Saturday, September 8, 2012

Facebook Group for Choristers

I thought it might be fun to create a central area for all of us choristers to meet up, share, ask, and chat.  So, I have created a "closed" group on Facebook for all of us that are currently serving as LDS Primary Choristers.  Please, please join our group.  The more of us there are, the more successful the group will be.  Since it is a closed group (posts cannot be seen by those that aren't members) you will need to visit the group and request membership.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Wise man and the Foolish man

Awhile ago I decided to use a different rendition of the Wise man and the Foolish man (found HERE).  I fell in love with this arrangement because it puts an entirely different tone to this "wiggle" song.  When I first saw the program line-up I was pretty confident I would just replace the Wise man/Foolish man song with something else, but this changed everything.  Give it a listen.  It is wonderful.

I also am using a wonderful visual/object lesson to review this song tomorrow in primary.  Kids love object lessons and I thought this was a great one (see the blog post in its entirety by clicking here, courtesy Nalani at

The items you will need are:

  • 2 clear dishes (glass cake dishes are suggested)
  • Flat top rock placed in one of the dishes
  • Sand
  • 2 houses to fit on rock/sand mound
  • Watering can or container filled with water
  • Towel or fabric for cleaning up messes
  • Towel or fabric to keep your display hidden until it is time to present
(images courtesy Nalani)


You can probably envision what happens once you pour the water in to each dish.  Nalani has some great questions to pose as you go along to make the kids think.  I am also going to challenge the senior primary to scripture chase some scriptures that would pertain to this song.  (We have a gumball machine we are filling up and they will get extra gumballs if they can find the scriptures without any assistance).

I have fallen in love with this song and the arrangement found on Terri Hutchings Music blog.  What a great way to make the kids excited about a song they already know the words to so well.

How's your program coming?? Is it getting close for you too? D-day is September 16th for us!! I think I might record some of our dress rehearsals so we can play it back for the kiddos.  Who doesn't like seeing themselves on camera?!? :D  Good luck! Review, review, review and have fun!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Musical Missionaries

I have really wanted to find a way to teach the kids how to apply the songs they learn at church, in their daily life.  Personally, when I was younger, I relied on all my primary songs to help me remember the basic concepts of what our church believes.  I grew up in the "mission field" and did not have very many LDS friends.  I was often asked very basic questions about my Sunday activities and was very grateful to have primary songs memorized to help in situations like these.

I created a little activity I am going to call "Musical Missionaries". Here are the supplies I am using:

  • large, printed missionary tag (one per class)
  • graphical representation of appropriate songs for board
  • missionary questions
  • my curious kids picture (to act as a visual for the friend asking questions)
  • a set of 9 questions that are asked (and match up with the songs represented on the board)
You can work this activity however it best fits your primary (I have a very small primary) but I plan on randomly selecting one "missionary" per class, who will act as the spokesman (be sure to pick someone you know is not particularly shy). I then plan on having my 9 questions in separate envelopes numbered 1-9 (in my pre-set order).  You could either hide the questions around the room for a child to find or simply have them up front for you to read. Each class will answer one question (I plan on starting in the front and going through each class).  Once I ask the question, the class with talk with each other (and teacher's really need to step in and help!!) and tell the missionary which picture/song on the board they "think" will answer the question.  If they pick the wrong song, depending on time, you could sing the incorrect song and ask them if they think that song worked. If not, why? Place back on board and try again.

With the correct song selected and sang, I will ask the missionary (and class) to tell me one thing they heard in the song that could answer our friends question.  So on and so forth.

If you have any suggestions on how this activity could be improved or any variations you may have done, I'd love to hear them!

I do have some rough graphics available for you to download below.  I plan on re-doing them when I have more time and mounting on colored paper, then laminating.  Of course you could amend my documents to reflect any songs/questions you want.

Monday, July 16, 2012

July: Pioneer Month - Diving for Crickets

I am using July as an opportunity to revive the fun pioneer songs from the Children's Songbook.  There is a story in this month's friend called 'Saving the Wheat'.  I took this story and created a different version of "fishing" that allowed us to pick a variety of songs.

