Thursday, January 30, 2014

Introducing "I Will Follow God's Plan"

This song is great because it has such visual words. This will be Fast Sunday, so of course, singing time and sharing time tends to be shorter, but I think in Junior Primary you could almost stick to just the intro and begin the object game, to be finished on a second Sunday. My senior primary knows this song well so for them, this is just a review, but I think this type of activity is fun even if you already know the words of the song.

The great thing about this activity is that it teaches the song in an attention-getting way, but only takes about 10 minutes to prepare the lesson. The rest is up to you to make sure you have learned the song :)

I. First, introduce the song
Pick a fun, new way for children to select papers that let them read clues about the song. I haven't done my Singing Notes in over a year, so I'd bring that back (in short, find a fun visual, hide clues under the papers, and let the kids throw bean bags or something, or even put blind folds on them, to let them pick a note, or whatever other object you made).  Or, since Chinese New Year is this weekend, it would be nice to put the clues in the traditional red envelopes. 

Clues for "I Will Follow God's Plan":

1. The words and music for this song were written by Vanja Y. Watkins.
2. This song is about Mosiah 2:41.
3. This song is on page 164 of the Children's Songbook.
4. This song was written in 1981.
5. The writer of this song also has six other songs in the Children's Songbook, though this is probably her most well-known. She also wrote "Easter Hosanna," "Thank Thee for Everything," and "For Thy Bounteous Blessings."
6. Play two notes of the song. (Add two notes if two notes have already been played.)
7. Play two notes of the song.  (Add two notes if two notes have already been played.)

II. Introduce the words and meaning

Option #1
I did this activity two years ago in January 2012;  basically, have a "right" and a "wrong" option for key visuals in the song that will help the children to remember the song. Then, call a reverent child to the front of the room, tell the child the line of the song, but without the "missing" word, and have them guess the correct object use. I had all the objects set up on the table, but would hold up the two that were relevant to that line of the song (which I had jotted down on notes in front of me so I wasn't scrambling to find the correct object to use).

For instance, the first line of the song is, "My life is a gift." Therefore, you could have two objects - a wrapped present and a banana, and say, do you think it is, "My life is a gift" or "My life is a banana?" 

My life is a  - or - My life is a ??

As the children correctly sort through the objects, have them sing lines of the song, and hold up the objects for them to remind them of the words that they will sing. This helps them to do the repetition that is so crucial to memorizing and learning, but without them feeling like they are singing the same words over and over. In addition, it gives you a chance to talk about each line of the song, and why the appropriate word was used.

I made recommendations of what objects to use below. Make sure your "wrong" object is clearly the wrong choice. 

Line of song
Correct object
Wrong object
My life is a GIFT; 
Wrapped present
Banana or other piece of fruit
my life has a PLAN.
Draw a little map that replicates what the presidency has been teaching during sharing time, showing a person on the left, the pre-mortal world, earth, and returning to our Father in Heaven.
Bike pump
My life has a purpose, in HEAV'N it began.
Arrow pointing up (draw this on a piece of paper with grass below and sky above so it’s clear that you are pointing up, not down).
A necklace
CTR ring or giant shield
was to come to this lovely HOME 
Small house statue or picture of a house
Shampoo bottle
a keychain
And seek for God's LIGHT to direct me from birth. I will follow God's plan for me,
Etc … other suggestions … scissors, a pen, an ipod, a box of tissues … small things that are neutral and might cause a couple of giggles but are also not disrespectful!

Option #2
Another fun way to do this is to write all the words out on a poster board, put the pictures on the chalkboard, and let children pick which image is correct to fill in the blank. This way is harder because there are some pics that could potentially go in some of the spots but would not be the correct picture for that spot. 

Use velcro stickers so the children can add the picture to the correct spot on the poster board as they identify the correct pictures.


  1. Where was this blog on Saturday? I thought I exhausted the whole internet and found no inspiration for teaching this song. We survived on Sunday, but I would have looked a lot more brilliant had I seen this. Keep the ideas coming!

    1. Oh too bad - I am glad you found me though!

    2. I love this Idea, but I'm a little but confused. Do You stop singing after each phrase to pick which object is the right choice or do you sing it all the way through? How does the repetition happen? THank you!

    3. I'm sorry I didn't see this sooner. You learn one line at a time, but at your discretion, after they pick another object, you can have them sing all the lines they have learned up to that line, or just that line. I mix it up a little. So, it could go like this: 1) Learn line one. Sing line one. 2) Learn line two. Sing lines one and two together. 3) Learn line three. Sing lines one-three together. 4) Learn line four. Now sing just lines three and four together. 5) Learn line five. Sing just lines four and five together, or lines three-five together, depending on the energy of the children and how well they are learning the song ... and how much time you have left. When you get to the end, have them sing the whole song through at least once.

  2. I made my own "right" and "wrong" pictures for the entire song if anyone is in a bind and needs to print something fast. It's only 2 megabytes in PDF file. My email is : if you'd like a copy. Blessings to all.