music background

Monday, October 29, 2012

2013 Theme, I Am A Child Of God

So I have been mulling over next year's theme for a month now.  Nothing has to be decided today but I kinda want to have a game plan.  My ward's program went really well this year and I'd like to keep that momentum going.  I did some special things with quite a few of the songs for this year's program, making the performances unique.  One thing that I did was I found a really cool arrangement for CHOOSE THE RIGHT that involved the congregation.  It had really neat accompaniment and a "tag" on the end so the kids sang this little part at the end to finish the song off by themselves.  It was nice addition to the program.

Not sure if any of you follow Jenny Phillips but each year, she puts out a CD of the primary songs with arrangements of the songs that are a tad different than what you find in our standard hymn book and primary song book.  This year she is collaborating with another musician.  This gal is going to have free down loads of all the music for next year...COOL arrangements of every song.  I think it will be worth looking at when she posts it.  Here is the link:

Also, not sure if any of you are familiar with the Beebe Sound.  He is an LDS composer who specializes in hymn/song arrangements for choir/group singing that include the congregation in the 3rd or last verse.  His work is so pretty.  He is the one who wrote the arrangement of CHOOSE THE RIGHT that I used this year.

Turns out he has a really neat version of I AM A CHILD OF GOD.  It is for SATB but I think the kids could just sing the soprano part and then the congregation could join in for the 3rd verse.  It has accompaniment for both piano and organ and there is an optional flute obbligato.  Could be pretty.  Here is his link:

Just some things to think about...
Thanks, Brittany

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Turkey Tracks

What day of the week does Thanksgiving always fall on?
How long did the first Thanksgiving feast last?
Where did the first Thanksgiving feast take place?
What was the ship called that the pilgrims sailed on?
Why did the pilgrims come to America?
How did Thanksgiving become an annual holiday?
What is your favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner?
Where are you spending the holidays this year?
What did the Indians bring to the first Thanksgiving feast?
True Or False:
We should only be grateful on Thanksgiving Day?
How often should be thank our Heavenly Father for the blessings he gives us?
What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert?
Name A Blessing that you have.
Name A Blessing that you have.
Name A Blessing that you have.
Name 3 things you usually eat at Thanksgiving?
Name a blessing you see right now in this room?
Was there turkey at the first Thanksgiving feast?
Finish this phrase: We thank thee O God for a _______________
Finish this phrase:
Count your many blessings name them_________
Why is Thanksgiving important to you?
How do you show gratitude?
How many Indians came to the first Thanksgiving dinner?
Which state in the USA was the first to celebrate Thanksgiving annually?


Here are the answers to the questions
Q:  What day of the week does Thanksgiving fall on? A: The 4th Thursday of every November
Q:  How long did the first feast last? A:  THREE days
Q:  Where did the first feast take place? A:   Plymouth, Massachusetts
Q:  What was the ship called that the pilgrims sailed on? A:  The Mayflower
Q:  Why did the pilgrims come to America? A: To seek religious freedom
Q:  How did Thanksgiving become a national holiday? A:  President George Washington declared it a national day of thanks but it took years for it to become an annual event across the 50 states, not until President Lincoln, was it celebrated every year by all Americans.
Q:  What did the Indians bring to the first Thanksgiving feast? A:  DEER
Q:  True or False, we should only be thankful on Thanksgiving day. A:   FALSE
Q:  How often should be be thankful? A:   Every day
Q:  Finish the phrase...we thank thee o god for a ..... A:  PROPHET
Q:  Finish the phrase...count your many blessings names them...A:  ONE BY ONE
Q:  How many Indians came to the first feast? A:  90 and they were of the Wampanoag Tribe
Q:  Which state was the first to celebrate the holiday annually? A:  New York
Q:  Was there turkey at the first Thanksgiving feast? A:  Nobody knows for sure but it is said there is no real record of any kind of turkey eaten at the first Thanksgiving dinner.

I can't take credit for this one.  My sister did come up this idea.  It is a game board free handed on a poster board.  You divide the goup in into two and see which team (side) gets to the end first.  You roll a dice, just like any old board game.  There are squares that have PICK A CARD on it.  The cards have questions about Thanksgiving on it.  There are also SINGING SQUARES.  You could make your own version of this.  It could be really simplified drawing wise as well if you are not a drawer.  The cards were just printed on orange cardstock.

My Wreath of Plenty

I saw this idea in Family Fun Magazine, too.  It's not a singing time, but I can make it one!  I just covered a embroidery ring with burlap.  Then using push pins, I stuck these leaves (made from construction paper) into the simple wreath.  I have noticed that sometimes when you ask kids questions of what their favorite song or thing is, they are at a loss for words.  So this is just to help kids think...choose a helper, have them pick a leaf.  What are you grateful for?  They pick a leaf and explain why they are grateful for what is written on the leaf.  The blessing has a song that coordinates. 

Temples - I Love To See The Temple
Families - Love Is Spoken Here or Families Can Be Together Forever
Brothers & Sisters - We Are a Happy Family
My Savior - I Feel My Savior's Love
Sun - Sun Beam
Water - Give Said the Little Stream
Dad - Daddy's Homecoming
Mom - I often Go Walking
School - FUN TO DO (Going to school is fun to do)
Sports - FUN TO DO (Playing soccer is fun to do)
FOOD - FUN TO DO (eating pizza is fun to do)
Heavenly Father - I know my father lives
Prayer - I pray in faith

Drum Stick Hide & Seek

So my FAMILY FUN magazine came and this was in it and I just laugh out loud when I saw it.  They use it as a game, but it could totally be morphed into a singing time.  It's just a brown lunch sack filled with crumpled plastic sacks (or I used shredded paper) and then you squeeze the bottom skinny and wrap and tape it with a white napkin and voila- it looks like a turkey drum stick.

