Which Bible Is Best For My Kids?

What Bible is the best Bible for my child?  We have picked a couple good ones, but we have also picked some that were too hard for our kids. Not all Bibles are the same.  A children's Bibles that works for a four year old girl is not going to work for a 5th grade boy.  So how do you chose one?

There are two basic things to look at when picking a Bible for kids:
1. Readability- Can they understand the words? Can they get the concepts? Does it have select stories (Jesus Storybook Bible) or all passages (like your Bible)?  Here is what one Bible publisher says are the grade/ age levels of a few children's Bibles...

  • Jesus Storybook Bible: birth through elementary age
  • New International Reader’s Version: 3rd grade
  • New Century Version: 3rd grade
  • Contemporary English Version: 4th grade
  • The Message: 4th-5th grade
  • New Living Translation: 6th grade

2. Theme- Each translation could be "branded" into all kinds of themes: boys, girls, teen, cammo, princess, Q&A, etc. All this really is is marketing by the publisher. But does your child like one theme more than another theme? Does it help them to want to read the BIble? Are they proud of their Bible? Do they want a fun theme or do they want one that looks like dad's Bible? Do you need footnotes or not? Some have little devotional thoughts or explanations.

How do you pick a Bible for your kids?
1. Go online to YouVersion.com and read one Bible story from a few of the above translations with your child. Have you child read some out loud.  Read some to them out loud.  See what he understands and responds to well. Go with that translation.  Does he understand what the words being used mean?  Does she get what is happening in the story?  Can he retell you the story after you read it together?

2. Go to a Christian bookstore with your child and look at the themes of the Bibles in that translation. See what catches her eye. Flip through the pages. Look at the helps, quotes, pictures. Does he like it? What does he get excited about?  You can go online and look, but remember that kids are very concrete and probably need to hold the actual Bible to make a decision.

Hope that helps!