As small group leaders, we face a number of challenges each week, no doubt about that! Included in that list is keeping kids engaged all month long in working on their memory verse. I LOVE working on just one verse each month, which is the way the curriculum my church uses is set up. It’s so cool to see kids going from being able to regurgitate a verse to understanding what God is teaching them in the verse to what it means for them in their world. That’s why I do what I do—and why you do what you do—to connect God to their everyday world!
BUT how can I keep it fresh for them for four to five weeks? That’s the balance! I find myself slipping into “easy” mode: going around the circle to see who can tell me the verse. It IS easy for me, but B-O-R-I-N-G for the kiddos! It can be hard for me to remember that the different way we work on this verse that week might just break the barrier for the child who hasn’t gotten the verse down yet!
My own child is a GREAT example of this for me. How does he memorize best? Let him stand on a chair and, literally, scream it at the top of his lungs. Not that I’d necessarily let a kid in my small group do that—but you get the idea. Think creative. Think interactive. Think variety!
I also need to remember that even though I am there every week, half of my group is hearing the verse for the very first time in week 3! I need to be excited about not only knowing the verse but also understanding it. I need to being willing to share with the kids how I see the verse lived out in my own life. It’s sharing those kinds of stories that help me build relationships with my group.
So how do you make the same verse even more fun on week 5 than it was week 1? Brainstorm different ways to physically work with the verse. This could include puzzles, different translations, creating the verse in different mediums (yarn, macaroni, stickers, etc), having the kids create memory verse journals, etc. Hit a different learning style each week. Then, actually discuss real life application of the verse. Talk to your few about WHY God recorded this verse for us—what is it He wants us to understand about Him and ourselves through the words He gives us!
I find the key is making the verse alive and active for the kids. Connect it to their everyday life. God wants them to make HIM a part of that every day life—and Scripture memory verses can be a big part of that. It’s up to us to engage our few by making it exciting!
What are some great memory verse activities you have discovered?