Sunday, July 28, 2013

Song Hospital - 9/8

There are a LOT of versions of the "Song Hospital" Review tool out there!  This one from Primary Singing Ideas is my favorite.  If you can't get permission to take up Sharing Time, then you could adapt it a bit to ONLY use the songs that need work - so they will all START in the Emergency Room and then need to be discharged.  I will let one of the kids be the doctor - but the grading comes from me and the presidency - instead of bringing in another person.

Everything below is from Primary Singing Time Ideas HERE:

Before hand, I asked a brother in our ward to be our Doctor. I picked this brother in particular, because he has a background in music, which is helpful for "diagnosing" our primary.

I made this board from a tri-fold display bought at target. I spent WAY too much time drawing my "floating" hospital (I think I still need some lessons in art and drawing 2 dimensional figures...) So hopefully you can think of something MUCH simpler.

The inside is pretty boring. I ran out of time to decorate it more...which may be a good thing. :)

The inside says "Primary Song Hospital."

On each of the three sections, I taped the edges of a file folder together, and taped that on to each section. The sections were labeled "waiting room", "Emergency Room" and "Discharge".

I printed out forms for each of the songs, with a separate sheet for each verse. I was worried that we would run out of time. After having done it, I would recommend having one sheet per song, despite the number of verses. We weren't able to get through all of the songs.

I placed all of the sheets in the folder labeled "Waiting Room"

I did this on the 5th Sunday, on which I have the entire singing/sharing time for just singing.

I introduced our Doctor, outfitted with a white lab coat, stethoscope around his neck, and a clipboard. Then we had a volunteer "nurse" pick out a patient to be diagnosed. The nurse gave the paper to the Doctor, and we sang the song, then had the Dr. tell us our diagnosis. Our Doctor did a fantastic job in telling them "good news" and "bad news".

If the song got below a 4 in any category (words, smiles, watching chorister, melody, etc.) then it was sent to the emergency room. For Juniors, I'd pick an "ambulance driver" to drive the paper to the emergency room, and we all made siren noises.

If the song was discharged (meaning only 4 or 5's) then the entire primary received a squirt of "Miracle Spray". This is just lemon crystal light in a spray bottle. I told the kids to say "AHHH" if they wanted some, and if they didn't to just keep their mouths closed. THIS was a HUGE hit.

I wish we had been able to go through all the songs and then had time to work on getting the Emergency Room patients discharged...but maybe next time.

Review Game: What's My Line

Divide the Primary into two teams.  At first, split the room in half down the middle, but later try mixing it up with girls vs. boys, kids vs. teachers, etc.

Hold a flag or colored piece of paper in each hand, one color for each team. When a team's color is RAISED, it's their turn to sing.  Another option - if you've made the TRAFFIC LIGHT, turn it sideways and use the light for up to three teams (Red, Green, and Yellow).

Start by swapping line by line - have one side of the room sing the first line, the other sings the second, etc.  After they get the hang of it, switch it up and swap mid-line, etc.  Give some of the older kids a chance to come up and direct the game.  If you like, stand between the two teams and have them face each other.

To add a little competition for Sr. Primary (totally up to you, some primaries do well with competition and some don't), if a team flubs a line the other team gets a point.  To make it trickier, go a cappella so they don't have the piano to fall back on.  NO TEACHERS SINGING for this one!

If you have some brave soloists, try a duel between two kids at a time, or two classes at a time.


Review Game: Spin the Kid

Our Primary loves this classic review game, and it couldn't be much simpler.

- Borrow a spinning office chair from the clerk's office.

- Put it in the front of the room, with 8 1/2 x 11 sheets of paper printed with song names surrounding the chair on the floor.

- Pick a Primary friend to sit in the chair, have them put their legs straight forward (their legs become the arrow), and SPIN!!!

- Whatever song their legs land on is the song you sing next.

Review Game: Nerd is the Word

Well, I'm back from vacation!  Today I will use my Summer Vacation Suitcase idea, but I want to throw in an extra challenge for Sr. Primary.  I plan to incorporate the "Nerd is the Word" or "Word Nerd" game Camille posted about HERE.  It's very similar to the "Missing Word Hat" game I'll use in September.

I've got some goofy glasses, and will bring a stack of Post-It Notes and a Sharpie.  Just write a word from the song on the Post-It, put it on the volunteer's forehead, and do not sing that word.  Once the volunteer guesses the word, it's the next person's turn.

I don't want this to be TOO easy for Sr. Primary, so I will have a list ready of words they can pick from to make sure the volunteer doesn't guess it three words in.

Since I don't want to embarrass anyone, this will be a volunteer-only game.  I plan to reward my volunteers with a small treat.

Thanks for the ideas and for the kind comments!!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Music Memory Game/Back to School - 8/18

I know I'm getting way ahead in my planning, but I always want to write these plans down before I forget them.  It's funny though, often I will be stressing on Friday or Saturday thinking I don't have enough planned, and then I will check the blog and remember all the stuff I've already planned and it's always more than enough!  Obviously I am not a great last-minute planner!

