Wednesday, January 6, 2010

January week 2: Repetition!

So, last week, we introduced the song, and sang it through once or twice.

This week's goal is just to repeat like crazy, but not let them get bored.

For my repeat week, I desperately tried to come up with an original idea, but let's face it, I'm just not that creative. :) so, I'm adapting an idea from Sofia's primary ideas.

The idea is to get some smaller, white dry-erase boards. She mentioned you could get them at Target or the dollar store. I couldn't find them at either, so forked out a few more bucks at wal-mart. I have plans to use them for other things, so I'm considering it an "investment." :) Of course, you can always use just the chalkboard. The erase-boards are nice because of A) color, and B) That the rest of the primary can't really see what is being drawn until it is time for the reveal! (I think I've watched too many reality shows...)

Bascially, it's a game of pictionary. :)

For Junior primary: We'll review the song once, and then I'll call up two children to come and illustrate something that shows that Heavenly Father Loves them. (i.e. families, nature, gospel, etc.) (I'll have a jar of paper strips if they need an "idea"

While they are "illustrating" we will sing through one verse of the song with the chorus. We'll alternate verses, to make sure they get practice singing.  When we are done singing, it is time for them to be done coloring, and to show their picture to the primary, where we (the primary) will then guess what their picture is of.

I plan on using the popsicle stick idea to help me pick my helpers, but The Crazy Chorister has some great ideas on other helper-picker methods.

I'm hoping that with the 20 minute allotment for singing time, all of the children will get a turn. We have about 30-40 in Jr and 20-30 in Sr.

for Senior: I'm trying to make it a little bit harder, and so they have to pay attention to the song more. They will be asked to illustrate a line of the song while we sing a verse, and then we'll have to guess which line they drew.

 I'll have a jar with the following lines written on separate strips of paper, so they don't take too long trying to pick out a phrase: click HERE for the word file, or PDF file, so all you have to do is cut up the strips and stick them in a jar.  

Since two children will be drawing at one time (each on separate boards) I'm going to have them illustrate the same idea. It will be fun to see the different interpretations!

Once all of the papers have been drawn, we'll stick them all back in again until we run out of time.

Here are the phrases for the wordstrips...

A long time ago in a beautiful place
children were gathered 'round Jesus
Parents and teachers will help guide the way
Lighting my path everyday
I did not touch him or sit on his knee
Now I am here in a beautiful place, learning the teachings of Jesus
Wrapped in the arms of my Savior's love, I feel is gentle touch
My heart I give to him
Each saw the tears on his face
I will follow faithfully
home to my Father above
I know that my savior loves me


  1. Thanks for sharing. That's a fun idea!

  2. Wow! This is great!! Makes me long for the good 'ol days of being a primary chorister . . .
    Fantastic ideas!! Love it!

  3. Okay so where did you get those boards and how much are they?
    Ashlee Andersen

  4. I used this idea this week. It was my first week at this calling. The kids loved it and it was a great way to get to know them. Thanks so much!! I look forward to following your blog!

  5. Thanks! I love the idea! I think I will try it at the end of the month to review the whole song!

  6. When you teach a song do you always have the picture prompts posted even when you are doing hand actions to try to remember the words? I am never really sure when I should put the pictures away and have them rely on their memories. I want to be as effective as possible. Also, once they have learned the song, do you stop doing the hand actions? I don't know sign language but I have made up a few hand actions to go with our new song. What do you suggest?
    Thank you!

  7. Jean,

    When I first introduce a song, I almost ALWAYS use picture prompts. I believe it helps the kids understand what the song is about. Then, if I am going to do sign language, or hand actions, I don't have the pictures. It's too hard for me to hold up the pictures, and do the signs at the same time. Besides, the kids can only really focus on one thing at a time, and the hand actions should serve as a "visual prompt" and remind them the words of the song.

    That being said, I usually just pick one song to do sign language in. The church has sign language helps on their website if you need help. If you are just doing an occasional sign here and there, I would use the visuals longer, taking one away at a time, until they really know the song. Then you can add in simple visuals, like pointing to your head for "know", etc. when the signs just make sense. Kid's aren't going to remember all the signs by themselves, and are just playing copycat with you,

    But that's just my opinion. Do what works for you! I think the main point is to make each repetition of the song have purpose and meaning. For example, one time, have them listen to the words, a second time, have them sing with you, another time, add in an action. I don't recommend doing the EXACT SAME thing more than once when they are trying to learn it.

    I hope that helps! Let me know if you still have questions!

  8. Thank you so much. You have been very helpful. I have made up hand actions to "I Know That My Savior Loves Me". I don't know that I necessarily always want them to do the hand actions when we sing. I would like them to know the words without using the hand actions but I find that they are more engaged when they are doing something. So I don't really know what to do.

  9. I love your ideas and I to agree with only doing one thing at a time. This new song is so easy for them to learn by doing hand actions and it's been much better this time without the picture prompts. But I always do both just not together.

  10. I used this idea last week, and it was such a success--I bought two white boards that were big enough to draw a line down the middle and have two kids on each board. That way lots of artists got a turn! Thank you for your time and effort with this blog--it's immensely appreciated by me. I'm praying blessings upon you for your creativity!