Friday, August 22, 2014

Keep the Sabbath Day Holy - Singing Time Review Songs

I always liked to do a fun review of all the primary songs on one of the last Sundays of the month, to make sure the children haven't forgotten the songs that they have been learning for the program.

This Sunday's theme is about keeping the Sabbath Day Holy. Our primary children have been a bit rambunctious lately too, so the timing couldn't be better to talk about this wonderful topic.

I'd like to recommend an idea that I'm actually going to be teaching as part of the lesson, but if I were still a chorister ... I'd do this instead.

Take seven paper plates, and decorate them to look like the earth. Each paper plate represents each of the six days that it took to create the earth, and the seventh day of rest. Associate each "day" with one of our primary songs that we have been learning.

Here's the fun part - what to do with all these earths. I can think of a few fun visuals but right now, I'm leaning toward having a symbol that depicts what happened on that day, and letting the children match the symbol with the earth, and then singing that song.

This sounds a lot harder than it is, because to match the items, there will be easy hints. These are just images I grabbed off the Internet to illustrate the idea, since I haven't made anything yet. Another thought is that instead of making seven of the same earths and matching them to a picture of "what happened that day," it could also be one half of the same picture, for junior primary, but with the same matching questions.



 
Day 1 - "I'll seek the Lord early while ..."
 
"... in my youth."

Made Day and Night
 
Day 2 - "How could the Father tell the world, of love and tenderness?"
 

"He sent his son a newborn baby, with peace ..."

Made the Sky

Day 1 - He created Light and Dark.
I'd draw a circle that was half black, half yellow. Then, the hint would be that on the earth, it would say, "I'll seek the Lord early while" and the hint on the half black, half yellow circle would say, "in my youth."

Day 2 - He made the sky.
I'd draw a big puffy sky. Then, the hint for the matching earth would be on one side, "How could the Father tell the world, of love and tenderness?" The answer on the other side would be, "He sent his son a newborn babe, with peace ..."

Make sense?

I'd hoped to put up real images. This is simpler than it looks. This is how I interpret Genesis 1 and 2 so be careful that you agree:

Day 3 - Made land, seas, grass, herbs, seeds.

Day 4 - Made lights to divide day and night, seasons, moon, stars

Day 5 - Made water, water animals, birds

Day 6 - Made land creatures, man

Day 7 - He rested

Tell the children the object is to match up all seven earths, so that they can also REST. Each earth is either a song, or a question about how they can keep the Sabbath Day holy. If they don't make a match on their turn, then they also have to give an example of activities that are good to do on the Sabbath.


Sunday, August 3, 2014

Singing Time Focused Around Lesson Topic - Family Prayer

There are so many fun ways to teach music this month, focused on the August theme, "Participating in Wholesome Activities Will Strengthen My Family."

The Week 1 Lesson is about Family Prayer, and gives the suggestion to invite children to "share something he or she might thank or ask Heavenly Father for in family prayer."

The children already know so many wonderful songs about prayer, why not combine the sharing time and singing time lessons to help emphasize this point.

Use the wonderful resources in the LDS Media Library on the topic of prayer to print out a picture, to cut up like a puzzle.

The list of https://www.lds.org/children/resources/topics/family-prayer

Then, put the following items on the back of each puzzle - either a question, or a song to sing. If they get a quote, then they just have to read the quote:

Quote #1
“When I was a little child, my parents taught me by example to pray. I began with a picture in my mind of Heavenly Father being far away. As I have matured, my experience with prayer has changed. The picture in my mind has become one of a Heavenly Father who is close by, who is bathed in a bright light, and who knows me perfectly.”
—Henry B. Eyring
“Exhort Them to Pray,” Ensign, Feb. 2012, 4

Quote #2
We can pray each morning to recognize opportunities to serve others. “Heavenly Father will guide you, and angels will assist you,” said David L. Beck, Young Men general president. “You will be given power to bless lives and rescue souls.”
3 -- (June 2014 visiting teaching message)

Quote #3
“Successful … families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities.” (Prayer, LDS.org)

Quote#4
“The Savior told us, ‘Pray in your families unto the Father, always in my name” (3 Nephi 18:21). In our day, the Church urges us to have family prayer every night and every morning. … Family prayer is a powerful and sustaining influence [a long-lasting power to help us change for good]. – President James E. Faust, April 2002 General Conference (1920-2007)

Question #1
In family prayer, we thank Heavenly Father for our blessings and ask Him to help and bless our families.
What could you THANK Heavenly Father for in family prayer?

