Open and Closed Questions
Pastor Daniel Habben continues his series of articles that help us as we consider the question, How can we best reach adults with God’s Word in a Bible class setting? With a clear reminder of the blessings God’s people receive as they study his Word, this series of articles challenges all of us to take a serious look at the way we teach Bible class. Pastor Habben offers specific and practical suggestions for us to consider as we strive to become better communicators of God’s truth.

In this article, Pastor Habben demonstrates how to craft open questions, which encourage deeper reflection and thus greater retention. 

Pastor Daniel Habben served St. Peter Lutheran Church in St. Albert, Alberta, Canada, for 18 years. He recently accepted the call to serve St. John’s Lutheran Church on the island of Antigua. 

Pastor Habben came to love teaching when he tutored at Luther Prep School and is thankful for the feedback he received from his fellow tutors—especially from the Martin Luther College teacher grads! He was a presenter at the 2015 symposium on education at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. Most of the materials in this series of articles are from that presentation.
They never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah. - Acts 5:42
Adult Education: Additum
Dialogue Learning

In the lead article, Pastor Habben encourages us to use open questions as a prerequisite for dialogue learning. Early in the history of Teach the Word, we featured a series of interviews with Missionary Paul Nitz, in which he introduced dialogue learning and made a strong case for the value of developing Bible classes that use learning tasks and encourage dialogue.

Because many of us subscribed to Teach the Word after those interviews were posted (and because a review won’t hurt those who saw them once), we will feature them once again. The links below will take you to the first two interviews.

Teaching Toolbox
Learning Tasks Are Worth the Effort

If you watched the interviews with Missionary Nitz (linked in the Adult Education: Additum), you heard him acknowledge that creating learning tasks is challenging and time-consuming. Yet he emphasized several times that it is “worth it.” 

The goal of education is not simply to have people hear information. If that were the goal, the best teachers would be those who are good at compiling information and can talk the fastest. The goal of education is much more complex.

Curriculum Connection
Influencing God's Children

Bible studies that focus on families or the Christian home are popular studies for a summer adult education program. Influencing God’s Children by James Moeller demonstrates how to influence our children to grow in God’s Word and to live as his children.

The six lessons include:
  • Influences: Past and Present
  • The Importance of Parental Influence
  • Train With the Law and the Gospel
  • Teach Children to Know the Will of God
  • Help Children Improve; Teach Respect
  • Virtues to Instill in Our Children

Check out the sample lesson, "The Importance of Parental Influence," below.

Leader's Guide: PDF
Student Lessons: PDF | RTF

Teaching Tip

Respect the fact that the members of your class will have differing learning styles. Learn about the various styles, and try to include questions and activities that will appeal to people with a variety of learning styles.
  Teach the Word  is a collaboration of Northwestern Publishing House,
Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, and WELS Adult Discipleship.