Saturday, July 26, 2014

Primary Program Signs

Use theses signs during the primary program in order to discretely get the children's attention.  I've included the ones I most commonly need.  If you can think of others which would be useful, let me know!

For the song cue cards, I've included my pick, "Love at Home."  Obviously, many of you will have chosen different songs for the months of May and June.  Because of this, I've left the document in Word format so that it can be edited.  You can copy and paste a picture from this link which corresponds with your song and change the caption below the picture.  


Sing Louder


Look up


Get ready to sing "He Sent His Son"

Get ready to sing "I Will Follow God's Plan for Me"

Get ready to sing "I Stand All Amazed"

Get ready to sing "The Family is of God"

Get ready to sing "Love at Home"

Get ready to sing "Baptism"

Get ready to sing "Seek the Lord Early"

Friday, July 25, 2014

Lesson Plans: August 2014

Review Links for the 2014 Primary Program

Keep Track of Which Songs are Ready

Resources for Specific Songs

Best Resources for Reviewing Any One Song at a Time

Polish Up By Working Out the Final Kinks in the 2014 Songs

Best Resources for Reviewing ALL the Program Songs At Once

Alternate Arrangements
2014 Primary Program Arrangements

Links for a Better Performance

Hide and Go Sing

I plan to use this activity to practice the August 2014 song, "Seek the Lord Early."  I'll explain to the children that "seek" means to look earnestly for something, just like you do when you play hide-and-go-seek.  This activity is just a variation on that game.

First, choose a reverent child to leave the room for a moment.  If the child is young, send an adult to wait with him.  While the child is out of the room, choose another child to be "it."  This is the only child who will not sing.  Bring in the first child and have the primary sing him the song that you're working on.  See if he can spot the child who is not singing by the time the song is over.  Stress to the other children that you are all working together.  If the child figures out who is "it," then all of the children have won the game.  If they want to be successful, they will all have to sing their best.


If you have a small primary, you might have the child who is "it" mouth the words but not sing out loud.  This is extremely challenging and my Senior Primary tends to enjoy it.

If you have a larger primary, you can choose several children to be "it" and see how many the child can find before the song is over.

If your primary has too much difficulty with a particular song, it may not be possible to spot the one child who is purposefully not singing.  In this case, you can use a visual cue, such as a necklace or a button which the child who is "it" will wear.  

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

How to keep up with all of our newest ideas and art

Since this isn't my calling anymore, I don't spend as much time as I used to promoting my materials.  That means it's more difficult for me to let you know when I've got new art out.  In order to keep up with all of the latest developments, I suggest that you follow me on Pinterest and Facebook.  That way you'll never miss out on a new idea! Find links at the bottom of the right-side column.

Another great resource to follow is the LDS Primary Choristers Facebook Page.  If you're not already a member, you should be.  The sisters (and brothers) on this page give amazing feedback and ideas.  Plus, you'll frequently find links to ideas from other great bloggers like Camille and Ashlie.  I don't have anything to do with running the page, but I'm still a member. 

2014 Song Swat

I posted this activity last year to get ready for the primary program.  We had great success with it and received loads of positive feedback.  The idea is to help children perfect phrases within the program songs with which the children tend to have difficulty.

To play the game, first print and cut out the pictures (found here) which correspond to the songs you want to review.  You may need to enlarge them in the document.  The pictures I am using are shown below.  Attach these pictures to the board at the front of the room.

Next, print and cut out the phrases that the children have difficulty with.  Fold them in half and place them in a bowl.

Choose two reverent children to come to the board.  Draw a phrase out of the bowl and read it aloud in a clear voice.  When the children know to which song the phrase belongs, they "swat" the corresponding picture on the board.  (To avoid the children hitting each other, you may choose to use fly swatters, feathers, wands, etc. to swat the pictures.)

Have the entire primary repeat the phrase after you until they have mastered it.  Then sing the song (or the appropriate verse of the song), paying special attention to the phrase.

(January)  He Sent His Son
"He sent his son to walk with men, on earth, that we may know."

