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Friday, September 5, 2014

Primary Program Report Card

Here's the activity we'll be completing until our program on October 19th...

Primary Program Report Card...

You can access my documents HERE.  I created the 2 main pages for Jr. and Sr. primaries.  If you only have one primary, only print one of the pages.  I printed everything on white card stock and then glued the "Report Card" pages onto a manilla file folder (super easy for storing!).

The song tags are glued on to clothespins...

If you have Jr. and Sr. primaries, you'll need to print 2 sets of this page...
Just make sure when you glue on the clothespins, you glue one set on the right side of the tag and the other set on the left so they aren't upside down!

If you have different songs than I have, there are some blank ones...

The goal is simple: get all the songs pinned in the "A" section by program time.  I have five weeks of actual singing times so we'll be working on roughly 2 songs per week.

Before Primary, I'll hang the manilla folder on our pin board (some super strong magnets or an easel could probably hold it as well) and I'll have all the pins across the bottom.

I'm going to recruit a Primary Presidency member or a teacher and they will grade us as we sing each song.  I created a grading sheet to help them (found HERE).  Using it just takes some of the guess work in giving a grade.  They can sit and observe, make notes and give a final grade.  I'm thinking I'll have them give our final grade at the very end of singing time - give us a little suspense!  I printed off 5 pages so a different grader can use one each week and write notes in the space provided if they want.

Before we begin, I'll discuss the various criteria for each letter grade.  Just for fun, I may have the kids show me what an "F" sounds like!  Then, have them try to show me  their "A" quality singing.  We may have to stop places, work out kinks, learn the words better (post the words then put them away), practice standing and sitting together, use more dynamics, etc.  It's a simple approach because I've found if we have too much going on, the kids tend to focus more on the activity than their singing (okay, and I'm kind of excited to use the same lesson plan for 5 weeks!!)

The week of the program, I'll bring a treat IF (I'll be generous, ha!) all the songs are "A's!"  As for a treat, I'm sure it will be a something-or-other from Costco!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

September 2014 Singing Time Schedule

We'll be practicing for our upcoming program (scheduled for October 19th) from now until then!  My singing time activity will be the same until the program.  It will be something similar to my previous activities HERE or HERE.  More to come!!

Singing Time Schedule
September 2014

September 7th:
Reverence song:  Thanks to Our Father p. 20
Scripture song:  The Books in the Book of Mormon p. 119
Birthday song:  Your Happy Birthday p. 283
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  *Program songs

September 14th:
Reverence song:  The 13th Article of Faith p. 132
Scripture song:  The Books in the Book of Mormon p. 119
Birthday song:  Your Happy Birthday p. 283
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  *Program songs

Reverence song:
Scripture song:
Birthday song:  
Welcome song:
Singing Time:

September 28th:
Reverence song:  I Want to Live the Gospel p. 148
Scripture song:  The Books in the Book of Mormon p. 119
Birthday song:  Your Happy Birthday p. 283
Welcome song:  We Welcome you p. 256
Singing Time:  *Program songs

He Sent His Son p. 34
I Will Follow God’s Plan p. 164
I Stand All Amazed, Hymn 193
The Family is of God, 2014 outline
Keep the Commandments p. 146
Family History – I am Doing It p. 94
Baptism p. 100, Seek the Lord Early p. 108

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Lip Sync Review

A few months ago, Jennifer on LDS Primary Chorister's Facebook Page posted an activity that she came up with:

"...Printed pictures on card stock, cut out the mouths. Put them on the chalkboard backwards so the picture could not be seen. Child picks one, there was a corresponding song to go with the picture. Child got to sing the song with their lips thru the picture... Super easy prep!"

I LOVED the idea, as did 538+ choristers out there!  My only issue with it was the artwork.  Such a great idea needed great artwork!  So I mustered up the nerve to ask Erin over at OCD Primary Chorister to see if she'd illustrate the activity!  And being as FABULOUS as she is, she did it, and even added another fun activity to go along with it.

