Thursday, July 23, 2009

Repeat Parakeet

(I think I got this idea from online somewhere--but it has been over a year ago--so if it is yours--feel free to take credit in the comments!!)

Supplies: Picture(s) of parakeets, dice (I made a large one that I use for all sorts of stuff)

Activity: I started out by showing a couple pictures of parakeets (I used my sons book, but you could get them easily off the internet) and a few fun facts about them.  I finished with the interesting tidbit that some parakeets can be taught to repeat what you say!  I then magically poof-ed them into parakeets so they would have to repeat what I said.  

A child would come up and roll the dice--what ever number they got was how many times the primary would have to repeat what I said.  I would then sing a line of the song, and we would sing it as many times as was on the dice.  Once they get lines, you could do this with two lines grouped together etc. Whatever your needs are.

Then entire time I was being goofy and really playing up the parakeet teacher part.  Have fun with it--be silly--they'll love you for it!

Basically, that was it. . . super simple and the primary LOVED it.  My sunbeam was so excited about it he insisted on wearing a green and yellow stripped polo shirt to church so he could look like a parakeet.  Funny kids!

Monday, July 20, 2009

music lesson and repeat activity

A sister from my previous ward did this once, and I was amazed at how it caught the attention of the kids, so I decided to try it this week.

We are learning Teach me to Walk in the Light this month, and since it is a fairly simple song, this was the perfect activity for it.

I was a music education major at BYU, so I had a conducting baton. I'm not sure where you can purchase one, probably at any music store...

I pulled out my baton and asked the kids what it was. Then we talked about the role of a conductor. A lot of them thought his/her job was to tell the group to play high or low notes. To give them a hint, I conducted "softly" with my left hand palm down as if to say "Shhh!" and my right hand conducted close to me with smaller movements. Then hands shot up everywhere and they realized that a conductor told the group HOW to play/sing.

We tried a few others, such as LOUD, quickly, slowly, staccato, and smoothly. I stopped there with it, but one Sunday, I plan on actually conducting them like a real choir and having them follow the way I conduct.

However, for this week, I brought out this little sign (8 1/2 x 11) on card stock. Then we had a quick lesson about the music symbols and what they meant.

okay, so I couldn't upload it, but it was basically this:


I put a mouse by the pp and a lion by the ff to help remind them which one was soft or loud.

Then I handed my baton to one of the children, and let them drag it up and down the chart to "conduct" us on HOW we should sing. I had to remind them not to move to quickly since it's hard to change your voice that quickly. We only did it a few times, but everyone wanted a try! I'll definitely be bringing this one back, and I'm glad I could get in a quick theory lesson!