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Monday, November 14, 2011

Out "playing"

I need to apologize that it's been so long since I posted.  Last August I commited to direct an operetta type musical at our local high school.  I have been eating, sleeping and breathing nothing but the play for over three months!  We finally opened last week and we'll close this weekend.  It has been a wonderful experience but I am also looking forward to life as normal as it gets.  I hope to start posting by the end of Nov.!  We've got to get ready for Christmas!!! :-)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Pioneer Songs

Today we had a really fun day singing Pioneer songs.  I put the names of the songs on the back of Pioneer cutouts from the churches old figure sets, any Pioneer figures would do, I used the family members (dad, mom, older boy, older girl, young boy, young girl), a covered wagon (The Oxcart) and a scenic one (Westward, Ho!).  I told the children that I had brought some Pioneers with me that wanted to hear some songs about them.  For each song, I called a volunteer to come up and pick one, if it was a person, I pretended like the person "whispered" to me what song they wanted to hear and then we sang it.  To help keep the songs fun we added some fun ways to sing them.

Little Pioneer ChildrenJr. Primary - I had them gather berries, gather "chips", hear, see etc.,
Pioneer Children Sang As They WalkedIt's a given on this one, we "walked and walked and walked" through the rows of chairs.
The Handcart - Jr. Primary - I had them stand and push or pull whenever they heard the words.
The Oxcart - We sang really slow and had the teachers do a fun idea I read on The Ordinary Adventures of a Primary Chorister, they were oxen and mooed while we sang, it was so funny!  The kids loved it.  It actually sounded pretty cool!
To Be A PioneerIt's such a fun song to split and sing against each other.  It's our favorite!
Westward, Ho! - I made two signs that say "Westward, Ho" on them.  I split the singers into two groups and have two volunteers hold the signs up when it's their groups turn.  It helps the song move along.

(We sang Pioneer Children Were Quick To Obey in Sacrament Meeting, so I didn't use it in Singing Time - See flipchart.  I haven't learned Covered Wagons yet, maybe next year.)

Beautiful Mother's Day Song

I realize it's a bit late for this year, but I just figured out how to upload documents onto a companion site for my blog, so here is a really beautiful Mother's Day song that we did this year.  My Heavenly Father Loves Me has been my favorite Primary song for years (there are a few new ones getting up there now too).  So when I found this idea on Sugardoodle, I loved it.  I changed a few words, because I felt it was easier to sing and added pictures for a flipchart.  It was perfect.  Several people commented what a beautiful song it was. 

Pioneer Children Were Quick To Obey

Our Primary children are singing this in Sacrament Meeting today.  I could only find one partial flipchart besides one that you have to pay to subscribe to the site.  So I made my own and here it is.

New!!! Flipcharts!!!

I finally figured out a way to include flipcharts that I make on my blog.  I had to create a seperate google page, but at least it will let me upload them.  I'm including the link here:  As I have time, I will upload my flipcharts to this site.  If  you have any trouble accessing them, let me know.  :)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Fourth Article of Faith

Like many of you, I chose this song for June because it goes so well.  I found a really great flipchart for this song and I can't find where I got it from!  I wasn't going to do one, because they know it pretty well.  But I notice that the Sr. Primary knew it a lot better than the Jr.  So, I printed one and it has really helped!  I let five kids come up and each hold a part of the song.  The first week I wanted to sing it several times through, so I had each group go tap a new person to come up and hold pages.  Since we're split, we got through everyone in only few rounds!  Here are some other nice charts you can use that are on Sugardoodle.  If I ever find mine again, I'll add it to the post. :)