Question #2
In family prayer, we thank Heavenly Father for our blessings and ask Him to help and bless our families.
What could you ASK Heavenly Father for in family prayer?

Song #1
(Write down song titles from the various prayer songs listed above.)

Song Trivia
Finish the sentence. "I'll seek the Lord _______ while in my _______"

Friday, June 20, 2014

Paper Doll Singing Time - Song Review or to Continue Learning a Song

I have been so aware of the Family theme all year, and am loving it. I hope the lessons that are being taught are sinking in as much for the children as for the leaders. I was thinking it would be fun to have a singing time activity around Paper Dolls, aka, Little Families :)

You can do this as either a song review or to continue learning this month's song. (I share how to make a paper doll at the bottom of this post.)

As a song review, each set of paper dolls could represent one of the songs that we have been working on toward the primary program. However, rather than writing the name of the song, to make it harder (second picture below), write a line from the song on the paper doll.

To continue learning a song (instead of as an overall song review), each set of paper dolls has a line of the same song on it.



As a song review, children would first have to identify the song, and fill in any empty lines on the paper doll (helps them with remembering specific lyrics), and then sing the song as a primary.

To continue learning the same song, children would be required to sing up to the point in the song they are learning, that the doll they chose represents OR fill in a missing word on that song, then put the paper dolls up IN ORDER so that by the end of singing time, the dolls are in the order of the lyrics of the song.

The object of the game would be to sing enough songs to be able to string the dolls across a poster (or a drawing on the chalkboard). Children earn the right to put the doll on the poster by correctly guessing the song, then singing the song with the primary.

For example, you could draw a simple picture on the chalkboard and say you have a family member that is lost, but if everyone holds hands, you can get them all back home. (i.e., sing enough songs by choosing enough paper dolls to string them across the poster).



You could actually put the dolls up on the board so that the hand of the paper doll from one set has to touch the hand of the paper doll from the next set. Some other fun themes would be stringing them across the river, like pioneers helping each other across, or stringing them across a drawing of the earth because we are all children of God, no matter where we are from.

Since paper dolls are easy to make, you can even send the children home with their own sheet of paper to cut out their own paper doll, as an incentive. Maybe write the names of the songs around the edges of the outline of the paper doll.

Conclude by sharing your testimony about Heavenly Father's plan as it relates to being children of God and each other's families.

How to Make a Paper Doll

1. Take a sheet of paper, and fold it back and forth, accordion-style, making about four or five folds in the paper.



2. Once your paper is folded, draw your "doll" on it, making sure the arms go to the ends of its fold.



3. Cut your doll out, making sure to cut the arms out to the edge of the paper. That's it! You're done. Unfold to see your results.



4. Write the name of the song, or a line of a song, or even a question about the song on each set of dolls, and you're ready to go!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Family History - I am Doing It - new flip chart!!

Wow, can you believe it's already June???

I'd love to hear what songs your ward primaries chose for the "free choice" June selection around priesthood ordinances and temple work, and how it can bless your family. Our ward primary will be singing "Family History - I am Doing it."

I compiled a new *flip chart for both verses of this song in honor of the new month and new song, since as far as I know, our primary has not sung this song in years! Here's a sneak preview of just some of the pages:



Go here to print your own copy, or send me your email address, and I'll try to pay attention to new requests!

*“Children’s Songbook,” page 94
Words
and music: Jeanne P. Lawler, b. 1924. (c) 1982 IRI; revised
Art from
https://www.lds.org/media-library/images/categories/gospel-art?lang=eng

This flip chart contains words and images for noncommercial church or home use. This notice must be used on each copy made. 



Saturday, May 24, 2014

Singing Time Song Review (and lesson review) for the Last Five Months

** Revised 5/25 evening! Our primary chorister did this today, and as a result, I added some modifications in italics.

++++++++++++++++++++

This idea is a song review that helps the children to think about what they have learned in the last five months. The game is based on helping to cement the correlation between the sharing time lesson and the singing time lesson for each week, from the last five months.



