The popular Bible Bee succeeds in getting children to memorize large portions of Scripture because of the competitive aspect of the activity. When the kids and I worked through the activities in How to Develop a Brilliant Memory, comparisons were naturally made, though I didn’t encourage them. While it resulted in some tears, it also motivated my kids to improve their skills. If competition doesn’t work for your family, offer a reward. That’s why competition works anyway; the reward is the placing and admiration you receive. My son memorized all the countries in Europe alphabetically to get a sweet treat and to get the appreciation of his peers.
Put it all together
Here is how we memorize in our family. We review together thoroughly and then give individuals who want one an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge. The kids honestly “fight” for the right to do this. We memorize Bible books and Word Roots (using English from the Roots Up Flashcards, Vol. 1) this way and we plan to memorize many facts together next fall using Classical Conversations.
What has helped your children commit things to memory?
After teaching my daughter the Learn Math Fast method for subtracting single digit numbers, my daughter came up with this slightly different approach. Of course, we want kids to have these math facts memorized, but in the meantime, it’s helpful for them to have a quick method for solving the problems.
Without any prompting from me, my daughter started teaching her younger brother and her friend “her method” for subtracting single digit numbers. She was so excited about math! Why? I would argue that she feels competent. We are always more motivated to pursue activities we feel capable in. If your child is struggling in a subject, have him teach someone who is behind him in ability. Or consider letting your child make a YouTube video!
The added benefit of letting your child teach is the learners get motivated, too. My daughter’s friend was very excited about this math method and the video they made of it. You still have time to enter the Learn Math Fast giveaway!
Have you had success having your child teach a subject? Tell us about it!
There are a number of great resources for teaching apologetics today and what a blessing that is! As a Christian homeschooler who believes in a literal interpretation of Genesis, I am a huge fan of Answers for Kids. While it’s listed as appropriate for ages 8-11, I have used it comfortably with my five youngest, ages 5-13. Few Bible curriculums I have used are as well suited to multiple ages.
One of the best features of the curriculum for us is that it includes colorful graphics on the included CD that grab my kids’ attention. We attach our laptop to our TV in the school room so everyone can see. Doing this also allows us to quickly read the associated Bible passages online. I have my kids take turns reading them and treat doing so as a privilege to be earned once he can read. I have just one more child to go!
Another excellent feature of Answers for Kids is the repetition. We use a number of different resources for teaching Bible and don’t use them every day. The review is a refresher for the kids and me, too!
I consider myself fairly knowledgeable in apologetics, but I have learned new things as I’ve taught the kids. In fact, sometimes the kids have to try to get my attention as I start reading without them! This relates to why I think Answers for Kids is a great Motivated Homeschooler resource: Motivated teachers beget motivated students. If you love it, your kids are likely to love it, too.
Our duty as Christian homeschoolers isn’t just to shelter and protect, but also to equip them to defend their faith.
Finally, this curriculum addresses the challenges to faith our kids are likely to encounter in the future. Answers for Kids is an excellent elementary to junior high weapon for spiritual warfare. Answers in Genesis has a number of other materials I would recommend.