Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Jesus Book: Children's Book Review

Like many of you, we think it's important for our child to begin developing a relationship with Christ early and one of the best ways to begin this is through kid friendly books. The Jesus Book The Ultimate Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How Book by Stephan Elkins is a great resource for parents! I especially like how it's format brings to mind the W's in Writing, a teaching strategy used by teachers for years to help kids include all the important facts in their essays. As The Jesus Book shows, it's also a neat and orderly way to discuss who Jesus is with your child.

The W Questions in the The Jesus Book are divided up with colorful tabs:

Who is Jesus
What Jesus Did
What Jesus Thought
When it Happened
Where it Happened
Why it Happened
How it Happened

Each question has it's own section with several scripture references that answer that question. For example, in What Jesus Taught: He taught the Golden Rule, Matthew 7:12. This is then followed by explanation that young children can relate to, such as not taking away toys from others and that treating others well pleases Jesus.

The amount of text is perfect; it's written in kid friendly language with a colorful illustration that supports the message. It provides enough detail but ends before our 3 year old's attention wanders. It's a great tool to facilitate discussing Jesus with your child and good for a range of ages. We use it as a read aloud but early elementary kids could read it independently as a quiet reflection activity.

See it for yourself, view part of The Jesus Book online.

The Jesus Book is accompanied by a 30 song CD with over an hour of music on it. While the songs were well written and the music is acceptable but boring, it falls into predictable children's music with a chorus of children singing. A little more effort into the arrangment or different vocalists could've made this combination a home run. The CD became rather grating after awhile and my daughter lost interest after a few songs.

Without it, I'd have given this book a five star rating, with it I can only give it four since it really was a disappointing listen. I think it'd be better to package it without the CD and a lower publisher's price. I'd look at the CD as an extra bonus that might get used a little. The well written and thought out book is by far the better stand alone product.

Disclaimer: I am Thomas Nelson Book Reviewer and received my copy in return for reviewing it, and this post relates my own opinions and experience with it.

3 Friends Said:

Annette W. said...

Thanks for sharing! We are always on the lookout for ways to help Meghan, and soon Evan develop a relationship with Jesus!

How did you become a Thomas Nelson reviewer? Sometimes I wonder if I'd love something like that!

Silly Bus said...

It is a very nice and good post. Keep up the good work.

The Sunshine Crew said...

looks like a neat book. Lovely illustrations, too.

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