This game is a Jeopardy of sorts, where each category is from each month, and the answers are from the song. I've put the questions and answers in the chart below. Everything in ( ) is for your reference only, and should not be on the questions that the children see.

Put the headlines and questions up on a board (the items in bold in the table below) and let children decide which paper to flip over to answer.

It's important not to forget to SING during Singing Time so the object of the game would be to figure out the song that each column represents, and then to sing the song. One way to do this is to have them guess and sing the song after getting THREE of the questions in the column answered correctly since you won't have time to get through all of these questions in a 20-minute singing time.

Or, another way is: put different points on the back: 100, 200, 300, etc. If the children want to guess and sing the song for a column they can earn an additional 500 points. Tell them the goal is to, as a group, get up to 3000 points by the end of singing time. I strongly discourage making this a competition against each side of the room. It tends to drive the spirit out of the room, and I assume for that reason, we are counseled not to use competitions in our lessons. However, if you give them a group goal, they have fun with it, without the meanness that sometimes happens with competition. You can even give them the scenario that they are a big family and you want everyone to make it to the end together, as a family.

*** The children ended up singing less than we would have liked so to get more actual singing in, I would modify this so that the children can guess the song after each question. Give them a few tries to get the answer right and then if they do, let them sing the song. They can still answer the questions in the column, but this way you can ensure more singing.

***** Our awesome chorister added in a "lightning round" where children could answer all of the question in one column and earn a ton of points at once.  This was helpful because there were way more questions than could be answered in 20 minutes.


January –
Heavenly Father Prepared a Way for  Me to Return to His Presence

(34 - "He Sent His Son")
February –
Heavenly Father has a Plan for His Children



(164-165 - "I Will Follow God's Plan")
March- Jesus Christ is Our Savior




(193 - "I Stand All Amazed")
April – The Family is Central to God’s Plan




("The Family is of God")
May – Families are Blessed when they Follow the Prophet


(Ward Primary's Choice, ours is "The Prophet Said to Plant a Garden")
Who did Heavenly Father send to tell the world the pathway we should go? 


(Jesus)

(week 2 lesson - Heavenly Father provide a Savior and makes it possible for me to return to his presence)
Where did the plan for my life begin?



Hint: My life has a plan. My life has a purpose; in ______ it began.

(heaven)
(week 1 lesson: Heavenly Father has a plan for his Children)

Our Savior died on the cross. Who did he die for?



(for me! all of us!)
Hint: I tremble to know that for ___ he was crucified.

(week 2 lesson: Through the atonement of Jesus Christ I can repent and be forgiven of my sins.)
Fill in the blank.
The f___ is c_____ to God' plan.



(The family is central to God's plan - week 1 lesson.)
How does God speak to us in modern day? 




(through prophets)
(week 1 lesson)

Hint: (In our primary, the song is "The prophet said to plant a garden" so our hint would be: "In modern-day revelation, who said to plant a garden?"
How could the Father tell the world of sacrifice, of death?

(He sent his son to die for us.)

(week 2 lesson)

What choice did  I make in Heaven?



(to come to this lovely home on earth and seek for God's light to direct me from birth ... or they could just say, "gain a mortal body" :) )

(week 2 lesson: Heavenly Father commanded Jesus Christ to create the earth as a home for his children.)
Where was our Savior before he came to earth to be crucified?

(with our Father in Heaven)
Hint: I marvel that he would descend from __ ___ _____ To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine.
Why did God give us families?




Hint: "God gave us families to help us become _________ (what he wants us to be.)

(To help us learn how love, serve, and care for each other, and be an example to each other.)
There are many of these in the scriptures that are examples to our families. Some of their names were:
Nephi, Noah, Daniel, Samuel the Lamanite. Who are they? 

(Prophets)
(week 2 lesson)
What does the Father ask of us? What do the scriptures say?




(Have faith, have hope, live like his Son, help others on their way.)

(week 4 lesson - I can return to Heavenly Father by following Jesus Christ)
How can I follow God's plan - what do I need to hold fast to?




 (Holding fast to his word and his love ... or they could just say, "obey the commandments, listen to counsel in the scriptures ... etc.) 