So, with that said, here's my take on the Lip Sync activity!  I will be using it to review our primary program songs...

Print the 9 documents found HERE on OCD Primary Chorister's page on card stock (I also wrote the name of the scripture hero on the bottom) and laminate (you'll probably want to laminate this one so you can wipe it off, just in case!!).  Cut out the mouths (I used an X-acto knife).

To play, place up to 9 of the characters on the floor in the front of the primary room, facing downward.  Call up the same amount of kids to come grab a picture and place it over their face.  Their goal is to make their character sing the very best that they can.

All the primary kids (including the ones seated) will sing the first verse of the first song (I'll probably work January - August in order).  After each verse, we'll try to quickly discuss how certain characters sang well:

"Look how Joseph knew the words!"
"Mary sang out so beautifully!"
"Noah was never louder than lovely!"
"Esther was so reverent!" 
And so on.

When finished, the kids will put their papers back on the floor face down.  I will switch up the order so they can't pick certain characters.  Then I'll call up 9 more kids and we'll repeat with the 2nd verse/song, talk about how well they sang, and keep rotating.  I'm hoping lots of kids will get lots of turns to lip sync with various characters.  With this week being a 5th Sunday, this could easily take up the whole time!!

I had to try them out with a few of my own kids (oh, what fun!!)...

Again, a huge thank you to Jennifer and Erin!!

Starting next week I'll begin a program-ready activity that will take us until the program to complete.  More to come!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Primary Birthday Party

Primary is celebrating its 136 birthday August 25th so I thought it would only be appropriate to wish it a happy birthday this Sunday in singing time!  We have PLENTY of time before our primary program (scheduled for October 19th) so I'm glad to take a break!!

Our primary sings We Welcome You to all the visitors and we LOVE it.  However, we only sing the first half of the song and don't know the 2nd portion.  So this Sunday we'll sing the first half using NEW "birthday" words and then learn the 2nd half by having each phrase placed in balloons that the kids will get to pop.  Along with the song phrases are 3 paragraphs that tell a little bit more about our Primary's history that will also go into the balloons.  I found the information HERE if you are interested.

Now for the party the prep!:

Decorate the chalkboard (I'll be using our push-pin board with pins instead of the chalkboard just because it will be easier to hang balloons)...
(Print my document HERE on card stock and place in a sheet protector.)

(Download and print this picture found HERE on card stock and place in a sheet protector - it's a little small but oh well)

(Print these words HERE and place in a sheet protector.)

Then You'll need at least 14 small balloons (28 if you have Jr. and Sr. like I do!) that will each need to be filled with a slip of paper (found HERE).  Number each balloon using a sharpie marker to match the number on the slip of paper inside (example: a balloon containing #1 slip of paper should have "1" written on it with a marker  - just so you know what order to pop the balloons).  TIP:  to carry them to church, place them in a large garbage bag(s), keeping Jr. and Sr. balloons separate!

Hang the filled & numbered balloons all around the 3 pictures posted above using tape or push-pins.  I also have some crepe paper that I'll decorate the very edge of the board but totally optional.

Then make a balloon popper using some sort of stick or dowel with a pin taped to the tip.  I think the kids will be more comfortable popping balloons with the stick.

For the party!:

Tell the kids that the Primary's birthday is August 25th, 1878.  Sr. Primary can figure out how old that makes it (136 years old).  Sing Happy Birthday to the Primary by using the "birthday" words for We Welcome You posted on the board.  Tell the kids that there is more to this song and it's all about the the purpose of primary.  To find out more about Primary, you will need helpers to come pop the balloons (in numerical order).

Have kids come pop a balloon, read the slip, sing or read the phrase that comes out.  Continue until all the balloons are popped, the phrases have all been sung and the paragraphs all read.

