I have had quite a few people ask me for my ideas for little baby Bible play. Though I started this blog when children were still little babies, they have slowly crept into being a toddler and a preschooler. So I decided to enlist some help in answer this question.
Jenny Cho has become one of my favorite creatives to follow on the internet. Her youngest is still in the baby years, and I have so been amazed by the way she has introduced her children to the Lord from the very beginning. I am so inspired and encouraged by the ideas she shares below, and I know you will be too! And be sure to follow Jenny over at Christ Centered Family for more ideas on sharing the love of Jesus with littles.
Before becoming a mom, I didn’t know that raising kids would be difficult and full of challenges every day. After giving birth to my first child, I realized that I needed help from above everyday, and both my baby and I needed daily grace from God. And that was the starting point of why I started baby play based on faith in God. Sometimes, I made special play tools to play with my little ones, but mostly, I just played with my babies using the songs (e.g. nursery rhymes or kids hymns) and common things that can be found in almost every home. My way of doing the Bible play with babies is putting God first and doing all activities of play in faith with Biblical meanings. There can be many ways to play the Bible with babies. But here, I am sharing a few ideas about how I did play with my little ones before they became one year-old.
For me, I started baby Bible play before the baby is born. I am Korean, now living in the US. In Korea, there is a culture for expecting parents, which is called ‘태교(Taekyo),’ which mean ‘prenatal education’ or ‘education for the fetus.’ A common way to do this is taking time to read or sing a song for the fetus, praying for the baby, and making special gifts for the new baby. For me, I do this by practicing my faith by praying the same prayer (my husband and I did Prayer of Peace from Saint Francis of Assisi) and read baby Bible and Christian picture books to my baby in the womb.
I also make a baby mobile designed with Biblical meaning to hang it in the baby room. And when the baby was born, and as he (or she) grows, they remembered the prayer and storybook that they react with becoming calm and smile or deep eye contact. This experience is so amazing!
After the baby is born, for the first 3 months, I played with my baby using black and white DIY Bible for baby and simple songs with a Biblical message. I placed a black-and-white mobile on the crib to let my baby see and play. While she plays, I tell her that God loves her and his love never fails.
Black and White Bible
I also made felt black-and-white Bible using simple images of telling the story of the Bible to show my baby as she lay down on her bed. This Bible is still well used with my baby, who is at the age of 8 months-old.
After the baby started his or her tummy time and stays with the pose for a long time, I made tummy time sensory bags with a Biblical message and played with my baby. To make this, I just added water into the gallon size Ziploc bag and put glitter, heart-shaped beads. This sensory bag is to tell my baby that God is love and his love is so amazing!
Tummy time sensory board is another way to play the Bible with babies. I made these Creation sensory board for my baby to explore and know that God made all the world. For this age group and the older babies can move their hands freely and love to explore with their hands and eyes that I made this sensory board to explore the Gospel by their senses.
Simple songs and hand-motions play were also good ways to play with the baby. To do this, I got lots of help from the book ‘Playtime Devotions.’ The book introduces so many good ideas for Biblical play with babies. For example, the book shows how to play peek-a-boo with a baby by introducing songs and the Bible verse that matches the play. You can see my examples in the following link: Simple Bible Play Songs.
Also, playing with the mirror is another simple but good way to do the Bible play with kids. I often play with my baby using a mirror and telling her ‘God made you, God made me, and we are created in his image. I also made a simple song for my baby to say this word. You can hear the song in the following link if you are interested: Mirror Play.
Playing with Colors
Playing with colors can be another fun way to learn the God is good, and he is the creator of everything. I do lots of color play with my little ones using colors. I hung color films to play with color and lights to tell that God made colors and his love can be represented by each color. For scarfs or fabrics can also be a good way to play with colors and the Gospel too. Red for the love of Christ. Green for unchanging love of God like evergreen trees. Blue for deep and wide grace of God and so on.
Playing with light can teach babies that God is light in our life. One night, I used soft cotton ball lights to play with my baby for the sensory Bible play and let her know that God is light and his love is warm and cozy all the time. I just set up the tent, put her inside, and make outside dark and light on the cotton ball lights. She curiously explored the lights and enjoyed the moments playing with it. While she plays, I tell her that God is light and his love always keeps us safe and peaceful.