Saturday, November 17, 2012

Missionaries 'Round the Table!

This Sunday is the first "real" Singing Time for the month for me! 
Last Sunday was our Program and the Sunday before was a big practice!

So it's a missionary-theme this month for Sharing Time.
In thinking of how to incorporate missionary work AND singing Thanksgiving songs (so many fun ones), I've come up with a "MISSIONARIES 'ROUND THE TABLE" idea.

There are so many great rounds in the Songbook.

I brought in things to set the table (we used one of the smaller tables in our Primary room): A tablecloth, cloth napkins, cups, plates and forks!

Because the rounds in the Songbook are split into four, we need four missionaries! 
I called up a pair of boy elders and girl sisters, with fake nametags to tape on. 

After we quickly learned our round, the Primary kids were split up into four groups. 
The missionaries each had an index card labeled 1-4, each with an assignment for when their group sings their line: 
Unfold everyone's napkins and tuck them into the neck of their shirt, stack all the plates, stack all the cups, and put a fork in everyone's cup. This was all pretty much done at the same time since the groups start singing so soon after one another. Made for chaotic table activity and was so funny!

The Primary kids then had to guess which missionary was their group's assigned missionary and what their action was. They guessed pretty well!

Songs for the Rounds:
For Health and Strength, pg. 21a Songbook (an official round)

For Thy Bounteous Blessings, pg. 21b Songbook (an official round)
A Song of Thanks, pg. 20 (can easily be made into a round, I think)
Beauty Everywhere, pg. 232 (can be made into a round probably!)
A Prayer of Thanksgiving, pg. 93 hymnbook (will make into a round for the older kids)

List of all rounds in the Songbook, click here

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Charlie the Reverent!

Today was our Primary Program! It went pretty well and I'm SO GLAD it's over! I kept having nightmares that I'd have a wardrobe malfunction in front of the ward as I led the kids.

After, in Singing Time, I brought in this guy since he was fully armored up! Let me explain below!

Soon after I was called as Music Leader in late January, and saw the theme for the year was "Choose the Right," I thought it might be fun to have a visual that the kids can work towards as they learn the songs for the Program.

I saw a cute idea on another blog and adapted it for our Primary.

I made a construction-paper guy on a large posterboard and brought him in for Singing Time in March.
I told them he needs to put on the whole armor of God this year and let them come up with a name (I took both Junior and Senior's suggestions into account) and he came back the next week with three pieces of armor already (they'd learned January's, February's, and March's songs pretty well already).

I made sure to read them the scripture in Ephesians 6:11-17 that corresponds with each component of armor.
Each month as they learned the song well enough, he got another part of his armor.

Armor = Foil cut out and glued, and a black sharpie! Easy!

And this can be adapted for next year's theme, I Am a Child of God. Maybe the poster can have many children...heading towards the temple. Maybe each song is a stepping stone or something! It can be based on the month's themes.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Container of Props for Nursery!

When I was first called, Nursery was part of my job. It was logistically really tough for me, to juggle 10 minutes there across the building and two 20-minute Junior and Senior Singing Times. After talking with our Primary President, she was more than willing to have the Nursery do music themselves. I've seen Music Leaders do Nursery and I've seen them not do Nursery. If it works, it's great. But if it doesn't, I think it's always a good idea to talk with your Primary President and ask to simplify simplify!

When I was in there, though, I decided to make it easier on myself and put together a big container of props. I put in a small Children's Songbook so I didn't have to lug my big Songbook with me....and I had the following list printed up and in the box too.
That way I could show up, get out the box, and start!
A lot of the props below can be found in dollar stores, Target's dollar section, craft stores, etc. It doesn't have to cost a lot and many props you can make yourself with things around the house. 

The kids really loved it!

1st Article of Faith, 122
Bell bracelet
If You’re Happy and You Know It, 266
In the Leafy Treetops, 240
Book of Mormon
Book of Mormon Stories, 118
Cotton Balls
Popcorn Popping, 242
Roll Your Hands, 274 / My Hands, 273
Jesus Said Love Everyone, 61
The Wise Man and the Foolish Man, 281
President Monson pic
Follow the Prophet, 110
Rattle eggs
Do As I’m Doing, 276
Ribbon sticks
Give Said the Little Stream, 236
Sacrament Cup
The Chapel Doors, 156
Seattle Temple
I Love to See the Temple, 95
Smiley Flower
Smiles, 267
I Am Like a Star, 163
Jesus Wants me for a Sunbeam, 60
Rain Is Falling, 241

Sing or Dare

This was a pretty fun Singing Time and a fun way to review!

I saw this on another chorister blog: Sing or Dare!
Took two 12"x18" sheets of yellow paper and created a "road sign" look to them.

The kids had the choice of SING or DARE. 
SING had different ways to sing the songs we were reviewing.
DARE had a fun quick question or silly activity.
For my ease, I had the SING and DARE cues/clues/directions taped to the back of their respective signs.

It was a nice way to keep the kids engaged and participatory!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Inexpensive Visuals Idea!

As a new Primary Music Leader, I wondered how on earth I could do all the signs and visuals I'd seen other choristers do without breaking the bank (mine or our Primary budget's!).

While I do still use posterboard, especially when I find good deals....and I do use BOTH sides of the posterboard (something I didn't clue into until MONTHS after I was called...d'oh!), one of the greatest ideas I found was good ol' white printer paper!

Super cheap! Paper and tape are my favorite tools.

So I take regular paper, tape it together either lengthwise or the regular vertical orientation, and when I need a bigger "poster board" then I tape them into a grid of four. If I do a careful job with all the seams, it's easy to fold up and open and use. If I am hasty then the seams get kind of wonky and it doesn't fold as easily. 

But in general it's GREAT! 
Here's my paper visuals for Mother's Day and Father's Day songs this year.

Going to the Dentist!

So hard to think of different fun ways to do reviews, right? 
I borrowed my Mom's lab coat and stethoscope and modified an idea I found on another blog. Getting the "cavities" out of the songs!

I drew a person with a big smile and LOTS of teeth on a big poster board.
On each tooth I wrote one song name...the songs we have been reviewing for our Program!

I told the kids we were going to take our songs to the dentist!

Called a kid up, let them put on the doctor coat, and gave them a stethoscope to "listen" for holes in the songs as the kids sang. I asked them to look for 4 things (which would mean four potential cavities!
1. Do they know the words?
2. Do they know the melody?
3. Are they watching me lead them?
4. Are they smiling? 
If they did really well on all four categories of the song, the kid dentist put a "star" on that tooth (with a pencil, since we have Junior and Senior Singing Time!) to show it's sparkling clean!

If they didn't, they drew a black dot on the tooth to indicate a cavity! 
So then we had to work on that cavity!
The dentist chose one of the toothpaste flavors - I had these tacked up to the board next to the smiling guy poster.
On the back of each toothpaste there was written a way to sing the song (since they get so tired of just singing normally!):
1. Stand up and sing
2. Sing to the Primary Presidency (they stood up front)
3. Open the door and sing loud enough for someone down the hallway to hear.
4. Sing softly but with every word clear
5. Sing with your arms around your neighbors
6. Sing while copying hand motions

If they did well and needed to get rid of those cavities, the dentist used the "Singing Time Toothbrush" to erase all of those out! (there was a carefully placed eraser taped to the back of the toothbrush)

It was fun, and especially fun to see how the different kid dentists responded to their peers. One older Senior Primary boy didn't think his friends did well at all and gave them all 4 cavities! Ruthless!