Monday, January 9, 2017

Susan Fitch Flip Chart Buddy

I noticed on Susan Fitch Design's blog that she is asking choristers for suggestions to go in her "Flip Chart Buddy" kit she is currently designing.  I typically don't teach songs straight from flip charts in singing time, but there are several times where I need a picture for something and cannot find it from scouring the internet.  Whether you teach from flip charts or not, this kit could really come in handy!

Anyway, if you've ever found yourself searching for images to help you teach your singing time lesson and come up with nothing, here's your chance for help!  Just comment over on Susan's post HERE with suggestions that you'd like to see in her kit!  She'll be doing a giveaway when it's completed and you'll also be able to buy it in her Etsy shop.

I absolutely love Susan's work and really appreciate the time and effort she puts forth to help us music leaders do our calling!  So do yourself a favor and help her help you!

Friday, January 6, 2017

2017 Sing-Along Videos (aka Program Showcase)

Each January, I like to present all the upcoming program songs using video Sing-Along Flip Charts. LeAnn posted several of her files on the Chorister's FB (a HUGE thank you for saving us all SO much work!!).  You can find all of hers HERE.  I have 3 months that vary from hers.  The complete 8 videos that I will be using are HERE (March: Dare To Do Right, April: When He Comes Again and July: Every Star is Different).  If you have songs you will be teaching and you need a video, I created a tutorial on how I created these HERE.

I loaded each video onto my iPod via iTunes.  I have a cable (it's a 32-pin apple port to RCA - I have the older, wide port iPod connector) that I'll run from my iPod to the library's TV to view each of these videos.  Hopefully you understand all this talk - I don't - it's what my husband told me to type :).  I'm pretty sure you can burn these onto a DVD as well but I've never done it.

Now, not techy? No problem {honestly, neither am I - so thanks hubby!!}  You can download and print flip charts for each of these songs from and simply bring the songs on CD (if you made a 2017 Primary Program Songs CD, your life will be that much easier! Find details on my CD HERE).  I'd suggest placing each flip chart in plastic sheet protectors and putting them in a binder for easy flipping.  It may be a lot of flip charts but if you plan on using them later in the year, you'll be saving yourself work later on, right?  You could also ask various ward members to come in and do a musical performance of the songs!                                                                  

To break up each song, I created this simple worksheet for the kids to fill out after we watch each video:

If your 2 song choices are different than mine, here's a more blank version:

Then here's an even more blank version if you need:

Download these documents HERE (print the page(s) you need).  Sorry, I don't have one that you can edit on the computer.  You can do some literal "cutting and pasting" with the information you needed added.  Tape it all on and you'll never know it once you make copies!

I know that the little Jr. kiddos won't understand most of the worksheet but at least they will have something to color while we watch our videos ;).

So, pass out a coloring utensil to all the kids, along with a worksheet and push "play."  I'm going to encourage the kids to sing along as much as they can and if there are songs they don't know, they can go home and listen to their CD's that were given at Christmas.  If you really want to go the extra mile, bring a movie treat!

It should be a fun and simple way to introduce all the program songs for 2017 (as long as we don't have any technical difficulties)!

During this time, the presidency, pianist and I will be shuffling kids in and out of the room to get class pictures up for our bulletin board for 2017 as well.

I've also uploaded the videos I will be using to YouTube here:

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Sing-Along Video Tutorial

Each year I present sing-along videos (aka Primary Program Showcase) in January to introduce all the songs we will be learning that upcoming year for the program.  I thought I would share how I create them in case some of your songs are different than mine and you would like to create your own.

I work on a Mac computer so my instructions may be different if you are on a PC.  If you are using a PC, I'm sorry, I may not be of much help.  Also, before you begin, you will want to have the music you are going to use added to your iTunes music library (this is necessary in creating your videos).
  • Download (or create) a flip chart for your chosen song.  I've mostly downloaded from  They download into a PDF format.  Save onto your computer.
  • Open the PDF on your computer and go to "view" and click "thumbnails."  Right click on each thumbnail page of your flip chart pages and "export as" a JPEG format, adding pg 1, pg 2, pg 3, etc. after each page you save.  You are creating individual JPEG files.  I like to double check in the my finder window that I did save each page as a JPEG and that the pages are all correct (it will save you a headache later on - trust me!)
  • Open iMovie on your Mac computer.  If you've never used iMovie (I'm not really familiar with it), I suggest watching this tutorial HERE on how to make a slide show in iMovie:

  • Create a new document and title it the name of your song.  Choose "no theme" which will give you a basic layout.  I didn't want anything fancy with these.
  • Drag and drop your JPEG files or import into iMovie (if you are on a PC, I've heard of Moviemaker as an option).
  • Crop (near the upper right) the documents to "fit" so they fit full screen when played.
  • Go to the "Audio" tab and choose your music from your iTunes file.  Drag the file from the list to the box below.  Align the beginning of the song with the first file.
  • Transition the pages so they correspond with the JPEG files.  You want the words on the page to match what is being sung.  I left the space in between the transitions as default as I thought it was fine.  End the music with your last file.
  • Review your file and make any necessary corrections then "share" the file by going to the upward arrow in the upper righthand corner.  You can select the option that fits you needs.  I exported to iTunes since I was loading them on my iPod.  If you will be showing them from your computer, selecting "file" will be the best option for you.  Name the file and save.
Let me know if you have questions!!  If you've created these a different way, please share as I'm sure there is more than one way to create them.