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Book of Mormon Songs

I'm really excited about an idea that I'm going to use tomorrow.  It's so simple, but I think it will be really fun!  I'm first going tell the kids that we're singing about a special book today.  Then we'll sing the "Books in the Book of Mormon" song and put up a timeline that coincides with the books.  Then I'm going to add to the time line pictures that go with the stories that are in the verses of the song "Book of Mormon Stories".  We'll go down the timeline and as we get to each picture, we'll lift it up and there will be the words to the verse that go with it. (I'm going to print each verse on a sheet of paper and attach the verses behind the pictures ahead of time and put them up with the picture when I put in on the timeline.)  I think it will be fun for the kids to see them in order.  I was going to add "Nephi's Courage" at the beginning with a picture of Nephi, then I found a verse for him that a lady named Emily Rosengren has made up, so might do that.  I guess you could do both! :)  She did several fun extra verses that you can find here on Sugardoodle. For the Sr. Primary, I think I'll add in all the "extra verses" So the order is:
  • Books in the Book of Mormon
  • Book of Mormon Stories (BOMS) verse #1
  • BOMS extra verse - Nephi
  • BOMS extra verse - Enos

  • BOMS extra verse - King Benjamin

  • BOMS verse #4 - Abinadi

  • BOMS verse #3 - Alma

  • BOMS verse #5 - Ammon

    • BOMS verse #6 - 2,000 Stripling Warriors

    • BOMS extra verse - Moroni

    • BOMS verse #7 - Samuel the Lamanite

  • BOMS verse #8 -  Christ

    • BOMS extra verse - Jared's Brother

    • BOMS verse #2
    I've realize a little problem.  The stories in the Book of Mormon are not in chronological order! For example, the story of the brother of Jared on the timeline comes BEFORE the story of Lehi and his family but for the Books in the BOM song, the book of Ether needs to be in the right place.  Another example is that in the book of Mosiah the story of King Benjamin comes before Abinadi and then the story of Alma the younger however, chronologically it goes Abinadi and then Benjamin and Alma are at the same time.   So what I've decided to do, is for Jr. Primary, only do the books in order, put the pictures in the books they go in.  For the Sr. Primary, I'm going to do the timeline first and then "compile" the stories the way that they appear in the BOM to sing the songs. :D

    D'net Layton made a Book of Mormon stories wheel that I think would be cool to print of and assemble with an arrow with a brad.  The Junior Primay would get a kick out of finding the right picture on their wheel that goes with the verse we're singing!  Here are some actions you can do with the verses. I'm not sure who made them up, but they're posted on Sugardoodle.  We may not get through all of them, but we can save extras for another day. :)

    Sunday, April 17, 2011

    On A Golden Springtime

    UPDATED! 3/7/2018

    We are singing this song with the choir for Easter Sunday.  The children sing the 1st verse, the choir the 2nd verse in parts, and the children sing the third verse while the choir does ahhhs and oohs in harmony.

    Last year I printed off a flipchart, but this year I found a fabulous idea that I'm using for the 1st verse.  It's a seed puppet and it's so cute!  Laurie McBride shares her idea on Sugardoodle explained in detail.  But where I first saw the idea was on the blog Singing Time Saver.  She has pictures on there of her puppet which I really liked, but I wanted to make a few changes.  So here's my version of the "Seed Puppet".

                                                                       Side 1 - Awake seed

    Side 2 - Asleep eyes

    When it's "sleeping" you fold your fingers over so that the sleepy eyes are over the awake ones like this:
    (hint: make sure your marker is dry before you do the other side, or do flower first so that you don't get ugly marker stains on your felt like mine did!)

    Then the seed "awakes" to side 1 by just opening your hand.

    After the seed has seen "the day is bright", on the phrase "with all your might" I turn the puppet inside out on my hand and show "the flower" side for "push upward to the light".

    It only takes a few times practicing to get the hang of it.  The Jr. Primary was crazy about it!  I was a little worried about the Sr. Primary but decided to try it because it's creator, Laurie said even her Sr. Primary liked it.  So I did, and while all I got from the older boys was some interest (that's something!), the girls were all saying, "again! again!". :)  Success!!!

    After we'd done it several times with the puppet, I went back to the flipchart because that's what I plan to use in Sacrament Meeting, but they seemed to remember it a lot better! 

    I'm so excited that I ran into a FB Primary Music Leader friend Rachelle Taylor Jensen that shared with me her ideas for verses two and three of this song! I did my verse two puppets very similar to hers, adding a tombstone but ended up doing different ones for verse three. (I absolutely loved her cute verse three flags but I needed something more consolidated.)

    So here are the puppets for verse two:

    "On a golden springtime, Jesus Christ awoke and left the tomb where he had lain; the bands of death he broke".

