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MONDAY MATERIALS: “Scripture Mastery Verse” Songbooks

Overview -- SMV Study

In October 2011, a leader from our Church named Richard G. Scott broadcasted a talk entitled, “The Power of Scripture.*”  As I watched his presentation, I remembered being told several years earlier about free downloadable songs that could be used to learn Scripture Mastery Verses (the 100 key verses young people of our faith strive to understand and to commit to memory).  The girls were five (5) and had proven they could learn anything set to music and I – having joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as an adult in 2001 – wanted to find an engaging way to learn these important verses, too.  I “googled” “sons of ammon scripture mastery songs” and found the following page http://lds.about.com/od/seminary/a/scripture_songs.htm where we were able to both (1) access the downloads (to put on our iPod) and (2) play each individual song directly through our computer.  We set a plan for gently learning all the verses and began…

Bible -- SMV LabelsBecause the girls were five (5) and their vision was good, I took a set of scriptures and used post-its to mark the locations of all of our target verses.  When possible, we used large-print scriptures.  We also made boxes around the individual verses on their respective pages.  Each morning after we finished reading a chapter of scripture together, we would work on learning three new Scripture Mastery verses, singing each verse three times while following along in our scriptures before moving on to the rest of our day.  For example, we would sing:

  • Verse 1, Verse 1, Verse 1
  • Verse 2, Verse 2, Verse 2
  • Verse 3, Verse 3, Verse 3

Then we would move on to other activities.

When we could sing a verse from memory without following along in our scriptures, we would sing that verse a single time (for review) and then creep forward as thus:

  • Verse 1
  • Verse 2, Verse 2, Verse 2
  • Verse 3, Verse 3, Verse 3
  • Verse 4, Verse 4, Verse 4

etc.

Open BOM -- SMV HighlightedSometimes they didn’t feel like following along with the printed words and sometimes they didn’t feel like singing along.  That was okay because they were still receiving daily reinforcement.  Gradually, the “boxed in” verses were “mastered” and highlighted in yellow because they had become “celestial” verses, ours forever!  It was fun to hear the girls humming the songs around the house and to hear one report that, “The songs get stuck in my head like commercials.”  I noticed myself waking up with specific songs/verses running through my mind, usually tailored to my current mental/emotional/spiritual state.  It was a “kick” to have the girls nudge me during Sacrament meetings to grin broadly and whisper, “Scripture Mastery Verse!”  And I was personally amazed at how frequently Scripture Mastery Verses are quoted in General Conference broadcasts made by the Church!  Another happy benefit was that the girls’ reading skills improved dramatically…  Even our more active, wigglier twin began reading fluently.

When I was called to work with Primary children (especially Nursery children ages 18 months through three (3) years), I came to realize children much younger than five (5) could probably learn these verses, too, so I made up some little Photo Album Books (PABs) with “song” lyrics, as pictured below:

SMV PAB BindingsMatthew, Chapter 5, Verses 14-16The photo albums cost $2-$3 apiece at Walmart and, to increase visual appeal, I affixed clear Scripture Mastery Stickers purchased from Deseret Book** to pieces of white cardstock and used them as facing pages.  The girls – even at seven (7) – like these.

Should anyone wish to save themselves some typing by obtaining attachments of these “Lyric Cards,” please e-mail a request to “learningwindowsforlife (at) gmail (dot) com” with “Scripture Mastery Verse PABs” in the subject line.  You should be able to simply (1) print them out on cardstock, (2) trim them to size and (3) insert them into inexpensive 4″x6″ photo albums.  I also chose to paint labels on our album covers with correction fluid.

While the “Book of Mormon” and “Doctrine & Covenants” Photo Album Books (PABs) will appeal most to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the “Old Testament” and “New Testament” PABs should be valuable for all Christians who study from the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible.  Please feel free to share this information liberally.  The more people having committed scriptural truths to memory, the better!

 

*Richard G. Scott’s talk can be read, watched or listened to via https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2011/10/the-power-of-scripture?lang=eng.  Christians of all denominations can benefit from his words.

**Scripture Mastery Stickers can be purchased from http://deseretbook.com/Scripture-Stickers-Seminary-Series-Complete-Set/i/4487843.  We purchased this complete set, but they are also available as sets of just “Old Testament,” “New Testament,” “Book of Mormon” or “Doctrine and Covenants.”  Deseret Book regularly offers discount codes for between 10-30% off (sometimes with free shipping) if you sign up for their e-mail notifications.

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