I printed out little crickets and a seagull picture.  I then placed the cricket cut-outs in a bin of rice (you could also use wheat berries if you have them and are willing to use them).  I then attached paper clips to each cricket.  For the pole I used a piece of wood (skewer) and yarn to make a pole for the seagulls.  I attached my seagull picture to the yarn that had a magnet attached to the bottom.  (Hopefully that all made sense).  I began by telling the kids the story from the friend and then we went diving for crickets! Each cricket had a song written on the back. I enjoyed the simple way of bringing a real adaption to the game and I think the kids will remember the bugs! They had lots of fun!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Latter-Day Prophets: Hot/Cold Matching Game

We are still learning the Latter-Day Prophets song and I decided to take the first six prophets and use them in a  matching game.

I pinned my accordion of pictures along the long wall in the primary room (accordion of picture instructions HERE) and I covered the first six prophets up with construction paper.  Then (before primary started) I hung miniature versions of those covered prophets around the room (mini versions provided by Leafy Treetops Blog here).  We then played Hot & Cold to guide one of the children to the first, second, third prophet, etc.

(Hot & Cold is singing or humming the song while you have a "seeker" looking around the room.  The LOUDER the singing gets, the closer they are. The QUIETER they sing, the further away. Pick a new seeker each turn.)

I had junior primary hum the song so they could become VERY comfortable with the notes of the song. It can seem a bit all over the place to the little ones, especially when you toss in all those new/tune names.  The kids seem to always find the missing prophet right around "David Ooooooo McKay".  I like to point out those little tidbits to help the kids recognize different parts of the song.

Once the missing prophet is found, we uncover the big version and make sure they are a match.  As a side note, with the little ones, I had the "seeker" come up and face me.  I think asked the rest of the primary to point (no words!!!) where we were going to guide our seeker -- just to make sure we all were on the same page. This helped a lot. Senior primary is old enough that the seeker quickly stepped out of the room and then I had the rest of the kids talk with each other to figure out where to next. I never helped them and this made it all the more fun if they were wrong!

It can also be helpful to point out physical features on each prophet to help them remember.  For instance:

Lorenzo Snow's beard looks just like snow!!

I'm sure you can think up other features to help.  Like...who was the first prophet (after our first Joseph Smith) to NOT have a beard?!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Latter-Day Prophets

Can I just say again how grateful I am to all of you Primary Choristers that put in so much work and are so willing to share with all of us?  Thank you, thank you!

A big THANKS to "In the Leafy Treetops..." blog. She has done some amazing hand-outs for learning Latter-Day Prophets and our singing time tomorrow will be super fun because of her!

Need ideas for learning Latter-Day Prophets (Children's Song Book, pg 134)? GO HERE! Don't forget to use her PDFs that she so kindly is sharing.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Hymn #239 "Choose The Right": 2nd Verse

I have used this method a lot (mostly with the senior primary, who can read).  I write out the entire verse on a large poster board.  Then, under each word, I number 1 through 6.  After we sing the song a few times, I then have a square cardboard box with numbers 1-6 on it.  A child comes up, rolls a number.  Whatever number comes up I use construction paper and/or post-it notes to cover up all the words with that number under it.  To keep it interesting, I use my silly song cards to change the way we sing the song each time.

With junior primary, I left the poster board up for teachers to see and then we just sang it over and over with the silly cards.  I did start by reading the words and explaining what they meant.  I feel like the kids remember the words better if they just aren't these big, ominous words that don't mean anything.  You can also start singing line by line in a silly manner.

Variations for this method that would work:

- Use a dry erase board and/or wet-wipe board and erase the words
- Use a flannel board with the words as flannel posts and pull down the words
- Don't use the "dice" and just have children choose a number between 1-6

Now, my picture below is not my best work, but hopefully you get the idea. :-)

Sing it a few times like you see below. Free for them to read.

See the numbers under the words?

Eventually all the words will be gone.