How to Teach Your Kids to Memorize Scripture

I thought I would share a few tips on how I have taught our oldest daughter (she will be 3 on July 25) to memorize scripture. She has currently memorized eight verses that vary in length. I started when she was about 18 months old. I should add that Delaney has always been good with words. Some of her friends weren’t even talking at 18 months, so the age you start could vary a great deal. They are capable of memorizing so early though!

Breakfast time is our time that we work on scripture memory. Our minds are fresh and we haven’t annoyed each other yet. I started with Deuteronomy 6:5, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your strength.” I would repeat the verse several times and have her repeat it back to me. That’s it! We would do this every morning at breakfast until she started doing it on her own. It took her about 3-4 months to memorize her first verse.

We moved on to Colossians 3:20 from there, “Children obey your parents, for this pleases the Lord.” Side note, this verse is excellent during disciplinary moments. She learned that one in about a month. We would still say Deuteronomy 6:5, along with her new verse. After that, we moved on to Psalm 119:11, John 14:6, Hebrews 13:6, Proverbs 15:1, Deuteronomy 7:9 and Matthew 5:9. Depending on the length, it only takes her about a week to learn a new verse now.

I picked most of the verses on my own. I just looked for shorter ones that contained a truth that I could explain to a 2 year old. If you look up Deuteronomy 7:9, its pretty lengthy. It was actually my memory verse for the week, but just in me repeating it every morning at breakfast, she memorized it.

I found this book to be extremely helpful recently. We are also working on recognizing and sounding out letters, so it’s really a great tool. Plus, it has a story to go along with each verse that she really likes.

I think it helps Delaney seeing me memorize verses as well. I ask her to say her verses, and then she asks me to say my verses. It’s a group effort and something we like to do together. When she doesn’t want to say them, I offer some kind of a reward (usually a high five).

I can’t help but think that the Lord just smiles when he hear her say her verses. It is the sweetest thing and the highlight of my day.


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