Word Art Project to Aid Scripture Memory

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Memory verse activity for Joshua 1:9

To help the children at our Vacation Bible School memorize and reflect on our theme verse, Joshua 1:9, I set up a word art learning provocation to inspire their original projects.  This project targeted Kindergarten-5th graders, but the 3rd-5th graders seemed especially engaged in their work!

Have I not commanded you- Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified.  Do not be discouraged.  For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.  Joshua 1:9

Invitation to create word art based on Joshua 1:9
Invitation to create word art based on Joshua 1:9

Here are just a few samples of the children’s work.  It was so fun to see their individual interpretations.  I love all the color and the picture of Jesus drawn by a 7-year-old.

Sample work from k-5th grade children asked to respond to Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and courageous..."
Sample work from k-5th grade children asked to respond to Joshua 1:9 “Be strong and courageous…”

For the preschool children, I adapted this project by creating a simple coloring page which they colored with crayon and then painted with watercolor to create a wax resist.

Preschool adaptation of Strong and Courageous Word Art
Preschool adaptation of Strong and Courageous Word Art

In addition to this art project, we also taught the children motions to this verse, practiced reciting it throughout VBS through speaking and song, and talked about the significance of the meaning of these words in our lives.  The preschool children also recited portions of the verse during one of their games using a parachute.  By the end of our VBS weekend, my three year old daughter was reciting most of the verse by memory.

I wanted to engage all the senses in Scripture memory.  So often we focus on rote learning and repetition to memorize Scripture, but engaging all the senses helps the all important words of Scripture permeate our minds locking in Truth in ways perhaps even beyond our understanding.

Completed projects were displayed in our church foyer so our entire congregation could see the children’s work.  If you look closely at the display, you can see that some of the kids just didn’t get the concept and just drew a picture or placed some letters on a paper, but some of the children went beyond the specific Scripture to express their feelings about God beautifully.  This is one of the reasons I love offering open ended projects to the children in our ministry.  It helps know where they are and continually gives them opportunity to express their unique response to God.

Artwork Displayed Gallery style during VBS wrap-up on Sunday morning
Artwork Displayed Gallery style during VBS wrap-up on Sunday morning

If you work with children helping them memorize scripture, you may be interested in this article from What’s Up Fagans, Five Ways of Memorizing Scripture with your Kids.  Or, if you want to explore the idea of learning Scripture through visual art, check out the Verses Project here.

This post is part of a series about our Weekend Vacation Bible School experiment, to find out more about our Vacation Bible School experience check out this post.

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