I shared on Monday a list of 50 Bible verses I think every Christian should know.
I've had emails asking how I go about memorizing all this scripture. It seems like a big deal, and it kind of is. You can't memorize a verse a week without a definite plan that you execute faithfully. It doesn't just happen (unlike eating a pint of ice cream which does just happen).
You need a plan.
My answer is that we do it as a family. While I could and probably should work to memorize on my own, it works best for me to do it with my kids and Joe all at the same time.
Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.
-Proverbs 22:6 NKJV
Here's how it works:
We do this at dinner. We always eat dinner together as a family, so dinnertime seems like a good time to work on our scripture memory.
I bought a pretty file card box at Walmart during back to school time two or three years ago. It is glittery pink on the outside and fits 3×5 cards inside.
I wrote all the scriptures that I want us to memorize on brightly colored index cards and put them in the front of the box. Of course, all 50 of the verses from Monday are on cards as well as others I want my kids to know.
When I first started this scripture memory box, I got a little overzealous with the scriptures. I put whole passages on cards, expecting my kids to learn 5-10 verses at a time. I have since moved all those cards to the back of the box, waiting for the day when the kids are old enough to learn longer passages. For now, we're concentrating on shorter verses like John 3:16 and Luke 1:37.
I set up the box as it is described on Simply Charlotte Mason. It's a simple system, and there is a video and a free download there that you can use to set up your box.
Using this system, you have a verse that you're currently working on (behind a tab called Daily because you read it every day), and then you have verses that you've already memorized and just review (behind tabs for the day of the week and the days of the month).
So here's how it works:
- I read the verse behind the Daily tab. The kids and Joe recite it with me and we all say it two more times (for a total of three times).
- I read the verse behind either the Even or Odd tab. We already know this one, so we say it only once together. Usually the kids join in when I say it the first time.
- I read the verse behind the day of the week tab. We say that together.
- I read the verse behind the day of the month tab. We say that together.
Once we can all say the verse without prompting, we move it to the Even or Odd spot, and all the other verses get moved back one space in the box. Moving verse cards takes more time than the actual memory work.
Eventually, we will have 2 or more verses in each spot, so it will take longer, but by then, the kids will be older and have longer attention spans. As it is now, it takes us a week or two to learn even the shortest verses. My kids are 4 and 7.
How do you encourage scripture memory?
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