity outlined below.
I arranged for our kids to meet me in the living room at an appointed time. I told them that I had something special to show them. I didn’t give them any further preparation.
Then I dressed up in a strange and elaborate costume. I put on various pieces of my kid’s dress up costumes (a hat, a mask, ponytails in my hair, a cape, a shirt with a picture on it, gloves, a scarf, and various things sticking out of my front and back pockets, and I had a stuffed animal tucked in somewhere to boot).
At the appointed time, I came into the room where my kids were seated and announced with a strange accent: “Welcome everyone. I am Mommy the Magnificent and I have a magic show to perform for you!”
I then explained how I was going to make something disappear in my magic hat. I put a small toy in my hat; I waved a fancy cloth over top of it that I had taken out of one of my pockets, turned around a bunch of times (mainly so they could see the back of my costume), and said some magic sounding words. I did some fancy dancing moves and made the toy disappear (by concealing it in my hand). I then bowed and left the room.
The kids were amused, but also confused.
I told the kids to stay where they were, and quickly took off all of my costume and hid it out of sight. I re-entered the room where my kids were bouncing off the walls, re-gathered them onto the couch and told them that that they were just eyewitnesses to what I had performed for them.
Then I asked: What is an eyewitness? (Answer: Someone who sees something with their own eyes. As they also heard something, our kids coined the term ‘earwitness’ as well!)
I told them that I was going to interview each of them to find out what they saw in my performance. I took them one by one into a different room where our conversation could not be overheard by their brother, and interviewed them individually. I told the one waiting to be interviewed to think hard about what he had just seen in preparation for his interview.
Click through to read how the kids responded. I don’t have any kids of my own, but I am reading this blog to see how it’s done. Each post is showing a completely new creative technique for teaching apologetics to these two young boys. If you have any techniques like this, post an example in the comments.
Do you think that it is worth it to have a stay-at-home mom doing these sorts of activities with kids? Do you think that a government-run daycare would do similar activities? What sort of policies should a liberty-minded government enact in order to free up mothers to stay home and nurture their children like this? Which political party do you think is pushing for those policies? Which party is trying to make it harder for moms to stay home and do these sorts of activities?