Once you’ve considered the scope and sequence, look at the theme – what is the main focus of the VBS? In my Top Ten VBS Countdown for 2014 you will find a breakdown of Scope and Sequence as well as the Theme and Setting for each of the VBS resources I review. Each VBS has a theme; some of the themes this year include focusing on Jesus’ Amazing Grace, learning who Jesus really is, discovering the extraordinary love of Jesus, trusting God, discovering how the ordinary becomes extraordinary with God, discovering Who the One True God is, discovering God’s love, exploring the nature of God, choosing God’s way, learning how to be a “glory giver” and more! All of the VBS resources have a specific Bible theme/focus. This is where having a goal for your VBS comes in – compare the VBS themes with your goals . . . it should help you narrow down your choices even more!
Finally, after you’ve considered scope and sequence and theme, look at the settings. Too often when it comes to selecting a VBS we look at the setting, think one looks “fun” and make our selection. Certainly the setting is important and we do want it to be fun, but the setting absolutely should not be the first thing you think about when it comes to selecting the VBS resource you will use. Think about the settings you’ve used in the past couple years and if possible look for something new and different, but do not determine your VBS choice based on setting alone. Some of the settings for 2014 include taking your children to a jungle, a wilderness, an exciting workshop, on a boat, to an island or even gets the involved as spys or detectives! There are interesting and fun settings to choose from in 2014 for sure1
Once you’ve looked at how the lessons are taught – if they intentionally engage your children and give them opportunities to live what they’ve learned, considered scope, sequence and theme, the setting can then be the component which helps you narrow your selection to the final choice or two.