Helping Kids Memorize Scripture
We have had a lot of people ask us about Scripture memorization with kids, so over the next few weeks we will share a variety of ways to help your kids memorize Scripture. This is not my personal strength, so I am looking forward to the new challenge myself!
Make it Personal
Our first idea to help kids memorize Scripture is to make it personal to them.
This past summer my son, Calvin, was scared to take his swim test at our gym. The test involves swimming the full length of the pool without touching the bottom or sides, and when you pass it you can go in the deep end of the pool without a life jacket. All of his friends had passed, but he had failed the summer before, and he was afraid to try again. He is the kind of kid who doesn’t like to do anything until he is sure he can do it. He was fully capable of passing the test, but he just wasn’t confident enough.
One morning I gave him a hug and shared Philippians 4:13 with him, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”
I explained, “Calvin you can pass the swimming test. I know you can do it and I also know you’re a little afraid. It’s okay to be afraid. God is always with you and you can do anything with His strength, even things that are scary. And this verse is super cool because it’s your Uncle Spencer’s favorite verse! I think that if you say this verse while you are swimming you will remember that you can do hard things. What do you think?”
And Calvin passed his swimming test. But even if he hadn’t, he grew in confidence knowing that God is with him.
We are more likely to remember something when it applies to our situation. Philippians 4:13 was meant to give Calvin confidence that he could face his fears. I didn’t choose a random verse. For example, John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” This is a beautiful and important verse to memorize, but it didn’t apply to Calvin’s situation. I intentionally chose a verse that he could relate to and he was able to remember it because it applied to his life.
Relate the verse to other people. I picked a verse that is his uncle’s favorite. This helped make it even more personal because now Calvin associates that verse with Uncle Spencer. Try to think of a person or personal story that a verse relates to and share it with your kids. Our kids should know that the people around them use and know Scripture!
This verse is also part of a VBS song from last year so Calvin immediately recognized the words when I said them. This made it easier to memorize, but it also gave him confidence because he felt smart already knowing the words. Start simple and small, picking short and easy verses that they are already a little familiar with.
We want to hear from you. What are some of the best ways that you have helped your kids memorize Scripture? Stay tuned to hear more of our (and your!) ideas!