Simple Ways for Kids to Learn the Books of the Bible

Give kids a foundation of Biblical knowledge they can build on the rest of their lives!
13 min read

Learning the books of the Bible doesn’t have to be boring! Use these activities when you are planning lessons for your Sunday school class.

Helping kids learn the books of the Bible gives them a foundation of Biblical knowledge that they can build on for the rest of their lives. These activities will not only help your kids understand the basic structure of the Bible, they will keep them engaged and having fun!

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Image Credit: Maskot/Getty Images

You can download these activities one-by-one below, or as a set in one PDF here: Books of the Bible Activities


Looking for a books of the Bible song, too? We love these options from Seeds Family Worship!


4 Books of the Bible Card Games

Here are 4 options for books of the Bible card games. Download the full set of cards below. To make the activities easier/faster, skip the coloring and print the cards on colorful card stock.

Bible Book Cards download

“Go Fish”

Kids may have to look at their Bibles’ Table of Contents for the correct order, but this game makes the learning fun.

How to Play

The goal is to collect four cards in correct Biblical order.

“Order, Order!”

This very active game gets the wiggles out while also teaching the books of the Bible.

How to Play

Distribute two cards to every player. Players move around the room until your signal, when they quickly move to stand and display their cards in correct Biblical order.

“Concentration”

As kids search for matching pairs in this card game, they’ll be getting familiar with the books of the Bible.

How to Play

Lay 12 to 16 identical cards from two sets facedown. Players take turns to flip two cards to find matching pairs; pairs are kept by each player. Count the pairs to determine the winner.

“War”

This two-part card game will have kids pronouncing the Bible book names correctly, as well as putting the books in order.

How to Play

Players shuffle and divide a set of cards between them, and then simultaneously turn over the top cards from their piles, reading the book names aloud. The player whose card comes later in the Bible collects both cards.

Once all cards are played, players work together to correctly order all the cards.

Books of the Bible Facts and Fun

Hidden Word

All the books of the Bible are on this activity page. While kids are simply coloring those in (and learning them!), they’ll also be discovering a secret message.

Old Testament Surprise

This “messy” page sure doesn’t look like a work of art. But as kids color in the names of the Old Testament books … well, they’re in for a surprise!

Computer Art

Kids will enjoy the challenge of staying on track to trace over the names of all the New Testament books. (We’ve done the first one to get them started.) But—Shhh!—they won’t know until they finish and step back that they’ve also drawn a picture!

Swimming Divisions

Your class can “dive in” and complete both parts of this activity at one time, or do the two parts in two different sessions. Either way, they’ll be getting a fun introduction to the divisions of the Old Testament.

Missing Halves

When kids match and then unscramble the letters on this page, they’ll have discovered the names of the divisions of the New Testament.

Sharing the books of the Bible in a chart is one easy way for kids to see and connect with what you’re teaching. For example, check out this colorful chart! The books are segmented by the Old and New Testament, they are color-coded by theme, and they are listed in order!

Tools like this show kids the big picture! (You can find this poster, and other fun teaching tools, in the Bible Tools Poster Pack, available here.)

More Books of the Bible Games

Bible Ball Toss

Bible Ball Toss Download

Here’s an active and fun way to learn the Bible book names. There are several variations, so you can adapt the game to your particular group!

Bible Skill: Put the books of the Bible in the correct order

Materials: Bibles, ball

Preparation: Make copies of the contents pages from a Bible (1 per student).

How to Lead the Game

  1. SAY: It’s easier to find places in the Bible when we know the order of the books. Let’s practice saying the books of the Bible in order.
  2. Distribute copies of the Bible contents page for students to review.
  3. Have kids stand in a circle. Toss a ball to a student and say, “Genesis.” The student who catches the ball says, “Exodus,” then tosses the ball to another student. Continue tossing the ball and saying the names of the books of the Bible in order until all the books have been named. Keep playing the game as time permits.

Game Variations

  1. For younger kids, limit the number of books named, gradually adding more books as students are able to recall them.
  2. For older students, form more than one circle, and have circles compete to see which circle of kids can say the books of the Bible in a specific division of the Bible, such as the Minor Prophets.

Game Tip

If some kids are unfamiliar with the books of the Bible, ask students to take turns reading aloud the names, referring to the Bible contents page. As students say the names, print the Bible book names in order on a large sheet of paper. Display the paper where all students can see it.

