Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Teen Prasso - Continually Practicing the Bible (A Schoolhouse Crew Review)

As a mom of teens, it's of vital importance to me that my kids know the Scripture and are firmly grounded in their faith as part of their homeschool education. We were asked to review the Teen Prasso Teacher's Manual and Homework Manual from Prasso Ministries, a company dedicated to teaching Christians to practice the Bible in their daily lives.
Teen Prasso Review
"Prasso" is a Greek word meaning "to practice" and the company is founded on this basis of practicing the careful study of Scripture and helping Christian apply what they learn in their daily lives, finding hope and healing in God's Word. Prasso Ministries began as a small group study in Greenville, SC, and today provides study materials for men, women, and teens, for use in groups, counseling, personal Bible studies, homeschools, and more.

The Teen Prasso Teacher's Manual and Homework Manual we received is a 12-week study geared especially for teenagers, to help them start on the right path and learn to rely on God's Word as their standard and guide for all the decisions and situations they will face in life.

Teen Prasso Review

The Teen Prasso Homework Manual, or Student Journal, is a coil-bound journal of almost 200 pages, with daily lessons that encourage the student to delve into Scripture and think deeply about how it applies in their own life. It is written directly to the student, and meant for them to use on their own. A daily lesson includes reading Bible passages and answering questions about them, writing out verses, making observations and personal application of what they read, and challenging them to allow the truth to shape their character.

Teen Prasso ReviewTeen Prasso Review
The Teen Prasso Teacher's Manual contains related material and all the instructions for leading a group study and discussion of Teen Prasso. There are 13 weekly lessons, each with a Teaching Outline and practical Teaching Tips. There is a fictional story for the leader to present to the students that illustrates the principles of the lesson. This coil-bound book is 124 pages, and also includes helpful tips for leading effective discussions and dealing with the different personality types in a group.

How did we use it? I enlisted Kennady's help in reviewing this - she is, after all, a teenager! I gave her the Student Journal for her personal use, and we set aside some time to get together and make use of the additional story and teaching tools in the Teacher's Manual. The Student Journal can actually be used independently. There are five days of lessons suitable for a teen's personal Bible study and devotional time, and each one takes about 15 to 20 minutes. On Day 6 of each week, there is a Rethink lesson, asking the student to review what they have studied previously in the week and jot down a few thoughts or a verse from each day's lesson that is especially meaningful to them. And finally, there are some questions for Group Discussion at the end of each Chapter. If a student is doing the Homework Manual by themselves, as Kennady was, they can either reflect on those questions on their own, or discuss them with a parent.

Okay, the Teacher's Manual... just in the first couple of pages, there is some really valuable information for those of us leading groups. Not just this particular study, or even groups for teens, but groups in general. Tips for how much you should be talking as the leader (not much!), tips for asking questions that truly open discussion and get teens participating and talking, and ideas on how to respond to the diverse personalities in a group. The real meat of the Teacher's Manual is the detailed lesson material. There is a full page Teaching Outline provided for each of the 13 lessons. You can use this outline to customize the lesson, and it's a helpful guide for leading a group in the study. For each lesson, there is a Key Verse and a clearly stated Message Goal - what the students should understand by participating in the study. For each week's lesson, the Teacher would present the Story, which is in two or three parts each week, and is continued throughout the 13 weeks; and lead the Message (Biblical teaching) part of lesson, also in two or three parts. The Message is completely scripted along with the story, or you can use the bullet points in the Teaching Outline to come up with your own presentation of that material.  The questions for group discussion at the end of each chapter of the Homework Manual can be used during the group lesson as well.

The Message Goals are deep and important, not just surface pat answer things. Message Goals include helping students understand:

  • that God's Word is the only standard that they should live by.
  • the reality and nature of Spiritual Warfare. There is no need to fear the war going on around us; but it is critical to be prepared.
  • the difference between the "fear of man" and the "fear of God."
  • how dangerous the sins of pride and selfishness can be.
  • they have a choice to either train their wills to serve themselves or to serve God.
Now I have to say that using the Teacher's Manual didn't work out that great for just one-on-one study. Kennady liked the story, thought it was interesting and wanted to keep going and find out what would happen next, but she wanted to just read it herself rather than me read it to her. Shrug. So we tried that, which wasn't a bad way of doing it, but it necessarily limited the amount of discussion between us. In the end, she told me she thought the kids at youth group would like the story and the lessons, and it would be interesting and engaging for them. She also loved the suggestion of having the story presented as a sort of readers theater, and thought that would go over very well with the teens in our group.

Teachers manual is clearly best used for leading a group, for individual study, I would say just use the student journal

What we liked best:

  • deep, meaningful study that challenges teens and encourages them to really get into the Word.
  • emphasizes the importance of the daily discipline of studying and applying Scripture in practical ways.
  • the student journal can stand alone for teens wanting something for their personal study or quiet time.
  • an engaging story in installments that teens are likely to find interesting.
  • a teaching guide that includes both a detailed script for leading a group, and an outline for customizing the message as needed. 
What I need to mention:

  • I do think the Teacher's Manual is best used for leading a group, and for individual study or just one parent/teacher and one student working together, the Homework Manual alone would work fine.
Our bottom line: As a parent and a youth leader, I greatly appreciate the depth and discipleship principles of this study. I warmly recommend it to anyone looking for a solid Bible study curriculum geared especially for a group of teens, and I think it would be a great choice for teen Sunday School classes or any group Bible teaching.
Teen Prasso Review
Would you like to practice the Bible with your teens? Here's what you need to know:
Visit the website:

Pricing: The Teen Prasso Homework Manual is available for $15, and the Teen Prasso Teacher's Manual is available for $35. Visit the Prasso Ministries Resources page to learn about other products offered.

Age recommendation: The Teen Prasso Homework Manual is designed especially for teenage students.

You can follow Prasso Ministries on Facebook.

Visit the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog for more information and to read other reviews. 
Prasso Ministries Review

Crew Disclaimer

Don't miss a coffee break! Subscribe to Homeschool Coffee Break by Email!

 ©2006-2015 Homeschool Coffee Break. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author.

I have done my best to provide accurate pricing and links at the time this post originally appeared. Please be aware that these may change.


Post a Comment

I love comments! It's like visiting over a virtual cup of coffee.