Scripture Memory With Little Children, Part 3

Joshua and me doing Bible Bee Summer Study

Part 1 and Part 2 here if you haven’t read them. You’re hearing from Anna Marie again on her Bible Memorization series: practical encouragement on hiding God’s Word.

I had fully intended to write part 3 shortly following the others; however, first trimester of pregnancy, life as a mom, and starting homeschool took over! But here I am, back to tell you how we choose, keep track of, and review our verses.
First, a brief recap:

  • Keep Dad and Mom inspired (If you haven’t already, I recommend quickly reading this free ebook download titled Whatever It Takes, from Scripture Memory Fellowship)
  • Listen to an audio Bible
  • Read personally and as a family
  • Repeat frequently
  • Sing Scripture (such as this: Amazon affiliate link which blesses the Titus2 ministry. See Titus2’s privacy policy.)
  • Write it out
  • Motivate (with a celebration, event such as Scriptorium or Bible Bee, etc.)

There are three main ways we choose passages:
1. Christopher sometimes chooses a passage for us to memorize that will meet a current character need in our family, such as Colossians 4:6,  Ephesians 4:31-32, or Philippians 2:13-14.
2. We have been working through a catechism-type question answered with a Scripture verse, that was in our Christ-Centered Curriculum lesson guide. Things such as “Who is God?” (Jeremiah 10:10) or “Name the 3 Persons of the Godhead” (1 John 5:7), etc. It starts with God, goes through creation, Christ, Christian life, and more.
3. This year we participated in the National Bible Bee Summer Study (which was excellent!) so we had two passages each week to learn with that. When we share at a Scriptorium, we choose a passage (or passages) from the Scriptorium list we want to do and then work on that as a family.

Sharing verses with a friend from church

I don’t have a perfect system for keeping track of what we have memorized. I’ve started a Google Doc and intended to add each passage to it as we go, but I’ve struggled to be consistent with that. What has worked for me the best is to write them out on index cards and keep them in a box (I got an inexpensive index card box at Walmart), then as part of our routine we have fifteen minutes of verse review where I cycle through the cards we have learned. We don’t get through them all each day, but when we are doing it regularly I know we’ll be covering them all over the course of a few days.

Joshua found this to be a good memorizing spot!

The children enjoy doing our review in Bible Bee format, where I say their name, they go stand by the fireplace, then recite the passage I give them. For instance, “Ruthanne, please recite Colossians 4:6.” She replies, “Colossians 4:6. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. Colossians 4:6.” We all clap, then she sits down, and I say the next child’s name. Saying the reference before and after the verse is required for Bible Bee, and practically speaking, it does help us all remember the references better so we incorporate that.

Right now we are finishing memorizing 2 Timothy 2 as a family for the Scriptorium in St. Louis coming up on September 14th. In this process, I’ve been reminded again of the power of listening. Ruthanne and Lydia have wanted to listen to the chapter (I set it to repeat) during their afternoon quiet playtime, and I was surprised when Lydia started quoting the chapter and went several verses beyond what we have actually “worked on.” Granted, it wasn’t word perfect, but when they are that familiar with it, they pick it up rapidly. Just an encouragement to you parents to keep that audio Scripture going for your little ones!
Speaking of the Scriptorium—This is short notice, but if you’re in that area and want to share a chapter, there are still some available to sign up for—several less than twenty verses. We have been blessed by the time of fellowship and edification around the Word at Scriptoriums in the past and would enjoy meeting you there!
God bless you,
Anna Marie

“Thy hands have made me and fashioned me:
give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.”
Psalm 119:73

County Fair Ministry Part 2

If you missed Part 1, you can read it here.

We’re grateful for opportunities to share Christ and love a whole bunch of children. The County Fair has been a channel to do just that. You should see the joy on kids’ faces after receiving their balloon creation or face paint, the eagerness with which they take the tract—opening it to browse it and telling us they would read it—the patient waiting in line, pouring over the face paint option board, and their words of gratefulness.

Since we’ve been back to the fair four years in a row, parents and children eagerly anticipate finding us. They look for where we normally are. Our desire is that those we come in contact with feel loved and ultimately the gospel is shared through tracts.

Christopher and one of his children came out several nights to witness while walking around the fair. He said the teens were the most open to the gospel.

We’re so grateful for the support of our family in this endeavor.


A happy niece with a special balloon
I think those puffer fish have to be my favorite.
One night, when I walked around at the fair, it seemed I saw a lot of octopus creations. You don’t exactly hide with them. 🙂
How is that for octopus hats?!
Anna often had quite a group around her.
Christopher and Joshua
Kids were often very much interested in their balloon creation.
Puppies still melt me.
Anna made farewell heart balloons with a message to some of her frequent flier friends.
Packing out

“But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little
children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of
such is the kingdom of God.” Luke 18:16

Waterdog Lake Near Lake City

Saturday morning, our last day in Lake City, I wanted to hike up to Waterdog Lake, a trail Anna found when researching trails. A little over 8 miles round trip with moderate elevation gain, it seemed like a perfect thing.

