September 20, 2010

Introducing a Concordance

     I have found that once a child has learned to read reasonably well, and can use a dictionary, then the child is ready to learn about concordances.  My favorite way to introduce the concordance is while reading Dangerous Journey, a book utilized in our fourth grade literature studies.  The book is an abbreviated and illustrated version of Pilgrim's Progress, an allegory of the Christian life.  The book is rich in symbols and allusions to God's Word.  Therefore, it is a natural choice for finding phrases of Biblical verses within a literature book. 

     The method was simple.  Five phrases from the book that were parts of well known Biblical verses were chosen.  Each day, the child and I found one of the phrases in the book, and then decided which words would be good words to look up in the concordance.  I gently guided the child toward nouns and verbs.  When we looked in the concordance and found 253 verses listed for a common word, the child learned to choose a more specific word with less verse references.  Once we agreed on a word, we reread the phrase from the book.  Next, we read through each verse reference to find similar wording and meaning.  When we found a match, we read in the Bible the full verse and context.  By comparing the Biblical verse and context to the book's passage, we were able to determine if the verse was indeed the one the author was alluding to in the storyline.  The child then wrote the Bible verse and reference on a worksheet I had made for this purpose.

     I wanted our children to have a simple guided introduction to using a concordance.  This method has proved successful with our two older children.  And, in the years to come, I look forward to teaching our younger children about concordances as well.

This post has been linked to the Hip Homeschool Hop!  I'm having trouble inserting the button so it connects back to the hop.  Instead, I've had to add the link here.

This post has also been linked to Raising Rock Stars.  To read other posts about teaching our children click here.


  1. I remember reading an abridged Pilgrim's Progress when I taught 3rd grade...but never the "real" book.

    This is such an applicable and practical way to introduce using a concordance! I love it!

  2. Hi,I'm vivisitng from the HIp Homeschool Hop. I'm following your blog. Come and check out mine and consider following it too. :)

  3. Newest follower from HHH. I think this idea is wonderful. What a good way to introduce kids to researching the Word!

    I just started a new Wednesday link-up called Ordinary Days for moms to submit posts about a day in the life of their homeschool and I'm hoping you'll join.


    Stuff and Nonsense


Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...