As a homeschooling mom of younger children the only books I seem to read by the dozens these days are picture books. But, you know what, depending on the book, that’s not a bad thing for us “older” people. Well-written books for kids will also feed the soul of an adult. As C.S. Lewis said, “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”
My family just finished reading the original Winnie-the-Book by A.A. Milne and I was so captivated by the story that I re-told them to any friend or family member that feigned interest. I’ve had my mind blown by Wizard of Oz and learned history with multitudes of chapter books.
Here are my five favorite books for younger children that teach Biblical values and that are guaranteed to give the adult a good challenge-of-faith as well. And, I am now so tech-savvy that you can click on the picture and be taken directly to amazon:
The Princess and the Kiss is a story that introduces little girls to the idea that their first kiss is “gift” that they can give to a young man when they’re older. The book plants a lovely visual of saving that special God-given gift for one that is worthy. You can watch the whole story here:
The author of the The Princess and the Kiss also wrote The Squire and the Scroll. While it’s written for the adventure-loving boy it can be a good teaching tools for little girls as well. The young squire follows his knight on a journey and is faced with many temptations. How does he handle these temptations and how do you handle temptations? And if you’re interested in diving deeper into the life-lessons presented in this book (and are not easily overwhelmed) check out GuestHollow.com and print out extra activity pages for you and your children to work through.
This is a child-friendly adaptation of Pilgrim’s Progress. The pictures are dramatic and the story is not dumbed-down in the slightest. My absolute favorite part is when Christian meets the cross. Kids Answers (Answers in Genesis for Kids) has lots of great materials for the science-loving child, but they also have the Dangerous Journey videos. To watch just follow this link, scroll all the way down to the bottom (if you can without getting side-tracked), and all parts of the Dangerous Journey will be there OR go here for a complete resource guide to the book.
I know I could easily suggest the classic The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe but if you haven’t read this particular Narnian adventure you really must! Read it with the young and old or read it by yourself; you won’t be disappointed. The Pevensie children visit their cousin, Eustace, who is often nicknamed Useless Eustace. The children are sucked into Narnia and the places they visit on the Dawn Treader, while based in fantasy, will often hit home for us readers. A great resource to accompany your adventures is Roar.
By the way, did you know that C.S. Lewis did not set out to write a “Christian” children series? When he finished the book, he read through it again, and he was actually surprised at how much theology had worked itself into his storytelling. There’s a bit of trivia for you that you’ll never see on Jeopardy.
The most beautiful, most touching children’s Bible I have ever found is The Jesus Storybook Bible. It makes the perfect baby gift, perfect birthday gift, perfect welcome-to-the-faith gift. Even those who have grown up in the church will be swept off their feet as they read about God lacing Himself into every Bible story we’ve ever read. The official site is found here and is filled with good resources.
What are your favorite children books?