Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pioneer Day Singing AND Sharing Time Activity

The below activity takes a little bit of prep and interaction with the primary presidency.  You can find more of my Pioneer Day activities HERE if you are short on time.

This year, I've teamed up with a presidency counselor and we are doing a joint singing/sharing time all based around Pioneers. It should be very memorable for our primary kids and hopefully help instill in them a better appreciation and love for our pioneer ancestors in the gospel.  Here's our simple outline...

Before primary, set up the Primary Room so the chairs make one large circle and wear pioneer clothing (optional).  You can also set up a pretend fire in the middle.  Create one at home or you can purchase on on Amazon like this one:

There are several Pioneer pictures in the GAB that we will hang on the chalkboard that you can find HERE.

We'll start with a story about pioneers and temples to coincide with the 2016, July, week 3 outline found HERE.  There is information from lds.org HERE that we will be using.  We will use several pictures of the pioneer temples like these ones here:

After the story, we'll move on to life as a pioneer.  They had to make almost everything themselves  - bricks to build their homes and buckets for drawing water.  They also had to grow and make all their own food, including butter...

To make homemade butter pass out pre-filled bottles with tightly fitted lids that are each filled with the following:

  • 1 Tbsp. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 pinch salt
(I also dropped in a clean marble which helped make the butter more firm - totally optional but it helped quite a bit)

I purchased child-proof prescription bottles from Amazon as I couldn't get any donated (or even pay for any) at my local pharmacies:

Tell the kids that if they are persistent like the pioneers and shake their bottles, the liquid will turn into delicious butter that we'll get to eat at the end of primary!  Encourage shaking during the next activities...

The pioneer children walked for thousands of miles to reach Salt Lake City.  They also did lots of singing to help pass the time.  Let's see how much walking and singing we can do as we sing (I'd recommend posting the words like I do HERE and/or use the song on CD) Little Pioneer Children (and shake!)...

Pioneer (Cake) Walk: You can find details and the footsteps for this activity HERE but I am going to simplify it quite a bit.  As the kids step on the footsteps, sing and shake, I'll be watching for good singers.  Good singers get a "pioneer" treat (Salt Water Taffy!).  Once everyone has received a treat and we've sung our song a few times, we'll move on to the next activity...

Our presidency counselor will be telling a story about the boys at Sweetwater River (the kids can still be shaking their butter).  I found a little  more information HERE.  After the story, we will have a big bucket of ice water so any kids who want to can put their feet in the cold, icy water to imagine what it felt like to cross the freezing cold river...

Sing To Be a Pioneer: While we sing, the teachers and presidency members will butter crackers with the butter the kids.

To close we'll briefly discuss how we are all pioneers, even today, and how it's important not to forget our pioneer heritage and all they sacrificed for the gospel. Just like the pioneers, we make sacrifices for the gospel too.

Here's a quick list of items you'll need to bring/buy:

  • Pioneer clothing (optional)
  • Pioneer GAB pictures (optional)
  • Knives (plastic for me!)
  • Cream
  • Salt
  • Canisters/medicine bottles
  • Crackers
  • Salt Water Taffy
  • Tin
  • Ice
  • Towel


Kristina Bills said...

What was the recipe for the recipe for the homemade butter? I want to do this this week with my kids.

Camille Hill said...

Hi Kristina!

There's really no recipe, I just do a tablespoon of heavy whipping cream with a pinch of salt. Put it in the can and shake it up! I hope that helps!