I figure that August 18 (since our Stake Conference is the last Sunday in August) will be a good time for a "Back to School" activity.  This idea is from LiveCraftEat HERE and from Sofia's Primary Ideas HERE.

The main activity will be refreshing their memorizing skills with a MUSIC MEMORY GAME - naturally with PROGRAM SONGS.  Our Primary Friends will take turns trying to match a song, and once they get the match we will sing it.

Here are the JPEGS of my Matching Game; the PDF is HERE.  Print the cards and mount them on different-colored cardstock or colored paper; use small magnets to attach them to the board.

The songs:
Lead Me/Guide Me: I Am a Child of God
Bird/Butterflies: My Heavenly Father Loves Me
One missionary each card: I Want to Be a Missionary Now
Family/Infinity: Families Can Be Together Forever
I Want to/Live the Gospel: I Want to Live the Gospel
Child Praying/He is There: A Child's Prayer
Rainbow/Baptism Picture: When I Am Baptized
Savior and boy: If the Savior Stood Beside Me
Church Logo: I Belong to the Church of Jesus Christ
Some School-Related Activities to use while singing (all from Sofia's):
Balance an apple on your head or back of your hand
Art! Art! Art! Draw a picture on a piece of paper on your forehead of a cat.
Solve math problems on a calculator- as a  side note, the Holy Ghost is like a calculator! Yup! It's true, He just makes solving problems easier!
Book stacking & balancing into towers
Write the words of the song in the air with your finger pencil
Eraser toss into a pencil case
Pass the pencil using your elbows
And of course you can't forget P.E! Jog in place, knees high!!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Salad Tong Music Dynamics

Our previous chorister did this a few times - super easy and no prep other than popping them in your church bag!  Open the tongs wide for LOUD, close them slowly for SOFTER.  Let the kids have a turn leading the dynamics of the song.

Teaching "A Child's Prayer" - UPDATED

Our Primary knows August's song, "A Child's Prayer", pretty well, so I didn't need to spend much time introducing it.  The teachers will be singing the second verse in the program, but I made sure the kids know it as well, especially since it has the answers to the questions from the first verse.

I began by telling them how HAPPY my grandma is whenever I call her and asked if the kids had anyone like that who loved it when they called.  They answered with grandmas, grandpas, cousins, etc.  I told them the Lord loves to hear from us too.

Then, using a printed flip chart (HERE - I wish the words were just key words, but I love the artwork she found.  Note, though, that there is a typo so I just whited it out and fixed it (see comments)), I had Primary Friends come up and each hold a page while we talked about the meaning of the words, especially "suffer the children to come to me" and "of such is the kingdom of heav'n".

In between verses, I had the kids close their eyes and asked for absolute silence.  I asked them to remember the last time they prayed REALLY HARD for something.  What was it for?  How did they feel?

After they opened their eyes, I gave them the chance to share their stories.  It was really sweet, and definitely brought a reverent spirit to both Jr. and Sr. Primary.  I shared a personal story as well (see bottom), then asked: "Now here is a TOUGH QUESTION - what if your prayers aren't answered the way that you WANT?"

Hearing their responses to this tough question was really touching.  I gave them the analogy that if my kids came to me before dinner and asked for a cookie, what would I say?  No, of course.  But what if they REALLY REALLY REALLY wanted the cookie and said PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!?!?  As their mom, I know that even though they want the cookie, it wouldn't be best for them.  Sometimes our Father in Heaven also has us wait for things we want, and we have to trust that He knows best.

When we finished the song, I bore my testimony that the Lord wants to hear from them, and that he will always be available to them.
Another option: Post word strips of the QUESTIONS the song asks on the board (are you really there, do you hear and answer every child's prayer) and post the answers as we go over the second verse.

I also posted some PICTURES around the room of children praying.
Here are a few prayer-related stories from the Friend:

Summer Vacation Suitcase

I'm headed to the beach in two weeks for a family reunion, hooray!  I will have a sub on the 21st, but will get back just in time to do singing time on the 28th.  What better time to use the Summer Vacation Suitcase idea from Pattie's Primary Place?

I'll bring one of my kids' suitcases or backpacks filled with some of the following vacation items:

(The Church of Jesus Christ 77 or Book of Mormon Stories)

(Familes Can Be Together Forever 188)
(If the Savior Stood Beside Me)
(Families Can Be Together Forever 188)
(I Want to Live the Gospel 148 - smiles/"to know that I will be happy")
(Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam 60)
(My Heavenly Father Loves Me 228 - beauty of the earth)
(I Want to Be a Missionary Now 168)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Families Can Be Together Forever, part II

I'm very excited to do my "Families Are Our Greatest Treasure" singing time tomorrow.  I found some really cool things to share, including a patch my grandfather wore in WWII.

I am also adding THIS wonderful build-a-temple tool from The OCD Chorister to teach the song.  You add a piece for each part of the song you teach.  Thanks, Erin, for your great graphics!!