Friday, January 6, 2012

The Story Bible

The Story Bible, edited by Edward A. Engelbrecht and Gail E. Pawlitz, presents "130 Stories of God's Love." The book includes representations from Genesis to Revelation, each in concise two- to three-page stories. Key words are highlighted in the sidebar and defined in the Glossary at the back of the book. Each story also includes application prompts.
  • ASK: One to five questions encourage readers to interact with the text. These typically ensure comprehension.
  • DO: Activities range from discussion starters to crafts, memorization and trying new foods.
  • PRAY: This provides a short prayer related to the story, typically three sentences or less.
The illustrations showcase the talents of more than ten different artists. All feature bold colors, strong contrast and realistic details. Every story boasts at least one full-page, full-color illustration.

Additional features include a Preface and Introduction that detail the thought processes that went into the creation of this Bible as well as helpful tips for parents. The introduction includes guides for development and interest as well as reading strategies. This section is divided into three parts, based on age (Read to Me = 2 to 6; Read with Me = 5 to 8; Hear Me Read = 7 to 10). The Table of Contents sorts the stories chronologically and lists them by title and chapter. Bible references are provided both in the Table of Contents and the stories themselves.

What I Like: Most children's Bibles offer paraphrases and over-simplified texts, but this one is surprisingly reflective of Scripture! My husband and I (both holding Bible degrees) viewed it as an accurate contemporary translation, only abridged and illustrated. This makes sense since the text is derived from the ESV (English Standard Version) Bible. While paraphrases have their place and are quite helpful, especially with children, publications like this one offer an invaluable bridge between children's Bibles and regular Bibles. I like that it works for families whose children span various age ranges or developmental levels. We can read it together as a family and everyone gets something from it.

I also greatly appreciate the introductory matter. There parents learn that the text for this Bible was drafted while consulting both the Flesch-Kincaid Readability Formula and the Dolch and Fry Sight Word lists, both resources highly acclaimed by literacy teachers nationwide. This translates into an approachable text for early readers.

What I Dislike: Nothing.

Overall Rating: Excellent.

Age Appeal: According to the publisher, 3 and up. The introduction, however, offers instructions for children ages 2-10.

Publisher Info: Concordia Publishing House, 2011; ISBN: 0758619022; Hardback; 480 pages; $29.99

Special Info: The face of Jesus is pictured several times in this volume, both as a child and an adult.

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Anonymous said...

Cool! Thanks for reviewing this...I will probably get one :)

Clemencia said...

Hi, I have awarded your blog the Versatile Blogger Award! Come get it at my blog

Tanya said...

THANK YOU to both of you! We're here to serve. :)