As we continue to incorporate more hands-on learning at Lincoln Christian, you might wonder just how hands-on learning works in Bible class. Last week, George Lockyer, Spiritual Development Coordinator and 8th grade Bible teacher, introduced a hands-on project to help his 8th grade Bible students understand why we are able to rely on the accuracy of the Old Testament and its transcription from early manuscripts.
As the 8th graders took on the role of Masoretic Scribes and attempted to copy Deuteronomy 6:4-5 in Hebrew, Mr. Lockyer let them know there would be “zero tolerance” for error. If an error was made, the student had to throw out their sheet and start over. Students divided into groups of three. Two students took turns as the scribes, while one oversaw and checked for errors. Additionally, these students were required to “wash their hands” (with hand sanitizer) and change pens every time they wrote the name of the Lord.
Out of the forty-seven students in eighth grade, only two completed the verses without an error. At the completion of the project, the students had a much deeper appreciation for the work of the Old Testament Scribes and confirmation that the reliability of the Old Testament can be trusted. Eighth-grader, Cooper Erikson talked about tedious nature of the work, “We had to write the works in Hebrew and I was the person to check the work for accuracy. I was impressed with the intentionality of my teammates. It was difficult work, but they were so careful to make sure nothing was wrong.”
As we continue to raise up students that will inevitably face a world of skepticism, doubt, and deceit, we want to ensure they are not just believing the accuracy of the Bible because their parents or teachers say it is true. If that’s the case, then when they are challenged or attacked, as we are promised they will be, their faith likely be shaken. This learning experience in Bible was an active example of the preparation 1 Peter 3:15 speaks of. “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.” A little hands-on project like this can go a long way beyond the well-sanitized hands these 8th-grade students walked away with.