Mimi Rothschild Asks: How to Teach Preschoolers to Memorize the Ten Commandments

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How to Teach Preschoolers to Memorize the Ten Commandments
by Denise Oliveri

Children need to learn the Ten Commandments. It says in Deuteronomy 6:7 “And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children and shalt talk of them.”

Preschoolers are very visual. They learn better by seeing things as well as being told. If you want them to memorize the Ten Commandments just saying them over and over is not going to do it effectively. You will need to create visual representations for them to remember them easier.

Flash Cards Help Teach the Ten Commandments

Create some flash cards for your preschoolers. On one side put one of the Ten Commandments. On the other side put a picture representation. Teach the preschoolers the picture representation and say the commandment that goes with it.

You shall have no other gods before Me. God should be Number One. Draw a 1st place ribbon.

You shall not make yourself any graven image. Do not bow down to anything or any one but God. Draw a person kneeling before a statue.

You shall not take the Name of the Lord your God in vain. Do not use your lips to dishonor God. Draw some goofy looking lips.

Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy. Do not neglect the things of God. Draw a Bible.

Honor your Father and your Mother. Dads and moms are special people that God put in charge of you for teaching and to care for your physical and spiritual needs. Draw a picture of a mom and dad.

You shall not kill. This is wrong. Draw a cartoony bomb.

You shall not commit adultery. Adultery leaves a heart broken. Draw a heart ripped in two.

You shall not steal. Stealing is wrong. Draw a cartoon robber.

You shall not lie. Telling lies can lead to a very bad habit. Draw a “lying” number nine.

You shall not covet. Do not long for what others have, and forget the blessings that you have. Draw a fancy ring with a man reaching for it.

Singing Helps Teach the Ten Commandments

Another way to teach preschoolers to memorize the Ten Commandments is to sing them. If you know the well-known children’s counting song “Ten Little Indians,” put the music to the words of the Ten Commandments. Using this in combination with the flash cards, the preschoolers will memorize the Ten Commandments in no time.

An example of a verse would be: Hon-or your fath-er and your moth-er, Hon-or your fath-er and your moth-er, Hon-or your fath-er and your moth-er, This is com-mand-ment five.

Memorizing the Ten Commandments does not have to be tedious and difficult. Make it fun for the preschoolers and they will memorize them without even knowing it.

Make Learning the Ten Commandments Fun

Print out some coloring pages of the Ten Commandments and have the preschoolers color them. The time they spend coloring the picture will put that picture in their heads with the commandment attached to it. It may seem simple, but works very well with this age group. Perhaps that is why there are so many places to print free coloring pages on the web, eh?

Another method uses the child’s fingers:

#1 – Have no other gods (God is #1, hold up one finger)

#2 Do not worship idols (two fingers “bow down”)

#3 Do not misuse God’s name (three fingers over your mouth), etc.

Use your imagination. Preschoolers love finger games. This is a good way for them to memorize the Ten Commandments and in numerical order.

It is also important for preschoolers to learn the Ten Commandments and what they mean, not just memorizing them. You can put each commandment into an easy to understand format for a preschooler to understand. Have them repeat the meaning back to you. Making this into a rhyme works great, and easy for preschoolers to remember.

God gave us the Ten Commandments so we would live our lives growing closer to Him. They are an important part of knowing right from wrong. Preschoolers are at the perfect age to learn and practice right from wrong. With your role as a Sunday school teacher, you can accomplish this in a memorable and imaginative way.

Denise Oliveri is the owner of Preschool Sunday School Central (http://www.psscentral.com). The site provides preschool Sunday School teachers wtih valuable resources to help with Bible lesson planning. Join our eBook Club today for a new eBook each month.

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