    "Awake, awake, O sleeping world! Look upward to the light. For now all men may live again.

    "Look upward to the light". (Her sun was all felt and very cute, I didn't have any yellow felt so I improvised. Lol!)
    Note: The sun puppet is also used in the other two verses for "to the light" and "glorious light".

    Verse three:

    "On a golden springtime, in a forest glade"

    "The Father and the Son appeared as Joseph knelt and prayed"

    "Awake, awake, O nations all! Receive the gospel light! The gospel true is here for you"

    ("Receive it's glorious light!' - see sun)

    Thursday, March 31, 2011

    He Died That We Might Live Again

    For our program song for April we will be learning "He Died That We Might Live Again".  Once again, I found some great ideas on Sugardoodle.  A lady named Bonnie shared the idea she read of a perfect introduction to the song.  She refers to this story, "Plane Crashes Into The Potomac"  and of the bravery shown by a couple of men to save other's lives.

    I'm going to use the "Who, What, Where, When, Why, How" idea with wordstrips from Becky (same Sugardoodle link) for the Senior primary.  But for the Junior I think I'll do an Easter song introduction idea that I found on Teaching LDS Children.

    Update 4/10/11 - I didn't end up having time yet to make the Easter song introduction box, hopefully I can for next week. The word strips worked so well though!  I've only done the first half of the song because we're also working on another song for Easter.  We'll finish it next week. To do the matching game, I printed the question words (who, what, where etc.,) on colored paper.  Then I printed the phrases on white sheets. I ended up doing a phrase on each sheet that I printed.  Before we began, I magneted the question words on the board.  For the Jr. Primary, I did them in order.  As we sang each phrase, we discussed which question it answered.  For the Sr. Primary, I mixed up the questions words all over the board.  Then as we sang each phrase, they had to figure out which question it answered and put it in order. As we learned it this week, I divided the phrases one way, but I'm going to change them for next week to this:

    WHY: "He died that we might live again"
    WHO: "Lord Jesus, our Redeemer true"
    WHERE: "He died on Cal-v'ry's lonely hill"
    HOW: "His life he gave for me and you"
    WHEN: "He rose from the grave on Easter Morn"
    WHO #2: "Our Savior and our King"
    WHAT: "He showed his love for all man-kind"
    WE CAN: "For his great love, give thanks and sing
                     "Re-joice! Re-joice! and sing, sing, sing."

    For Junior Primary, after we learned each phrase, I picked a child to look for a plastic Easter Egg (I had hidden several around the room before we began) and we repeated and repeated until they found an egg -then we had to stop and go on to the next one.  They LOVED it!!!

    Update 4/17/11 -  I forgot to take my list with me to church today.  (I hate it when I do that!) So when I got there I ended up rearranging all the question words because I couldn't remember what I had put down.  It still worked though.  Here is a picture of how it ended up at the end of today.

    We continued our Easter egg hunt this week.  I went ahead and did an Easter egg hunt with the Sr. Primary too because they begged last week once they found out that the Jr. Primary had done one.  It's amazing how much more the children pay attention and sing well when they want to be picked for doing a good job. ;)  By the end of both singing times, they knew the song really well, and I had their attention most of the time! Yay!

    Scripture Power!

    I've been trying to find something I really love for the song "Scripture Power" and today I ran across this fabulous idea from Teaching LDS Children.  It's only for the second verse, so I still need to come up with stuff for the 1st, but it inspired me!

    (Visit their site to get the pattern!)

    Easter Ideas!

    I really love this simple "Ways to Sing in an Egg Carton" that I found on Precious Primary.  As I find or come up with other Easter ideas I like, I'll add them to this post.

    Here is a great Easter song introduction idea and really fun Easter egg song review at Teaching LDS Children.

    Songs for General Conference

    Every Sunday before General Conference I have to sing prophet songs.  Two of them that are my favorites and absolute musts are:

    Latter-Day Prophets - I read this idea somewhere to do small and decided it would be fun to do big too!  I have taken 16 sheet protectors and taped them together side by side, then I inserted an 8x11 picture of each prophet in order from Joseph Smith to Thomas S. Monson.  I also printed little strips of paper with their names on them so you can read them better and slid them inside the sleeves to the bottom in front of the pictures.  Then you fold it up accordian style.  You could use it as a sort of flipchart but what our Primary likes to do is hold it out long with helpers (it takes about 8!) while we sing it.

