For this review, we received
- Teen Prasso Ministries Teaching Lessons - a 124-page spiral bound book.
- Teen Prasso Ministries Student Journal - a 187-page spiral bound book
For this review, I used the Teaching Lessons with Ballerina, and she worked in the student journal.
The Teaching Lessons book contains 13 lessons that correspond to the chapters in the student journal. Each lesson consists of
- a key verse
- a message goal
- a fictional story of two teenage boys who set out on a journey together
- a message section that helps apply the fictional story to real life
The Teaching Lessons book is designed for group teaching, but is easily adaptable to use in a family setting. I simply did the lessons one on one with Ballerina.
I think this would be ideal for a homeschool co-op class setting as well. The Teaching Lessons book also includes instructions for group discussion leaders, including a description of the role of a group discussion leader, tips for asking good discussion questions, and how to deal with a diverse group.
The Student Journal is my favorite part of what we received to review. Like I said above, each lesson from the teacher's book corresponds with a chapter in the student book. The Student Journal chapters consist of
- Six days of journal activities
- Questions for group discussion
The Introduction gives a good overview of the topic that chapter is dealing with. It's written TO the student and gives questions and thoughts for them to ponder as they work through the chapter.
The first five days of journal activities are daily Bible reading and questions. On these days the student is asked to read several verses and often has them write out a verse or two. Then there are questions for the student to answer based on what they've read. Usually the first question is "What do you learn about God from this verse(s)?" The rest of the questions aren't simple one-word answer questions either. These are deep questions that make them think. It even encourages them to write down any questions they have while they are going through the day's reading.
The sixth journal day is labeled "Rethink." It asks the student to go back through each of the previous 5 days and write down a verse or thought that was meaningful to them.
Ballerina completed the journal activities on her own for each of the six days of each chapter. Looking over her entries, I can tell that she really put time and thought into her answers.
Each chapter ends with a list of questions for group discussion. Again, these aren't simple one-word answer questions; these are really good open-ended questions for a quality discussion time. Each set of questions has a few questions with stars beside them; the instructions for group discussion leaders in the teacher's book states that these are more important questions and to focus on those if you are short on time. Because I was only using this with Ballerina, she and I went through the discussion questions together. If I were using this with a co-op class or other group, I could definitely see these questions getting the students engaged and interacting with what they had read and learned.
Studying my Bible using the Student Journal helped me develop a better relationship with God. I began to study my Bible more and realize how God uses me and is helping me in everyday life. The length of time needed to complete each day varied depending on how deep the topic was, but I never felt like it took too much of my time to complete it.
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