The Teacher's Manual contains 13 lessons that help you teach and facilitate a group through this study. Each lesson begins with an outline for quick reference that includes a key verse and message goal. Each part of the lesson is then summarized, directing you when to open in prayer, read each specific part, open up discussion, and close in prayer. The remaining pages of the lesson contain sections of a story to read that continue through the course of the program to hold interest, as well as sections labeled "The Message" that teach the lesson. The message section is full of biblical accounts and scripture, as well as questions for the teacher to use to help facilitate discussion. Also included in the Teacher Manual are teaching tips for many of the lessons. The study is clearly set up for group teaching, but can be easily adapted for individual use as well.
The Homework Manual (Student Journal) is for the student so if you are using this study in a group setting, you will want one copy for each child. It includes 12 chapters.
Lesson 1: God Your Heavenly Father
Lesson 2: God’s Love
Lesson 3: Why Doesn’t 1+2 Add Up in My Life?
Lesson 4: It’s All-Out War
Lesson 5: The Enemy’s Lies . . . And Where They Lead
Lesson 6: Pressure!
Lesson 7: Anger
Lesson 8: Forgiveness
Lesson 9: Two Brothers – Pride and Selfishness
Lesson 10: Refocus
Lesson 11: Prasso, Putting It All Into Practice
Lesson 12: The Journey
Each chapter begins with a brief introduction and is then broken down into 5 daily lessons that include verses to look up and questions to answer. Day 6 is a Rethink Day, in which the student is asked to review what they learned, and then the lesson ends with questions for group discussions. Each day's assignment generally takes about 15-30 minutes, depending on the speed of your child.
How We Used this program and what we think-
I decided that the summer was a perfect time for my 13 year old son and I to do some bonding. With his dad away for a while, it is sometimes a struggle to feel like we are connecting. Let's face it, a 13 year boy needs a dad around, and sometimes I feel like a poor substitute. I approached him about us doing this bible study together and he reluctantly agreed. Hey, I will take what I can get!
We fell into a routine pretty easily, and I am happy to say we are still going strong. At the beginning of each week, usually on a Sunday evening, we read through the lesson together, taking turns reading and discussing. Though the study is more set up with a group lesson in mind, I have not had any problems tailoring it to fit our needs with just a few word changes, like "you all" to "you." We did take turns reading, as the lesson can take 30 minutes to an hour depending on your reading speed and how much you discuss. After reading the lesson from the Teachers Manual, Salem would then be responsible for doing a lesson from his student workbook each day of the week. When we met again the following week I would allow him to talk about the material and ask any questions on what he had been learning. I did allow him to choose what he wanted to share, as I felt like he would be more likely to feel free to write what he wanted if his mom wasn't reading every word he wrote.
Many lessons included looking up a decent amount of scripture, and while that was not his favorite part he was able to see how having those scriptures in his head made for ammunition against bad choices and proved helpful in making good choices.
The other thing I really liked about this study is that is does require daily attention of the student. While we are teaching our children at a young age to spend daily quiet time with the Lord, I love having this tool to encourage actual time engaged in and studying the Word of God in a slightly more formal way. After all, practice helps form a habit, I believe that Bible studies can be very helpful in our faith journey, and learning at a young age how to actively study the word of God is a worthwhile skill to learn. Not only does it teach kids how to look at scripture in a new way and apply it to their lives, it teaches daily discipline.
In using an engaging story about two teen brothers on a week-long adventure in the mountains, Prasso Ministries has created a worthwhile Bible Study that will engage and challenge your teens on topics such as faith, Satan, revenge, and forgiveness. They are topics worth studying and this is a study worth using! The study also stresses the importance of the Bible being the word of God and that finding the right path and staying on it is the key to leading a Christian life.
Given that it has also carved out some pretty special mom and son bonding time for us, I hate to see it end!