    Modern Day Apostles (As I Have Love You) -  I also read this one somewhere years ago.  We sing the last names of the First Presidecy and the Quorum of the Twelve to the tune of "As I Have Loved You".  I put all their pictures up in order with a strip of paper taped to the front with just their last name large so it's easy to read.  It's a fun way to review who they'll be listening to the next weekend so that they're more familiar with their faces.  So it goes like this:

    "Monsen and Eyring, Uchdorf, Packer Perry, Nelsen, Oaks, Ballard, Scott and Hales, Holland and Bednar, Cook, Christofferson, Anderson, these are the modern-day apostles."

    We often also sing "Follow the Prophet" and this year I added the 2nd verse of "If I Listen With My Heart" since we'd learned it.  It was perfect!

    Songs for Spring!


    Here is my list of favorites for Spring (which is also where I got the name for my blog, hee hee):

    • Give Said The Little Stream:  We do kind of a fun variation on this song.  I got the idea from Peggy North on Sugardoodle.  "For every word that begins with a G, clap hands once (i.e. Give, Go, Grows, Greener, etc.) For every word that begins with an S, stand up and sit back down (i.e. Stream, Small, Still, Singing) Obviously, everyone sings this sitting down, so that they can stand and sit at the appropriate times--you'll need your own chair at the front.  The children LOVE this.  Start out slow when they're first learning, but as they get to know it better, the second time through they just love going FAST, and you get a workout on the chorus, especially!  I have done this every time I was a chorister, and it's always a hit.  I've since added snaps for words that begin with R (rain, raise). " We do head nods on the R words.  The kids really like it and it's a nice way to get some extra energy out!

    • In The Leafy Tree Tops:  I brought a bird on a popsicle stick for a child to hold during the first verse and a flower for the second.  Of course we also all stand and do actions for the song as well.

    • Little Purple Pansies:  I have a beautiful picture of a field of pansies (many purple ones) that I got out of an old calendar.  You could probably google one.

    • Popcorn Popping: I also have a calendar page of an orchard of apricot trees in full bloom, so that the children can see why it looks like popcorn on the trees. (We of course do all the actions too.)

    • Wind Is Blowing All Around (Rain Is Falling All Around):  Especially for the month of March!  I tell them about the days being "Lambs" or "Lions" and on the "Lion" days, how the wind roars!!!  I plan on next year having a lamb and lion prop or puppet to help me out. :)
    Check out this fun Spring Singing Aide at Precious Primary!  It's really cute!

    Stand For the Right

    I was scrambling around looking for a flipchart for this song and found this simple fun idea by Cara Webber on Sugerdoodle:

    Our prophet has some words for you (boy stands holding picture of prophet)

    And these are the words:

    “Be true, be true.”
    (only boy holding picture says “be true, be true”)

    At work or at play,
    (child holds up broom in one hand and baseball bat in other hand)

    In darkness or light,
    (child holds up flashlight and turns it on when everyone sings “light”)

    Be true, be true,
    (boy holding prophet’s picture says “be true, be true”)

    And stand for the right.
    (everyone stands when singing “stand for the right”)

    What I changed:

    For "Be true, be true" I actually made a sign for Sr. Primary to hold with the words on it.  For Jr. Primary I laminated a large bee cutout.

    For "work" and "play" I used a duster and a baseball (they fit better in my bag than a broom and bat).

    It was nice because I could put everything in a small bag and I took the bag with me for a couple of weeks.  They learned it really fast, and had it memorized by the end of March. :)

    Sunday, February 20, 2011

    Love Is Spoken Here

    I really like this flipchart by D'net Layton and I was trying to figure out how I could do both verses at the same time when you sing the two together.  I came up with this idea.  I made a reversible double flipchart for each part and then did the ending seperate.  That way three children can help and do the whole verse.  So here's what they look like:

    I taped together two sheet protectors and then put the first two sheets on one side, flipped it and put the next two sheets on the back.  The child holding it, just flips it when we get to the bottom.

    chart 1 - side A
     chart 1 - side B
     chart 2 - side A
     chart 2 - side B
     chart 3

    I Will Follow God's Plan

    This is my favorite flipchart for this song, by Bridgette Patterson.   It uses some great pictures like this one from the Friend.

