“You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.” – Deuteronomy 6:7
What better thing can we do to prepare our children for the future than to teach them Scripture? When Scripture becomes engrained in a person, it becomes the basis for decision-making. It gives comfort as well as guidance, yet in many instances our children are not being taught enough verses from the Bible. In some cases, verses are merely “skimmed over” and children do not truly learn them.
Both parents and church workers should emphasize Scripture memorization. It is important to remember that repetition is necessary for memorization. It may take at least seven repetitions for the verses to start to “stick”.
Here are some ideas for helping children memorize Scripture.
1) Have written verses on the refrigerator at home.
2) Have written verses on the table to be recited before meals.
3) Have a “verse of the week” at home that children must recite before receiving a favor.
4) Use Scripture freely when talking with children and in giving guidance.
5) Follow up with questions after Sunday School as to the verse that was learned.
6) Write or type verses on a piece of paper, cut it up like a puzzle, and have children put the puzzle together. For repetition, make more than one and race to see who can put it together first.
7) Use cards or slips of paper. Write one word on each paper or card and shuffle them. Have the child put them in the right order.
8) Use a white board and write the verse. Ask the child to read the verse. Have the child close his/her eyes as you erase a word. Have the child reread the verse. Continue until all words have been erased. The child can then “read” the blank board. They have memorized the verse!
9) Bible drills help children become aware of Scripture. Rather than simply finding a verse, the leader needs to teach the meaning of the verse as well. Children should then repeat the verse at least seven times.
10) When parents hear the prayers of the child at bedtime, a verse can be repeated by the child and parent.
God has clearly commanded us to teach His laws to our children. In my opinion, children should learn at least one verse every Sunday in the children’s activities at church. People who are working in a church with children for the first time can be assured that they can never go wrong by teaching Scripture. It is more important than following a quarterly exactly. Quarterlies are designed to be used like a cafeteria… the teacher picks and chooses the parts that apply to the children present.
Once Scripture is engrained in a child, it will forever be a part of him/her. It is something that can never be taken away. It is the best foundation we can possibly provide!