Well, it seems like all I'm able to manage this month are my reviews. But I am making progress on the unpacking! I have gone through about 98% of the boxes in our garage, with just about 10 more to go. I have been purging like crazy---so much that we can't fit it all in our trash can! There is something very freeing about it, I must say. My next big task after going through the last of the boxes is to set up our school/craft/guest room. My husband just re-did the closet to house my craft supplies. Now I need to weed out the things I no longer use and organize it! I hope to finish this by this Saturday. Next week, I hope to tackle the last few areas in the house, remove the empty boxes and take a breather before we start packing for our trip! And now on to the review!
Product Reviewed: Artists and Authors by Lorrie Flem
This is a 5.5" spiral-bound softcover little book that is meant to fit easily in a purse or bag to take on the go with you. In it are short little devotionals that you can use to spark conversations with your kids. On each page is a space for your kids to draw their responses to the lesson. Each week focuses on one character trait. There are also lessons on the fruit of the Spirit, the 10 Commandments, and pages that correspond with various holidays. In all, there are 42 weeks of lessons, 5 days per week. That's a lot of opportunities to build into your children!
Publisher: Eternal Encouragement
Age Range: geared for 4-7 year olds or older kids who prefer drawing to writing
Parental Preparation: Very minimal. A brief "How to Use This Book" gives suggestions on how to make the most of the book. How We Used It: I haven't been able to actually use it with my kids yet, but I hope to be able to do so with Jonathan (and possibly Anah) soon. I think my older kids are a little beyond it, but my little ones may find it just their speed. I plan to do a page a day with them, although I may actually have them draw on another piece of paper or perhaps even a composition book. That way, I can also write his thoughts along with it. This will be a wonderful way to begin teaching them how to journal their thoughts. What We Liked:
- The prompts and starters are a great way to plant small seeds of truth into their lives.
- The lessons are practical, short and to the point. Just right for little ones.
- They easily can springboard into more meaningful conversations that you can tailor into the lives of your particular children. If you don't know what to talk about, this book gives you plenty of ideas. I plan to skip around and pick the topics that are most important to us at the moment.
- I like that we can spend one week on a topic--or more, if I think it is necessary. It can also be a supplement to other character-building programs.
What I'd Modify:
- The space may be a little small to draw on for little ones. It is nice to have something portable, and the small size may not be an issue for older kids. But like I said, for my kids, I think I may have them draw on a larger piece of paper.
- Some of the drawing prompts are not very meaningful or a little abstract for some of the really young ones. However, if I am having them draw on a separate sheet of paper, I can easily adapt the ideas.
- I wish there were more Scripture references. Aside from the Fruit of the Spirit or 10 Commandments, there were a few sprinkled here and there. Although there was nothing objectionable, it would be nice to be able to base it on the Word.
Overall Summary: I do like the concept of this book and how it can springboard into teaching my kids journaling. At first, the title of the book suggested that it was an art program, but I think it's more of a discipleship tool. You can use it as much or as little as you want. I think we will probably use it in small unit studies on character, woven into our Bible lessons. If your kids are 7 and older and are able to write, Lorrie has a similar volume, Authors and Artists.
Lorrie is generously offering one of these books on her site. You can sign up on this page on her website...and please let her know you heard it from me!
Disclaimer: I received a copy of Artists and Authors at no charge in exchange for my honest opinion. All thoughts are my own.