    For Review:

    I really liked this idea from Sofia's Primary Ideas . "To review this song, have the different sections of the Plan of Salvation cut out. " (She used this one from a Sharing Time on the  Plan of Salvation in the Friend by Margaret Lifferth.)


    "Invite a child to come to the front and arrange in the right order- and see if they can do so before the end of the song. For older children, make this more complicated by having them arrange on a table only using their chin or elbow."

      My problem was that I felt these pictures were too small and I didn't have the time or means to blow them up.  So instead I chose Gospel Art Pictures and other Primary pictures that matched the small pictures like these ones below:

    The WorldAdam and EveMary and the Resurrected Lord

     I slid each picture in a sheet protector and stuck a strip of magnet to the back of the sheet protector.  That way I could stick them to the chalkboard and they could re-arrange them easily to put them in order.  I still put the small pictures up in order on the top, kind of as a "cheat sheet".  I think it helped them not get confused or discouraged. I also chose two children at a time so they could kind of do it as a team and that worked well.

    Valentine Ideas

    I read some really cute Valentine ideas, but none of them fit what I was wanting to do.  So I just made a variation of the old "Choose A Song" idea.  First I made a list of songs that talked about love, then I chose five to choose from for the first week (we didn't get to all of them) and rotated in different songs each week as we sang them.  I just put the names of the songs on stickers on the back of some heart die cuts from the $ store and put them in a cute little Valentine bag I have for them to choose from.  By only having five at a time, I only had to bring half the visual aids each week.

     Here are the songs I used:
    • I'll Walk With You
    • I'm Trying To Be Like Jesus
    • Jesus Said Love Everyone
    • Love Is Spoken Here
    • Love One Another
    • We Are Different (3rd verse)
    • I Love To See The Temple
    • We Are A Happy Family
    • Love At Home
    • If I Listen With My Heart
    I also moved my "helper popsicle sticks" from the soup can they are normally in, to a Valentine pail.  (The tape on the ends of the popsicle sticks helps me see right off who has been chosen and who hasn't and I can still leave them all together.)

    One week, I had the Primary kids figure out how to make a heart with their hands and everytime we sang the word "LOVE" they made a heart.  :)  It was fun and kept the younger kids attention as they were listening for the right word.

    Sunday, February 6, 2011

    New Testament Books Primary Wave

    Today the kids were really restless after Sharing Time, so I tried an idea I found by Tami Reid on Sugar Doodle called Primary Wave that you do with the song "The Books in the New Testament" (adaptable to Old Testament too).

    by Tami Reid / ga02182008

    "I have a fun activity that we do with The Books in the New Testament.  This idea is based on the concept of the stadium "wave" that you see done at college or professional sports games where part of the audience stands up with their arms up in the air, then the next section of the stadium stands up and so forth until the whole audience has a "wave" moving through it.  We sing "The Books in the New Testament" with each class forming part of the wave and then going around and around the room with each "book" from the New Testament.  It works especially well with Senior Primary children.  It takes a little more work initially with  the Junior primary children.  However, they really enjoy this song/activity now that they know the words.  When we get to each class' verse, they stand up with their arms in the air and sing the name of their "book(s)."  Depending on how your room is situated, it may be easier for the music leader to stand in the middle of the room while leading this song/activity...