With going to a new area, I love the adventure of finding out where trails take us. This one proved to be gorgeous. We climbed up the side of the mountain—steep but not too steep as it wound through the woods. Aspen groves clad in their stately ivory-trunks, meadows waving their grassy covering, mountain views towering over the valleys, a stream bubbling through the thick underbrush—these were all enjoyed while we discussed many great topics. We loved our time together as sisters.

Waterdog Lake
Views on the way down
Lake City

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,
and cometh down from the Father of lights, with
whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”
James 1:17

Handies Peak

As the sun cast its golden rays, it was a beautiful sight.

To get to the trailhead for the 14er Steve and I could do, Jesse rented a jeep. We left the cabin at 4:15 a.m. and were hiking about 6:30. Because it was a short 14er—5.5 miles—we didn’t need to start hiking in the dark. 

The hike began above the treeline, and we enjoyed several varieties of beautiful wildflowers, especially in the first mile of the hike. 

We also saw a type of bird we hadn’t seen before and haven’t identified. Anyone know what they are (see the picture below)? They were lying among the rocks, and looked so much like the rocks we could hardly discern them, even when they were pointed out right next to us.

You can click into this picture to see it bigger.
Jesse Maxwell
Mary and Anna Maxwell

A little over halfway up, it appeared we could have rain moving in so Anna, Jesse, and Mary took off at a fast pace to summit in case we needed to turn back. Steve and I just continued plodding along. The weather held, and Steve and I summitted as well after three hours of hiking.

After a quick ascent, Anna took this picture of Jesse and Mary.
Steve and me coming up.
Jesse is very knowledgable of the surrounding peaks
The Maxwells on top of Handies Peak

We didn’t stay long on top because of the incoming weather, but long enough to get a few photos and take in the amazing panorama of God’s creation. The others had been there long enough to enjoy the views and get pretty cold with lower temperatures and wind.

Anna found herself a great recliner rock on the way down
Notice how much the light changed by mid-day.

For our week in Colorado, Steve planned progressively more difficult hikes every other day, with a rest day in between, to make sure his body was able to take on a 14er after his stents in March and be as acclimated to the altitude as possible. He did great and was happy to be carrying 30 pounds less body weight up the mountain too! 

If you are wondering where Sarah was for this hike, she was at the cabin working on her next book. She has developed some altitude sickness the past couple of years that make it increasingly unpleasant for her to hike at altitude. So she takes advantage of the 14er hikes to have hours of writing solitude in a writer’s paradise. She’s currently brainstorming and plotting the outline and structure for the sequel to Finding Change.

Sarah walked to a little coffee shop
Enjoying the mountain views and quietness
Jesse with the jeep

While we love 14er hikes, this is our greatest joy: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1). Part of those hikes for each of us is praise, worship, and thanksgiving to our glorious Creator.

Trusting in Jesus,

“When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers,
the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;
What is man, that thou art mindful of him?
and the son of man, that thou visitest him?”
Psalm 8:3-4

Colorado Odds and Ends

We had a delightful time in Colorado and arrived home last night. There is something refreshing about leaving your normal routine/work schedule and being away. The mountains truly are a symbol of God’s majesty. Saturday evening, we took our family photo next to a gorgeous mountain stream.

We have more hikes to share about but in the meantime, here are some random pictures.


The little grocery store wasn’t your typical store–but it had most groceries.
The girls brainstorming ideas for their Bible club.
The VRBO cabin we stayed at in Lake City.
Dad grilling for us
On our way out of the mountains, we stopped in the town we normally vacation near. Some of us went for a short little hike after church.
We enjoyed sweet fellowship with our friends outside of Denver.
We helped them with some projects, including cooking.
Jesse working
With our friends, we made desserts with at least one unusual ingredient, and then let our families vote on them.
The brothers cut and served the desserts so that things would stay more anonymous.
Yesterday, on our final leg of the trip, we stopped by friends to share a meal with them.

“Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the
glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in
the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom,
O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.”
1 Chronicles 29:11

Back to Homeschool

It’s back to homeschool for many of our readers. Time to pull out the new books, plan your schedule, and launch into an exciting year of learning! Ladies, your investment in teaching your children is priceless. Bless you.

If you need a little kick-start encouragement, check out these helps from my mom:

Managers of Their Schools

Managers of Their Schools is a practical, confidence-building book written by my parents who had 30 years’ experience. Learn more here.

For the Maxwell families, school is beginning too, so we wanted to share a peek at the new students. We love seeing second-generation homeschoolers.

Anna Marie with her crew

“And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children,
and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house,
and when thou walkest by the way, and
when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”
Deuteronomy 6:7

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