Book Guess

Book Guess Download

Use this guessing game to help kids learn the names and spellings of the books of the Bible. You can be creative and play according to categories, like books in a given Bible division, the most difficult book names, and so forth.

Bible Skill: Identify and Spell Books

Materials: Bibles, whiteboard and dry-erase marker (or large sheet of paper and marker)

How to Lead the Game

  1. Lead students to play a game similar to Hangman. On the board or a large sheet of paper, draw blank lines for each letter of a Bible book.
  2. Students are to guess letters of the alphabet. Print correct letters on the appropriate blank lines. Print incorrect letters to the side of the blank lines, and print one letter of the word Bible. Kids try to guess and find the correct book in their Bibles before the word Bible is completed. The student who correctly guesses the word secretly chooses a different book of the Bible and draws lines for other kids to guess. Continue playing the game as time permits.

Game Tip

If playing this game with only a specific section of the Bible, introduce it by saying something like this:

Today we’re going to play a game to find out more about the second group of books in the Old Testament part of the Bible. These books are called the books of History because they tell the history of how God brought Abraham’s descendants back to their homeland many years after Abraham died. These books also tell about how the people obeyed God and disobeyed Him.

Referring to the contents page in their Bibles, kids can take turns reading aloud the names of the books of History: Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, 1 Kings, 2 Kings, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther. Students could also find each book in their Bibles.

Mixed-Up Books

Mixed-Up Books Download

This friendly competition is a way for two teams to learn the divisions of the books of the New Testament—and to get a clearer idea of God’s big-picture plan.

Bible Skill: Identify Bible divisions in the New Testament

Materials: Bibles, index cards, marker, masking tape

Preparation: Print the names of the books of the New Testament on index cards, one name per card. On separate cards, print the names of the main divisions of New Testament books (Gospels, History, Letters, Prophecy). Make at least two sets of cards or one set of book and main division cards for every ten students. Tear masking tape into 3” strips, making at least 56 strips of tape. Place strips on a table or chair where they can be easily removed by kids.

How to Lead the Game

  1. Mix up the book cards you prepared. One at a time, hold up the cards. Students are to tell which division each book is part of. SAY: All the stories in the Bible—from Adam and Eve to the very end—fit together to show us God’s great plan for the world and for our own lives. In the New Testament part of the Bible, we read about the coming of the Savior whom God promised to send. We also read about all the great things that happened after God kept His promise.
  2. Divide the class into at least two teams of no more than ten students each. Teams are to line up in single-file lines at the opposite side of the classroom from where the masking-tape strips are. Place a set of mixed-up book cards face-down in a pile on the floor next to the first student on each team. Tape a set of main division cards on the wall across from each team, near the masking-tape strips. Leave room under each division card for book cards to be taped.
  3. At your signal, the first student in each line takes a book card, runs to the division cards, grabs a piece of tape, and tapes the book card to the wall below the correct division card. Students then return to their teams and tag the next students in line. Play continues until all the cards are on the wall under the correct category.

Game Tip

If your students are not familiar with the New Testament divisions, go over them before playing the game.

Prophet Talk

Prophet Talk Download

This active and musical game focuses on a division of the Bible that sometimes doesn’t get much focus: the Old Testament books of Prophecy. Kids will enjoy learning the book names, as well as discussing why the Old Testament prophets were important.

Bible Skill: Identify Bible divisions: Old Testament Prophecy

Materials: Bibles, whiteboard, dry-erase marker and eraser (or large sheet of paper and marker), children’s music from your collection, music player

Preparation: Print on the board or on a sheet of paper the books of the Major and Minor Prophets in order.

Lead the Game

  1. Have kids sit on the floor in a circle. Ask a volunteer to read from the board the books of the Bible. SAY: God sent many messengers, called prophets, to His people. These prophets spoke or wrote what God wanted His people to know. They gave many warnings to obey God and many promises about the Savior who was coming. We can read these messages in the books of Prophecy. The first five books of prophecy are called the Major Prophets, because these books are longer than the Minor Prophets. The Minor Prophets are the 12 smaller books that complete the Old Testament.
  2. Tell kids to play a game of Hot Potato, passing the eraser or a marker while the music plays. When the music stops, say either “Major Prophets” or “Minor Prophets.” The student with the eraser erases a Bible book name from the division you named. If using paper and markers, the student crosses out the name.
  3. Continue playing until all the books are erased or crossed out. Ask students to repeat together the names of the books of the Major and Minor Prophets.