    **Here's an example of how it goes...

    Matthew --Sunbeams (Sunbeams stand up & sing "Matthew" with their arms raised high in the air.)
    Mark -- CTR 5 (CTR 5s stand up & sing "Mark" with their arms raised while Sunbeams sit down.)
    Luke -- CTR 6 (CTR 6s stand up & sing "Luke" with their arms raised while CTR 5s sit down.)
    and John -- CTR 7 (Same pattern as above...)
    The Acts -- CTR 8
    and The Romans -- Valiant 9
    1st & 2nd Corinthians -- Valiant 10
    Galatians -- Valiant 11/12
    Ephesians -- Sunbeams
    Philippians -- CTR 5
    Colossians -- CTR 6
    1st & 2nd Thessalonians -- CTR 7
    Timothy -- CTR 8
    Timothy -- Valiant 9
    Titus -- Valiant 10
    and Philemon -- Valiant 11/12
    then to the Hebrews -- Sunbeams
    Epistle of James -- CTR 5
    Peter -- CTR 6
    Peter -- CTR 7
    John -- CTR 8
    John -- Valiant 9
    John -- Valiant 10
    Jude -- Valiant 11/12
    Revelation -- Sunbeams
    These are the Books of the New Testament -- All sing together

    **My own children love to do this song in Family Home Evening with each person forming part of the "wave."

    **Initially, to help the children learn the names of the books, I made posters with word strips and pictures signifying the name of the book (for the non-readers).  We were fortunate to have a Primary/ward with many Matthews, Johns, Phillips, Peters, Timothy's and even a "Corinne" (for Corinthians).   I had to get rather creative with some of the books obviously--some ideas might include a picture of a check mark for Mark; an oarsman in a boat for "Row-mans;" a glacier for Galatians, etc. "

    It was a spur of the moment decision, so I didn't have it written on the board, or any word strips prepared or anything.  So I "winged it'.  We also have a small Primay and some of our classes are combined so I had to adapt that too.  I assigned the classes "their books" and we started out slow and progressively sung it faster until it was up to speed.  It took a little while for them to catch on, but they got it and seemed to have a lot of fun with it.  :)  Eventually I'd like to be able to sing it really fast with them.  I also had a thought that if you had them keep their arms down and went the normal pace so that it was reverent, it might actually be a fun song to put in the program. : D

    UPDATE (6/19/11):  After trying several different ways, this is what I've come up with for this song.  We're going to use it in the program and I want to do the sporatic singing but a little more reverently.  So I've divided the song into five groups (some of our classes are combined because we're a bit small).  Each group has a color.

    Sunbeam/CTR 5 = Group #1 (Yellow)
    CTR 6/CTR 7 = Group #2 (Orange)
    CTR 8 = Group #3 (Purple)
    Valiant Girls = Group #4 (Pink)
    Valiant Boys = Group #5 (Green)

    I made a large poster with all the words and underlined each section with the groups color so that they know when to sing.  Each group stands up on their part to sing it and then sits down (except where noted). This is how I have it divided:

    Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, (Yellow)
    the Acts and Romans, (Orange)
    First and Second Corinthians, (Purple)
    Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, (Pink)
    First and Second Thessalonians,  (Green)
    Timothy, Timothy, (Yellow)
    Titus, Philemon(Orange) Then to the Hebrews, (Purple)
    Epistle of James, (Pink) - stay standing
    Peter, Peter, John, John, John, (Green) - stay standing
    Jude, Revelation— Jr. Primary - stay standing
    These are the books of the New Testament. -  Everyone.

    They loved it!  Especially since they figured out it was the same tune as their favorite program song this year, "Praise To The Man".  The keep begging to sing it again! :D  "I love it when a plan comes together!"

    Sunday, January 16, 2011

    The Iron Rod Flip Chart

    I've made several flip charts for different songs, but I don't know how to put them on here yet.  I did however, submit my first flip chart to Sugardoodle of the song "The Iron Rod".  So you can follow the previous link to get to it. :)

    Snowball Fight with Favorite Songs

    An anonymous visitor left this idea on Sugardoodle.

    "A fun idea is to have each child write their favorite song on a piece of paper. Then, they wad the paper up like a snowball. Sing a song, and the class that sings best gets to throw their "snowballs" at the song leader. Continue until all the classes have had a chance. At the end, pick up all the snowballs. For the next weeks singing time, have them guess the "top ten" favorite songs from the week before. WAY FUN!"
    I'm going to try it in a couple of weeks.  I'm a little worried about it getting out of hand, so I'm going to have a large bowl as a back up, if they get too rowdy throwing the "snowballs" I will gather them in a bowl to choose from. :)