Seek-and-Circle Bible Battles — B&H Publishing
A fun activity for kids that gives some opportunity for teaching your child the truth of the Bible
When I first saw that I had the opportunity to review the new children’s activity book Seek-and-Circle Bible Battles, I honestly was not very interested. Do I really want a children’s book completely devoted to the battles in the Bible? It simply rubbed me the wrong way, like those impostors in any medium (book, movie, car decal/t-shirt) that wrap something in a Bible story or verse but otherwise have nothing to do with the gospel of Jesus. But that’s where I was wrong.
One Big Story is the line of B&H Kids books that take stories from all over the Bible and show how they point to Jesus. This book is no different. Taking the form of a “seek-and-circle” book (I didn’t know what to call these before, but I have seen several others in bookstores), it provides an image of a battle from the Bible and a checklist of people, animals, or other items for your child to circle. (In can’t-miss-it statements on the cover and throughout the book, it states to “use a write-on, wipe-off marker” for multiple uses, but such a marker is not included: a moderate disappointment.) My 3 year-old loves the activity, and I wasn’t even sure she knew how to circle something before putting it in her hands. For a kid that can read and likes hunting for things, it could probably keep them busy for hours. However, the best part is the “Christ Connection” section at the bottom of each checklist. In true One Big Story form, this paragraph explains what is happening in the picture and what it has to do with Jesus. Each story has a specific point, and that point is oriented toward the cross. For my girl, who needs me to read the list of items to her, this ensures that she hears how this connects to the Jesus she is constantly singing and talking about. If any of it gets through, this book has done more eternal good than any other activity book I’ve seen.
With regard to the quality of the physical book, I was rather impressed. It is sturdy and lays pretty flat on the table. The pages are thick, but there are plenty of them, and a plethora of items to find on each page, so your child won’t breeze through the whole book in an afternoon unless he or she is older and better at finding things. However, I must say that I spent a good ten minutes look for the 8th and final sword a few days ago, so even older kids might spend a bit of time on it.
The only couple of negatives I saw with Seek-and-Circle Bible Battles were with the logistics of circling and erasing. There is no marker included, which isn’t a huge deal, but that also means that depending on exactly what type of marker you get it may be easier or harder to wipe off. A baby wipe doesn’t work, which would have been extremely convenient for this father of three. And when you do wipe it off, the crease in the middle of the book retains some of the color of the marker you wiped off. Finally, as many things as there are to circle (a definite plus), the page becomes full of circled items and you almost have to erase all your prior circles before you finish the page, although the checklist still comes in handy to chart your progress.
None of these are anything but tiny complaints, however. In the grand scheme of things, Seek-and-Circle Bible Battles is thrilling for kids and a useful tool for adults, whether your goal is giving your child a brain-boosting activity or teaching them about Jesus.
I received this book as a review copy courtesy of B&H Books, but my opinions are my own.