Friday, November 16, 2018

Children All Over the World Flipchart for Thanksgiving

I made a new flipchart! It has been a long time.

You can download it here.

If you have difficulty with downloading from Box, you are also welcome to email me for a copy.

Here's a little preview of some of the pages. I used a flag for each language, plus a tiny note in the corner about the language that is being represented.

Art (except flags) from:
Children’s Songbook, page 16
Words: Peggy Hill Ryskamp, b. 1949. © 1975 IRI

Music: Beth Groberg Stratton, b. 1944. © 1975 IRI

Esther is the author of "My Nativity 1-2-3s" and "My Nativity ABCs" available at Deseret Book, Seagull Book, and all Costco locations in the Rocky Mountains. 

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Free General Conference Activity Packet!

I made a General Conference packet for my Primary kids.
You are welcome to download and use it, too! Download it here.
I try to have a music slant on my activity packets since the children learn so much from music. However, there are also original coloring pages from artists Alex Worthen and Robert Davis in there, a leader chart, etc.

Sample Pages here:


Or scroll through the whole packet here.

Download it here.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Primary Program Song Review - New twist on "Name that Song" and "Opposites" sides singing!

Our Primary chorister made up two fun activities to review lyrics today, to get ready for the Primary Program (which is at the end of this month in our ward). This was such a fun activity.  The kids loved it, and it made them think about the lyrics. He combined two fun activities, one to decide on the song, and then another to sing the verse of a song.

First, to choose a song, a children came to the front of the room and pulled a slip of paper out of a box. The paper listed a line from a song. The Primary then had to identify the name of the song and the verse in which the song came from!

To make it easier, our chorister (Blake), made three different sets of slips that he rated as "easy," "medium," and "hard." This way, he could choose which box to let people choose from based on his assessment of how well they were doing with guessing.

For example, can you guess the song and verse for this line?

Answer: "I am a child of God" verse 3! Here are the other two sets of slips.

Blake kindly let me take a picture of all of the lines he chose so that if you do this, you can use the same set!

Blake put opposing sides on each side of a stick. He flipped the stick back and forth as the children sang. I've seen and personally done different versions of this too, but the way he chose to do it was just super fun for the kids. It worked really well. So, in the pics below, I've taken the pic from one side, then flipped all the sticks. East vs. West (different sides of the room), Back vs Front (back two rows vs. front two rows of the room), etc. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The Big Review!! Getting ready for the Primary program. Working on trouble lines.

Our ward's Primary program is coming up at the end of this month! Do you feel like your children know the lines of each song well?

The key to working on trouble spots is to find fun ways to get children to think about the words of the song and fun ways to practice repetition with a trouble spot. From personal experience, these were all particularly effective and fun song reviews for working on lyrics and memorization.

Senior Primary

Helmet Hero - This way, Primary kids were all staring at the phrase and thinking about it, and the kid in front was concentrating heavily as well. (Could be used in Junior if you have the child leave the room and tell the other children what the word says - since they can't all read.)

Senior or Junior Primary

Echo Chamber - This gets all the children out of their seats and focuses on repetition in a fun way. Also, this one takes NO ADVANCED PREP!

Secret Word - In the version I shared in this old post, I was going for words that were repeated often. However, if you have a song with trouble spots, I would focus on that word being the secret word. Even if it only gets said once, children will notice if a class suddenly does something funny or interesting right when that word or phrase is sung. Again, this gets children to concentrate. You can also modify this and use an image that might not be obvious but is a secret image that goes with the mystery line.

Red Light, Green Light - This one is great because it's easy to re-use, and makes the children think about the words of the song as they are humming or not singing.

Junior Primary

Singing Elephant - This one is only effective if you pull it out rarely so it's a special treat, and I would use it once children know the words fairly well.

What are your most effective song review activities?

Thursday, April 19, 2018

General Conference Cards

I cut out General Conference cards for each of my Primary kids (even though Sunbeams - though I'm guessing these won't last long for them) and am still referring to them in lessons.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Getting Ready for Father's Day and Mother's Day!

You have four Sundays left to practice Mother's Day songs, and then it's Father's Day!! Ah, Primary chorister life.

Just wanted to remind you (as my Primary counselor reminded me on Sunday) that there are also some great grandparent songs in the Children's songbook!!!

I'd love to sing a Mother's Day song and a Grandmother song to honor all of our mothers that are grandparents, too.