Do you remember the ABC song? I myself memorized it many decades ago, more decades than I care to admit, but I still remember the song very, very well. What about nursery rhymes your mother chanted with you? Those are still bouncing around my head. Memorization in the homeschool works.
Because memory work isn’t something you’re able to toss in the trash. You can’t misplace it in the house. You can’t even lose it when the computer crashes.
Memory work is yours for life.
If you’re at all interested in classical education, I’m probably preaching to the choir when it comes to why you should add memory work to your homeschool. The trick of the matter is how.
Recite Piece 3 Times Aloud
One trick is to recite the piece you’re memorizing at least three times every day. Chant it together in the kitchen. Send the kids to chant the piece to each pet. Have the kids chant it to each other.
Once you get started it’s easy to chant to piece at least three times.
Reciting the piece works even better if you can chant it periodically throughout the day, however remembering to recite the piece is another matter entirely.
Best Times for Memorization in the Homeschool
One easy method to remember to complete memory work is to connect it to mealtimes. Before you sit down to eat, recite the pieces you’re memorizing three times.
If before dinner isn’t a good time to recite your pieces, focus on reciting them before breakfast and lunch. You’ll be amazed at how focused children are if they know they need to recite before they eat.
My favorite method is to use morning time for memory work. As you sit down to enjoy time learning as a family, spend a few minutes working through the pieces you’re memorizing.
Chant them together three times every day or use one of the other techniques to spice things up.
Use Music to Memorize
Have you noticed that you remember best when it’s put to music? As I mentioned before, it’s hard to forget the ABC song! What about Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star? Do you still remember that song? What about the lyrics of your favorite hits? I’ll bet you’ve had kids dancing around the house singing Let It Go or Everything Is Awesome.
Why not use some of that memorization energy for educational lists such as the Presidents of the United States, various Latin chants, and the multiplication tables! Just think, you’ll have kids dancing around singing the Presidents of the United States instead of Let It Go.
Here’s more information about Making Memorization Easy with Songs, Chants, and Jingles.
Write the Piece Daily
Memorizing poetry with small kids doesn’t lend itself to writing. But if you’re memorizing with older children, try writing the memorization work daily.
Keep in mind that it’s hard to memorize the proper spelling of words without writing them constantly. So sit down and write those spelling words in a list. Write down the charts.
Write out your poem, quotes, or list. Copy the list of Presidents of the United States one by one until it’s memorized. If you’re doubtful about the role of writing in memorization, let me ask you one question.
How many times have you written the ABCs? Writing works.
Jumping up and down while shouting out your memory work may annoy the neighbors, but it’s effective! Take the kids outside and chant the multiplication tables while jumping rope. Shoot hoops while reciting Shakespeare. Play catch while chanting Latin conjugations.
Adding physical activity helps kids with memorization in the homeschool.
There are those days you can’t get outside, so march around the house chanting. Tell the kids you’re a parade. Add drums, hats, and stuffed animals.
The kids will have a blast parading around the house while shouting their memory work.
If all else fails, try a trampoline.
The trick to memorization is to repeat the information many times in many ways. Recite it several times every day. Write the memory work out on a chalkboard, a piece of paper, or in the sand. Sing the piece while jumping on a trampoline.