Sunday, July 15, 2012

Learning "When I Am Baptized"

I just found this draft for a post that I never published. Better late than never? I obviously meant to publish it over a month ago ...

The theme for this month is Repentance and Baptism, so the theme song is "When I Am Baptized." The children already know this song, and in fact, it is a favorite of several of the youngest children that learned this song last year. There is a whole new group of three-year-olds that never learned the song, though, so I am would like to help them learn it this week.

Junior Primary Activity #1 - Introduce "When I Am Baptized"
I will draw pictures on the chalkboard and ask children to raise their hand as they recognize what song I am drawing. I like to draw, but even if you don't, this will be easy because each line of the song can be so easily represented by a simple object.

"I like to look for rainbows" - draw a rainbow

"Whenever there is rain" - draw a cloud with rain coming out

"And ponder on the beauty of an earth made clean again" - draw the earth

I will then say, "keep your hands up if you want me to call on you to guess the song."

Talk to the children about what it means to be baptized.

Junior Primary Activity #2 - Learn "When I Am Baptized"
To help the three-year-olds to catch up to the older children on learning this song, I would like to have them help me invite hand movements that represent each line of the song. That's it! Simple, fun, and easy.

We talked about this activity in our Stake Primary Chorister training, but I have also read about it before. I think our instructor that day may have learned this at Worldwide Chorister training, but also, the primary manual talks about how well little children respond to hand movements and things that they can copy. I have also taught the children sign language for one song and part of another song, and have seen how much they love to follow me. In short, the frequency with which I have heard versions of this idea or even experienced versions myself, confirms for me that this is an activity that will be appropriate and helpful for these children.

I will start out by giving an example, for instance, "I like to look for rainbows" could be holding my hands to my eyes like binoculars, or shading my eyes to help me see better. I could also sweep my hands out to form a rainbow.

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