You can find all of my sing-along video posts (aka Primary Program Showcases) HERE.

Here We Are Together - Introductions!

I'm a week behind the times with last Sunday still being Christmas break so this week I'm working on introductions even though last week was the first week of the new year.

If you have already done introductions, I'd suggest forging on ahead with what I have planned throughout the month of January HERE.  I've updated this post to include the few 2017 Primary Showcase items that I've put together for those of you who are ahead of me so hopefully that helps some.  I'll keep updating as I get more material together (or find work from others which I have to say THANK YOU for contributing!).

My introductions singing time lesson plan that I'll be doing this Sunday is found HERE.

It's going to be another great year in primary!!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Christmas Singo, Primary Fireworks and More!

I'm still in holiday mode this weekend and am in no way ready to kick-off the new year - anyone else with me?!  So I'm bringing in Christmas Singo and taking over sharing time as well!  Find my Christmas Singo lesson plan HERE.

If you have already done Christmas Singo, I'd suggest Primary Fireworks for this Sunday.  Find my lesson plan HERE.  You can choose your primary's top 10 favorite primary songs or your top 10 favorite primary songs, or songs from years past, whatever!  It will be a BLAST {pun intended!}.  Fellow chorister Pam shared her New Year's version on FB HERE.  Super cute!

You can also check out my January Singing Time Schedule HERE.  I've got TONS planned from introductions, to Primary Program Showcase, to teaching As a Child of God.  More to come!!

2017 Scripture Prompts

Our primary has the current month's scripture taped to the podium so the child who was assigned to read the scripture has it right there in front of them.  No more turning and reading it on the wall behind them so the rest of the primary can't hear!!

To make them easy to transition each month, the prompts fit on a half sheet of paper and are all inserted into a half-size sheet protector.  Amazon sells them here:

The box of 50 is linked here even though Amazon does sell a box of 25...but only as an add-on (which means it will ship to you when you have other items to ship with it - it won't ship alone).  If you have other Amazon items you are purchasing, I'd get the smaller box :).

The sheet protector is taped to the podium on 3 sides with the pocket left open.  The whole year's worth of scriptures are stored right behind the current month's (it's a bit tight at first but it works - if it's too tight, only store 6 month's worth) so when a month is over, you simply pull out the top month to reveal the following months' prompt.  It has worked well in our primary!

You can download all of the prompts for 2017 HERE.

And along a similar topic...assigning the scriptures, talks, prayers, etc., a few years ago I created Assignment Cards to help in opening exercises.  You can find details for them HERE.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

January 2017 Singing Time Schedule

See how I use my singing time schedule HERE!  Then download an editable and printable version of the below information HERE.

Make sure you check out my Pat Graham Workshop details HERE.

For our Scripture Song this year (see how I sing these in singing time HERE), we will be focusing on the 13 Articles of Faith.  See how we'll incorporate those HERE.  We turned in our Scripture Power Jar (found HERE) to the Bishopric last week full of pennies the kids earned to donate to the Ward Missionary Fund - it was a great success!!

Singing Time Schedule
January 2017

January 1st:
Opening song:  He Sent His Son p. 34
Scripture song:  The First & Second Article of Faith p. 122
Birthday song:  You've Had a Birthday p. 285
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  Picture a Christmas p. 50, Away in a Manger p. 42, When Joseph went to Bethlehem p. 38, Oh, Hush Thee My Baby p. 48, Christmas Bells p. 54, Once Within a Lowly Stable p. 41, The Nativity Song p. 52, Sleep Little Jesus p. 47, Stars Were Gleaming p. 37, Who Is The Child p. 48
Activity: Christmas Singo HERE

**If you've already done Christmas Singo or are way over Christmas, I'd suggest Primary Fireworks HERE for New Years Day!

January 8th:
Opening song:  I Will Follow God’s Plan p. 164
Scripture song:  The First & Second Article of Faith p. 122
Birthday song:  You've Had a Birthday p. 285
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  Hello Song p. 260
Activity: Introductions using the lesson plan found HERE.  We'll introduce all the Sunbeams, all the new Sr. primary kids and all the kids to all their teachers!  Then incorporate the Wiggle Worm jar found HERE as needed.

January 15th:
Opening song:  Teach Me to Walk in the Light p. 177
Scripture song:  The First & Second Article of Faith p. 122
Birthday song:  You've Had a Birthday p. 285
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  As a Child of God 2017 outline, Choose the Right, hymn #239, Dare to Do Right p. 158, When He Comes Again p. 82, When I Am Baptized p. 103, Nephi's Courage p. 120, Every Star is Different p. 142, I'm Trying to Be like Jesus p.78
Activity: 2017 Sing-Along Videos (aka Program Showcase) - check out my 2017 post HERE!

January 22nd:
Opening song:  I Know My Father Lives p. 5
Scripture song:  The First & Second Article of Faith p. 122
Birthday song:  You've Had a Birthday p. 285
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  As a Child of God, 2017 outline – chorus, 1st verse
Activity: Teach using ASL - lesson plan HERE and maybe adding scarves

January 29th:
Opening song:  I Will Be Valiant p. 162
Scripture song:  The First & Second Article of Faith p. 122
Birthday song:  You've Had a Birthday p. 285
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  As a Child of God, 2017 outline – 2nd & 3rd verse
Activity: Teach using ASL - lesson plan HERE and maybe adding scarves