UPDATE:  There was some discussion about balloons being irreverent, distractive and maybe scaring the kids by the loud popping.  Today, after the activity (at least for our primary), none of the above mention happened.  I was able to maintain reverence and not have any crying, kids!  I did, however, make sure that when I blew up the balloons that they weren't filled to capacity.  It made them a little harder to pop but when they did pop, it was a lot softer.  Hope that helps!!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Back-To-School Review

Most of our primary heads back to school this week so I'm pulling out another annual activity...

Back-To-School Review:

I'll be using 8 props for our 8 program songs this year.  See details on the activity HERE.

Below is my updated version which includes all of this year's songs (find my simple document HERE that you can cut out and tape on to the items):

GLUE – Glue your legs together and your arms to your sides so you hold really still while we sing He Sent His Son.

SCISSORS: Sing I Will Follow God’s Plan as if you were cutting it (sing it staccato or choppy).

MARKERS – Only sing The Family is of God when you are wearing the same color as the marker that is held up.

RULER - Measure the volume as we sing I Stand All Amazed. Point to 1 inch for softer up to 12 inches for louder.

ERASER – “Erase” (don’t sing) the phrase “Keep the Commandments” in the song Keep the Commandments.

SHARPENER – Sharpen the song by enunciating each word in Family History – I am Doing It.

CALCULATOR:  Calculate how many “B” words are in Baptism.  What words are they?

PENCIL: Write with your hands by making up actions as we sing Seek the Lord Early.

VARIATION: If I had the whole time I'd throw in some extra items (tape, stapler, notebook, pen, staple remover, sticky notepad, 3-hole punch, etc.) so more kids could have a chance to find things, then attach some wiggle songs to them.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Seek the Lord Early...Continued

I'm using the same visuals I made last week found HERE and then doing the exact same activity found in the 2014 Sharing Time Outline (original source found HERE):

(too bad these pictures can't be downloaded!)

"...Display all of the pictures on the board. Invite a child to go out of the room while someone else hides one of the pictures. Have the child come back and “seek” for the picture by listening to the other children sing louder as he or she gets closer and softer as he or she gets farther away. Repeat as time allows."

Monday, July 28, 2014

Seek the Lord Early

I REALLY wanted to use the visuals suggested in the 2014 outline found HERE for August...but apparently they aren't available.  So I improvised and made some of my own that are pretty similar...

(I decided to put a keyword on each of the phrases since some of the pictures can be tricky - and why not keep the cute magnifying glass on each page?)

You can download my document HERE.  I printed mine on card stock and placed in sheet protectors.

You can also download the version with a white background HERE if you want to save on ink (definitely not as cute, however!) or the white version without the keywords HERE.

I will be using these visuals for 2 weeks, but with different activities.

For the attention getter, have the pianist play the song and ask the kids if any of them recognize it.  I'm sure at least Sr. Primary will know.  Tell them this song is all about seeking.  We will be seeking, or finding, each phrase using "telescopes!"

Pull out several empty toilet paper or paper towel tubes:
(I knew these would come in handy one day!  You can also use flashlights instead if you can get the primary room dark enough.)

Pick a child (or a few, depending on your primary size, so each child can have a turn) and have them go into the hall.  Post the first page of the visuals (I numbered each of mine on the backside) somewhere on the walls of the Primary room with tape.  Have them re-enter the room and tell them they will be seeking the first phrase by only using their telescope and closing the other eye (no peeking!).  Have the piano play the song while the kids seek out the first phrase.  Once found, place it on the chalkboard and the whole primary sings that phrase.

Repeat with new children, hanging the next phrases on the walls in different spots until all the kids have had a turn to seek, the phrases have all been found, placed in order on the chalkboard, and the song has been sung several times.

Make sure to define several of the big words: FERVENT, ABOUND

Variation: You could divide the primary into several teams.  With each phrase, 1 child from each team will go into the hall.  The first seeker to find the phrase wins that round.

You can see another lesson plan for this song HERE.