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    Grapevine Studies:
    Making Bible Studies Fun!

    Would you like to turn Bible study time into an engaging interactive adventure for your family or classroom? Now you can draw your way through the Bible to see the people, places, and events come to life right before your eyes! John and Dianna Wiebe, homeschool parents of four children, developed this unique Bible study method out of a desire to lead their children to a deeper relationship with God. They found that by illustrating Bible passages using simple stick figures, symbols, colors, and words, their children became enthusiastically immersed in the Scriptures. The Wiebes are graciously making this program available to everyone through their home business, Grapevine Studies.

    The Grapevine Studies curriculum is written for ages 5 and up. It works well with young children, as well as children with learning disabilities or attention deficit disorders. Visual aids, timelines, and hands-on lessons in a chronological overview format help easily distracted students to pay attention better and retain more of the information since they are active participants rather than a passive audience. This curriculum appeals to many learning styles since it involves reading, listening, drawing and coloring. The Stick Figuring lessons are divided into several levels, covering both Old and New Testaments. Each level increases the amount of information covered and the skills needed.

    If you are just starting this program, you don’t have to begin with the first book but will place each student at their appropriate level. Sample lessons are available at if you’re not sure which book to get and want to see what a level looks like before you buy it. The curriculum was not written for a particular denomination but is meant to be trans-denominational, although the Wiebe family’s Statement of Faith is posted on their website. I noticed that the Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the New King James Version although it looks like the curriculum can be easily tailored to use with any translation.

    The Stick Figure curriculums contain 38 - 40 lessons that consist of reading, drawing, reviewing, and memorizing. Every lesson begins by teaching the timeline for that series, and each subsequent lesson starts with a timeline review up to the point of that lesson. This makes the Bible verses, characters and events much easier to place within their context. With each lesson, the students will read a Bible passage, answer a set of review questions, and learn a Bible memory verse that is related to the lesson and the timeline. The parent or teacher can determine how to apply the lesson based upon prayer, the type of class, the needs of the students, and what he or she feels led to emphasize.

    Beginners (ages 5-7) will learn about major characters and events of the Bible and memorize verses. Level 1 students (grades 1-2) will begin to learn the Old or New Testament timeline, and be able to tell several facts about each character or event on the timeline. Level 2 students (grades 3-4) will expand their knowledge of the Old or New Testament timeline and memorize important Bible facts. Level 3 students (grades 5-8) should be able to complete the Old or New Testament Timeline on their own and will be introduced to basic biblical geography. Level 4 students (teens and adults) will master the Old or New Testament Timeline, know where the books of the Bible fit into the chronology, and will be introduced to basic Bible study tools (Concordance, Dictionary, and Topical Bible).

    For those who are teaching both younger and older children, Grapevine Studies makes multi-level instruction simple. If you have students in Level 1 to Level 4, all you have to do is purchase the teacher manual at the highest level being taught. The teacher notes for each level are designed to teach that level, and with minimal teacher adjustment are also compatible with the levels below. Each student will need his or her own student book. The Student Book is basically a workbook on high-quality paper, which when completed will become a permanent record of what they have learned in their Bible study, as well as a personalized keepsake of their work. The books are also available on a CD in Adobe Acrobat PDF format which enables you to print pages at your convenience.

    In addition, the Wiebes have developed a Level 5 Blueprints curriculum that is designed for older students to build upon the foundation of the Stick Figure curriculum by applying themselves to a more in-depth study of the Bible. Blueprints is a self-directed chronological journey through the Old or New Testament for teens and adults. Students will be taking notes, mapping, charting, using Bible study tools, answering challenging critical thinking questions, doing hands-on activities and research projects. A Teacher’s Manual is not needed for the Level 5 course. This curriculum is great for individual studies or can be used in a group setting. The organized layout will make it a useful reference resource when completed.

    Grapevine Studies also offers a “Biblical Feasts and Holy Days” curriculum. Have you ever wondered why God established the feasts and holy days of the Old Testament? This unique 13-week study of the original holidays teaches students about the seven feasts of the Lord, the Sabbath, and Purim. Learn what God expected from His people when they celebrated and observed the feasts and holy days. Also read about New Testament references to the feasts and holy days. “Biblical Feasts and Holy Days” studies are available in both Stick Figure and Blueprint formats.

    All of these Bible study lessons are well-planned, nicely laid out, and user-friendly. The curriculum is easy to follow and teach, making it perfect for homeschoolers. It is also useful for Christian schools, Sunday school, small group studies, and family devotions. The 15-20 minute lessons require little preparation time. Children will need crayons or colored pencils for the Student Workbooks. A dry erase board with colored markers is recommended for use by the teacher, but in our own homeschool I think we may be able to get by without it. The Teacher’s Book contains helpful tips, lesson plans, discussion questions, and examples of simple drawings. Of course, if your children have an artistic bent, by all means let them demonstrate their own creativity in their illustrations.

    Stick figuring through the Bible is more like doodling than creating detailed illuminated manuscripts, but who knows, it may inspire your student to become another Gustave Doré. He was a 19th-century book illustrator most famous for his depictions of numerous scenes from the Bible. The Doré Bible as it was called was mentioned in Chapter 4 of Tom Sawyer. Mark Twain wrote, “How many of my readers would have the industry and application to memorize two thousand verses, even for a Doré Bible?” Well, these Grapevine Studies will give your students a good head start on both illustrating and memorizing the Bible!

    Grapevine Studies
                         Educating this Generation of Believers


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