(week 4 lesson: Agency is the gift to choose for myself)
Why did the Savior die for us?
Hint: Oh it is wonderful that he should care for me Enough to die for me!

(He cares for us/loves us.)
What are a father and mother's role in the family?





(Week 2 lesson)

Hint: A father's place is to (preside, provide, To love and teach the gospel). A mother's place is to (care, prepare, To nurture and to strengthen all her children).

(To lead and guide the family).
My family will be blessed as we follow who?






(the Prophet)

(week three lesson)


Who does Heavenly Father ask us to live like so that we can return and be with him again some day?


(Live like his Son)

(week 3 lesson - Jesus Christ is the perfect example for me to follow)
In whose footsteps should I follow to be happy on earth. Hint: "I will work, and I will pray; I will always walk in his way. Then I will be happy on earth."

(week 4 lesson)
I can show respect for the Savior by being reverent. Give some examples of how you can be reverent.



(This is from lesson 4 in March.)
What are the children's role in a family?








(week 3 lesson)

Hint: "I'll (love) and (serve) my family and be A good (example) to each fam'ly member."

Answer: Obey parents. Love and serve family.

Who speaks to us every six months at General Conference? 







(the prophet)

(week four lesson)















Thursday, April 17, 2014

"The Family" Paper Bag Puppets

I made these puppets for a sharing time lesson but I realize they can be used effectively during Singing Time as well. I figured out that I can post PDF files directly to my blog if I use WordPress ... so you can download the template for these puppets at my other blog, Ilovetocreatestuff.com

.

Some ideas for how to use these puppets:

1. Color the hair different bright colors. Invite the teachers to come up and help you. They will then randomly hold up their puppet during the song, and have their puppet "sing." Whenever a child has on the same clothes colors as the color of the hair (colored in purple, green, blue, yellow, brown ...), they get to sing too.

2. Use a boy puppet and a girl puppet to indicate when boys sing the song vs. when girls sing the song.

3. You can write stuff on the body of the puppet and use the puppets to indicate when the children should sing loudly vs. softly.

4. Integrate this month's song, "The Family is of God," by having six reverent children come up, and then letting them hold up their puppets at appropriate parts of the song. You can add images to the body of the puppet to represent some of the lines of the song, for example, show a father presiding over family home evening, or show a mother helping her child with homework ...

Friday, April 11, 2014

Fun Printable Cards to Use in Singing Time

I found this cute printable on what I believe is a vacation/travel site for the LA/Disneyland area so pardon the random link, but I thought these printable pics would translate easily into a no-fuss primary singing time activity. There are 48 cards in total, with one word and one simple picture, including: princess, giant, bones, ice cream, plane, surfboard ...

Ways to Use These Cards:

1. Fun way to sing a song - they have to figure out how to sing "The Family is of God," for instance, while on a plane, or while pretending to eat ice cream ("The family" - lick - "is of" - lick - ...).

2. Use the colors on the cards - the images are just for fun, but everyone in the room wearing the colors on the card that is drawn has to ... get up and sing the song at the front of the room together ... or pat their heads while they sing, etc. This works because most of the cards only use a few different colors, tops.

3. Us for practicing volume or speed or another "real" singing element, e.g., if they choose the "alligator" card they can practice crescendo and decrescendo. If they choose the "princess" card they can practice enunciation.

4. The object of the game is to find answers to some gospel questions, which are in primary song titles. So, take the blank tiles that come with these templates and write in the songs that you have been teaching, for example, "The Family is of God," "I Stand All Amazed." Then have five questions on the board, like "Which song talks about families?" or "Jesus Christ died for me. What song shares this awe for what he did for us?" Then, use just a few of the more appropriate "fun" tiles and mix them in there with the "right" tiles. The kids have a goal to answer the questions by drawing the right pieces before the end of Singing Time. If they draw the wrong piece, there could be a consequence, like maybe they have to answer a question about a line of the song.

One day when I am feeling more ambitious, I might actually make my own cards and have the kids string together something a little closer to what the site originally suggested the cards were for ... though I could see that getting out of hand, too! I have a small game of dice that uses this exact same concept, and there's a good primary singing time activity there as well.