Saturday, February 23, 2013

Teaching "If the Savior Stood Beside Me" with the help of my NEW Flip chart and the back story

I am excited to share with my primary children the new flip chart that I made to teach "If the Savior Stood Beside Me." My first week with this song, I will focus on teaching the message of this song but we will also begin memorizing the words together by covering a picture at a time - an old, classic method. This flip chart is 12 pages long and covers three verses.

You are welcome to download the flip chart for incidental, noncommercial home and church use. I am also happy to email the flip chart directly to you if you send me your email address.

First, the back story / Introducing the song
I usually like to play a "What Song Am I?" game to introduce a new program song but since this one is not in the Children's Hymn Book, I think a much smaller percentage of the children will know this song. Therefore, I will simply have the pianist play the song one time through and ask children to raise one hand if they at least recognize the tune, and both hands if they think they know the song. This gives them a chance to start becoming familiar with the tune.

Then, I will share the story of who wrote this song and why, which can be found on Sally DeFord's site:

A classic flip chart memorizing technique

1. I will put all the pieces of the flip chart on the board, in order. Then, I will take them through the words of the song (singing and/or talking about each line of the song), and discussing why I chose certain pictures/what they mean.

2. I will invite all of the children and teachers to sing the song with me, using the flip chart.

3. I will invite a child to come to the front of the room and choose a picture to cover. We will then sing the song again and see if we can remember the lines that we have just covered.

4. I will  choose another child to come up and cover a second picture, and then we will sing the song again, with two pictures covered. This uses repetition to help the children learn the song, but in a fun way. As we sing the song again and again, we can grow more aggressive with covering more pictures at a time. My primary children often let me know when they are ready to start covering more than one picture at a time.

The beauty of teaching this song this way is that it does not become too repetitive because the children are so engrossed in the game. (Also, I only teach a song this way once or twice a year, so it never gets repetitive.) From past experience, I will probably be able to teach Senior Primary the entire song this way in one Sunday, depending on how much time I spend talking about the lyrics. In Junior Primary, I expect to be able to teach one verse the first Sunday, and the remaining two verses the second Sunday, using this method.

I love that teaching the song this way allows me to teach not just the words, but the gospel message of this song, because I can talk about the individual pictures I used to highlight each line. For instance, I chose a picture of Joseph Smith comforting a child for the line, "So I'll be the kind of person that I know I'd like to be." I will talk about how Joseph Smith was kind and loving like our Savior, and that this picture of him can remind us to remember the type of person we want to emulate with our own actions. Another example is that  I showed how the child in one picture is sharing the gospel by giving a friend a copy of "Friend" magazine. I also like to explain "difficult" words. In this case, I will stop to make sure the children know that "nigh" means "near."

All of the images I used for the flip chart are all available at: but like I said before - you can download my flip chart, or if you have difficulty with that, just send me our email address and I will email it to you.


  1. Thanks so much! I am posting a link to this on my blog. Your flip chart is beautiful

  2. this is great. thanks so much for sharing. I don't know what I would do without the help of others so willingly to share.

  3. Thanks so much for your hard work and the share! You picked fantastic pictures to really teach the message of this song. I'm excited to use the flipchart on Sunday to teach my primary.

  4. I love your flipchart - it's beautiful. Thank you for sharing!

  5. Thank you, everyone! I can't tell you how much joy it brings me to know that I have found this way to serve others, and to hear your comments :)

  6. Having trouble downloading this, please send an attachment to the following email thanks

  7. Wonderful flipchart. Thank you so much.

  8. I appreciate, so much, your work and creativity. This is an amazing chart and I am very grateful for the ease in printing it and using it in my primary. It's the only part of the calling I find frustrating--finding the time and the ideas to make teaching aides. You are such a wonderful help and resource. Keep the ideas coming!! :)

  9. Thank you so much for your talent! It is one hour before church and my music leader just called to say we would need to teach music today. You are my Saving grace this morning!

  10. Can you still email me your flipchart : "if the Savior stood beside me". Thanks so much-

  11. Hello readers, I don't always confirm on my blog but FYI, I am still taking requests and emailing flipcharts to people.