Wednesday, October 15, 2008

morning memory work

One of our family's favorite rituals is going over our memory work after breakfast. We're big believers in memorization. Fortunately, our church is also big on it and our boys love it. Their little brains are like sponges, soaking it up--often without even knowing it. Many times their ability to repeat a verse outshines their comprehension of its meaning. That's okay with us. The understanding will come. In addition to memorizing scripture verses, our family also commits to memory what we consider to be faithful summaries of scripture, primarily the Apostles' Creed and the Heidelberg Catechism. It is only within the last few years of our life that we have begun working with our kids in memorizing these things, but the fruit has been very compelling. I can't even count how many times I've heard these words repeated in their prayers. They've taken these teachings and not only memorized them, but in time have come understand them well enough to use them as they pray doctrinally sound prayers. And we're big on doctrinally sound prayers.

For a few years now, our family has recited the Lord's Prayer every Sunday along with our congregation as part of our morning worship service. In a similar manner, we recite the Apostles' Creed every Sunday in the evening service.

We'd never specifically worked with Ethan on the Apostles' Creed, but yesterday morning we figured we'd see how much of it had soaked in over the past few years. Might as well try the Lord's Prayer too.

I'm often reminded of the old adage that more is caught than taught. Here's another example from Ebo. It's funny that he has perhaps 25% of the actual words memorized, but has the cadence and sound of the syllables down pretty well. It's also curious that, never being one to waste even a second, he tries to get words out while both exhaling AND inhaling, often to hilarious effect.

Also, I just want to make clear that this is far more a product of consistent family ritual than of any kind of prodigious intelligence on Ebo's part. The other day after gymnastics, Ethan's teacher mentioned to Amy that that "he may be colorblind" because he was often incapable of following directions when running over to a certain color was part of the activity. We were a little concerned so we ran some nonscientific tests at home. Turns out that Ethan is not colorblind. He just hasn't sorted out which ocular experience goes with the labels blue, green, yellow, etc.


Joyce said...

Very, very good! That was wonderful.

I can see how very pleased Ethan was with the family's congratulations, too. What a sweetie!

KAMILLE said...

How amazing Ethan! What a great job on his part and the part you as parents & the community of faith have played in him knowing this. I also love how perked up he got when he knew he did something amazing as the family applauded him.

Kevin Efflandt said...

Awesome job, Ethan!! I'm really going to miss our post-service conversations for the next few weeks.