Game Tips

  1. If you have a student who is reluctant to play the game, ask that student to start and stop the music.
  2. Sit in the circle with the students. Students enjoy getting to know their teachers while playing games together!

Walk and Talk

Walk and Talk Download

The movement and music in this activity will keep kids interested. What a fun way to learn the names and divisions of the New Testament books!

Bible Skill: Identify Bible Divisions: New Testament

Materials: Bibles, roll paper, tape, markers, children’s music from your collection, music player

Preparation: Cover a table with roll paper. Draw lines to divide the paper into sections, one section per student. Print the names of the divisions of the New Testament in separate sections, repeating divisions as needed (“Gospels,” “History,” “Letters,” “Prophecy”).

Lead the Game

  1. SAY: The New Testament tells how God’s promise to send a Savior came true and how God’s keeping of His promise brought salvation to all people!
  2. While you play music, tell kids to hold their Bibles as they walk around the table. When you stop the music, each student should put a hand on one section on the paper. Then each kid should refer to the contents page in a Bible to find a book in the New Testament from that division. When students are ready, each can say the division and book name aloud. Repeat as time permits.
  3. Turn the roll paper over and tape it to the table. Students should walk around the table while you play music. When you stop the music, call out a New Testament division. Each student should write the name of a book in that division. Play several rounds of the game.

GAME TIPS

  1. Introduce the New Testament divisions by SAYING: The word gospel means “good news.” The four gospels tell the good news about Jesus. The History book, Acts, tells what God’s Holy Spirit did through people who told the good news about Jesus to the rest of the world. The next division of the New Testament is Letters. The Letters were written to encourage people to live as Christians. The last division is Prophecy. Revelation, the only New Testament book of prophecy, tells about the future time when Jesus will come back to earth.
  2. You could give each student a copy of a Bible contents page to use in playing the game.

Who’s Got the Beans?

Who’s Got the Beans Download

This lively competition to learn some of the Old Testament divisions and books breaks down into different rounds. The movement and music—along with trying to collect the most beans—will make your kids want to play several rounds!

Bible Skill: Identify Bible Divisions: Old Testament —Law, History, Poetry

Materials: Bibles, 10 beans per students (or other small objects for each student), children’s music from your collection, music player

How to Lead the Game

  1. Ask students to open their Bibles to the contents page. ASK: Which books are in the Law division of the Old Testament? (Genesis through Deuteronomy). Ask volunteers to read the names of the books of Law aloud. Identify the books of History and Poetry in the same way.
  2. Give each student ten beans. Group students into two equal teams: A and B. (You can participate if you have an uneven number of kids.) As you play music, students should move randomly around the room. When you stop the music, each student should find a partner from the other team. Call out either A or B. Each student in the named group is to say the name of a book in one of the first three divisions of the Old Testament (Law, History, Poetry). The kids’ partners should respond by saying the name of the correct division, and then name another book in the division. (Optional: If students are unfamiliar with Bible book names, let them use the contents page in their Bibles to find book names.) If the division named is correct, the first student gives his or her partner a bean. If the division named is incorrect, the partner gives the first student a bean. Keep playing as time permits. The object of the game is to have the most beans at the end of the playing period.

Game Tips

  1. Coins or uncooked pasta shapes can be used instead of beans.
  2. Before playing, briefly review the first three divisions of the Old Testament. SAY: The books of Law tell about the beginning of the world and record God’s instructions to His people. The books of History tell how God led His people to a new land and give us stories about their leaders. The books of Poetry are stories, songs, sayings, and poems about how great and wonderful God is and how we can live in ways that please Him.

Looking for more? Find other outstanding Bible games and ideas for how to get the most out of your Sunday school games. Or choose from this list of short Bible verses perfect for kids to memorize!

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  Updated on August 19, 2019

About the Author

  • Your Ministry Spark Team is made of ministry volunteers, leaders, and experts who work with David C Cook. We’re passionate about helping others know, love, and follow Jesus. And, we have a big heart for those who serve the kingdom—that’s you. Together, we can do this!

© 2020 David C Cook. All rights reserved.
© 2019 David C Cook. All rights reserved.
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