Creative Ways to Teach Memory Verses
Teaching Memory Verses:
One of the most important things a teacher can teach children is a memory verse from Scripture. When teaching a memory verse, for the children to memorise it, they need to repeat it out loud at least 15 times! And for it to remain in their long term memory, it needs to be reviewed each Sunday for several weeks!
In Psalm 119:11, David gives us one of the reasons for his success and why God chose him to be king over Israel:
"Your Word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against You."
Memory Verse Games, Puzzles and Competitions:
In Bibleland you will find a number of memory verse puzzles for children to try out in groups or individually. Below are a number of fun methods to teach memory verses and avoid those gasps of dismay and horror! Choose teams and play them off against each other. When you make the learning process a game or a competition, children will participate willingly!
Overhead Projector Competition:
Write a verse on an overhead slide and to see which person or team can memorise a verse in the shortest time. Switch the projector on for 5, 10, 15 or 20 seconds until someone can say the verse from memory.
A cardboard circle is divided into six quadrants, each with a verse from the Way of Salvation written in it. Prepare another circle with just one quadrant cut out and fix it to the verse circle with a paper fastener so that it can rotate and display one verse at a time. Teach the children the verses and then give then each a wheel to share the Gospel with their friends.
Use a puppet to teach the memory verse to the children. Of course the puppet will get it all wrong each time and the children will have to put him right. Kids really love this one!
Make a hexagon from thick cardboard and write the memory verse references from the Salvation Wheel on each quadrant. Push a pencil through the centre and spin the top! Play this as a game and give a small prize to anybody that can say the verse that the top stops on.
Traffic Light (Robot) Competition
Make a number of sets of three coloured circles from thin card. Select a number of memory verse to write on the circles. Each Traffic Light consists of two halves of a verse and its reference. These are written on a red, yellow and green circles respectively.
Mix up the discs and give one disc to each child. When you say "Go", the children seek the other circles to complete their Traffic Light. The winner is the team who can put their verse together first.
Monk Writing Puzzle:
The verse is written out on a board but with no spaces between the words. The children individually or in teams try to decipher the verse. For example:
Write out the memory verse completely backwards on a white board or sheet of cardboard. Then let the children try to figure out what it says. For example:
"25:2 ekul nam dna dog htiw ruovaf ni dna modsiw in werg susej dna"
If they can't get it right, then tell them that this funny language is from Luke 2:52 - "And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man."
Children are called out to form a line and each person is given a card with one word from the memory verse, but in mixed-up order. A member from each team then competes for the best measured time on a stop-watch to move the people back into the correct verse order. Repeat this for each member of the teams and award the prize to the team with the lowest total time!
One way to revise a memory verse is to cut a large circle, triangle, square and other shapes from different coloured card. Write a word from the verse onto each shape and then cut them into four or five irregular jigsaw pieces. Distribute one set of the pieces to each team. Then let the teams race to finish their word.
Alternately, mix up all the pieces and distribute them among the children. Then say, "Find other children with the same colour as yours and then race to put the pieces together. The first group to finish their word will receive a prize!" You can also play this as a treasure hunt by hiding the pieces around the classroom or hall.
Then have a competition to see who can arrange the words in the correct order for the verse they previously learnt.
An object is used to teach a verse and act as a memory aid in later weeks. For example a sickly looking cardboard tongue could be used to teach, "Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies" - Psalm 34:13.
Copyright © Sharon Children's Ministries