"And seek for God's light, to direct me from birth."

vs 1:  "Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me"
vs 2:  "Sufficient to own, to redeem and to justify."
vs 3;  "No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat."

vs 2:  "A father's place is to preside, provide,"
vs 3:  "She teaches children to obey, to pray,"
vs 4:  " And when I am a mom or dad, so glad"

(May or June)  Love at Home
"Peace and plenty here abide"
"Time doth softly, sweetly glide"

(July) Baptism
vs 1:  "In the river Jordan's flow"
vs 2:  "To fulfill the law, said Jesus"
vs 3:  "Witness faith in Jesus' word"

"Then go to our Father in fervent prayer"
"I'll keep his commandments; his love will abound"

Monday, July 14, 2014

Activity: Now We Know Our Primary Songs

To encourage the kids to master the program songs for this year, tell them that you are going to write a song.  On a piece of poster board or large paper, draw a musical staff- five parallel horizontal lines 3" apart.  You can add the treble clef (the symbol on the left) if you like, but it's not necessary.

Print the document at the bottom of the page and cut out each of the images.  I've created a music note for each song the children should have learned this year.   As the children master each song, let them add the corresponding music note to the staff.   Make sure to keep them in order, but let the children decide on which line or space they'd like to place the note.  When the children have learned all of the songs and placed all of the notes, have the pianist play the song for them.  Sing the words "now we know our pri-ma-ry songs" to the tune they've written.

May (write in the song of your choice)

June (write in the song of your choice)

July (Baptism)

Seek The Lord Early

I'll seek the lord early, while in my youth,

And he will help me to know the truth.

I'll search the scriptures and find him there,

Then go to our Father in fervent prayer.

I'll seek the lord early, and I'll obey
His living prophets in all they say.

I'll keep his commandments; his love will abound.

I will seek the Lord early, and he will be found.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Lesson Plans: July 2014

  • For the first time since I started blogging, I have chosen not to illustrate the monthly song, "Baptism."  I didn't feel that I could create original clipart that would be reverent enough for the subject matter.  In addition, as I tried to think of a unique way to teach this song, I had a "stupor of thought"-or, in other words, I kept coming back to the same idea.  What I came up with was very similar to those ideas which can already be found on or Camille's Primary Ideas.  Therefore, I decided to instead use my time in creating a review activity, which can be used to repeat the song many times once it has been learned.  As it is slow and flowing, this song is a perfect fit for review with ribbon wands!
  • When the children have learned the song, review with the rock, paper, scissors activity by asking the children to identify which of the three verses several words or phrases belong in.
  • If you are in the USA, try the 4th of July fireworks review activity.  Or, if you're in the Southern Hemisphere, try the snowflake activity.
  • Weeks 3 and 4 of this month focus on the Holy Ghost.  Support that theme and review difficult lines from the program songs with the Still Small Voice Chain.
  • To further emphasize the theme of the Holy Ghost, review the song "As a Child of God," which the children learned in 2012.  It's short and easy but because it is not in the Children's Songbook, it often gets forgotten.
  • Or, to go with the theme of Baptism in weeks 1 and 2, review the song "When I am Baptized."  

Any other ideas?  Share with us in the comments!

Still Small Voice Chain

This activity is particularly useful in reviewing songs about the Holy Ghost, Prophets, or Scriptures.  Explain that the activity shows that a message can be distorted as it is passed from person to person.  That is why it is important to have a direct line from Heavenly Father to ourselves.  We can find this direct line through the Holy Ghost, the Prophet and even the Scriptures.  When we seek guidance from these sources, we can be sure that the answers we receive have not been misinterpreted or mistranslated by others.

1.  Choose about 10 songs (or verses of songs) which you would like to review.  List the line in each song with which the children have the most difficulty.  For example, if you were to choose the song "Baptism," you might choose this line from the second verse, "Now we know that we must also witness faith in Jesus' word."

2.  Choose five to ten children through whom the message will pass.  If convenient to your seating arrangement, you might divide the children by classes or rows.  Whisper the chosen line to the first child, then have that child whisper the line to the second child and so on.

3.  When the message reaches the last child, have him or her say the line out loud.  Ask if the children in the line is correct.  Ask if they can identify the song or verse to which the line belongs.  Briefly discuss the line and what it means.  Have all of the primary children repeat the line with the correct wording.  Sing the song or verse.