You can use this so many can pass it around and when the music stops, they have to name a blessing.  Or you can do HOT & COLD and hide it.  You could use it as a LEADER stick and have the kids beat the pattern of a song with it in hand.  Pretty funny...and cute.  I had to post it for kicks!

Turkey Dinner

Okay, excuse the horrendous visual of this.  Alot of what I have is from years ago which was before things were in LINK or PDF forms.  This picture is of the old nursery rhyme song, Frere Jacques or commonly known as ARE YOU SLEEPING.  My mother came up with alternate lyrics to this long when I was a kid which is LONG ago.  We sing this every November.  It is so silly but really fun.  The kids love it.  You can see if the net has this song posted somewhere or perhaps from this photo, you can detect the simple accompaniment to this little song.  It could be played one handed even and by ear.

Turkey Dinner
Turkey Dinner
Gather 'round
Gather 'round
Who will eat the drum stick
Yummy, yummy yum stick
All sit down, All sit down

Corn bread muffin
Chestnut stuffin'
Pumpkin Pie
One foot high
We were all much thinner
Before we came to dinner
Me-O-My, Me-O-My

There are two verses to this song.  You can sing it straight through or you can sing it in a round. 

Turkey Bowl

I got this years ago.  It is a turkey bowl game.  You put the balloon between the pieces. I have 5 of them and set them up in bowling formation and with a ball, the kids try to knock the turkeys down.  The feet have pennies taped to the bottom of them to weight them down.  It's a cute game and the kids love it.  Hopefully this template will work if you click on it and print.

Once the kids have a turn bowling, you sing a song.  Either the songs can be taped to the feet of the turkeys or you can just pick a song after they knock them down.

Have You Ever Seen A Turkey

I am going to attempt to post my NOVEMBER ideas.  I really think Thanksgiving is such a special holiday but often gets overshadowed by Halloween and Christmas.  Now that the program is over (whew), we are just going to have fun in primary. I think I will teach the kids CHILDREN ALL OVER THE WORLD on pg 16.  It's not one we ever sing but it's a classic and has a good message.

Also, here's a spin on an oldie but goodie.  HERE WE ARE TOGETHER, pg 261.  Change the words to HAVE YOU EVER SEEN A TURKEY.

Have you ever seen a turkey, a turkey, a turkey?
Have you ever seen a turkey on Thanksgiving day?
Move this way (move to right) move that way (move to the left)
Have you ever seen a turkey, move this way or that.

I did this last year and put these funny little feather hats on me and my helpers, which I found at JoAnn's Fabric Store but you could make them or perhaps find them there again this year.  Often Target has strange things like this in their $1-Spot section.  Anyway, we had all the kids stand and sing this song and do their turkey dance.  Good times.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Trick Or Treat

Okay, I totally stole these ideas.  These were two seperate ideas and I combined them.  You could just use one or the other.  This game is posted on BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS as a party game.  They made their cans out of soup cans.  I didn't have a variety of soup cans lying around so I used pails I had and covered them with construction paper and put faces on them.  How to play...

So you get a small ball, like a bouncy ball, and line the pails up on the floor at varying lengths, or you could even set some on boxes to elevate them.  Pick a helper.  The helper gets to choose how difficult he/she wants his/her challenge.  It is easier to get the ball in the bigger pails.  The smaller the pail/can, the harder it is to make a basket.  Whether they get the ball in or not, have them then pick a card out of the pail they were trying for.

I made several cards some saying TRICK and some saying TREAT.  The Treat cards are all songs, and I put autumn seasonal songs on the back but you can put whatever songs you want on the back.  The Trick cards are silly Halloween riddles.  Again, some people might find it's weird to do this at church but I am a firm believer in making singing time fun and so some harmless jokes don't worry me too much.  If you don't want to do riddles, you could have the TRICK be like hide the object or make them do something like, stand on one leg and touch your nose, ect....  I totally morphed this orginal idea to suit me and you can do the same.  There is one Sunday left to play off of Halloween and so I am going to do this come Sunday.  We had a really great program last week and I feel the kids deserve a play day before he start Christmas songs!

What is a skeletone's favorite musical instrument?  A:  A Trom-BONE!
What does a bird say at Halloween?  A:  Twick or TWEET
What does a panda ghost eat?  A:  Bam-BOO
What pants do ghosts wear?  A:  Boo-jeans
What kind of TV is in a haunted house?  A:  A wide-SCREAM
What did the pumpking put on his boo-boo?  A:  A pumpkin PATCH
WHy didn't the skeleton want to dance?  A:  Because he had NO-body to dance with
Why did the little ghost cry?  A:  Because he wanted his MUMMY
What do you call a nervous witch?  A:  A T-WITCH
How do ghosts like their eggs?  A:  Terror-fried
What kind of streets do zombies live on?  DEAD-ENDS

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pumpkin Patch

So I free handed this scene, copying something my sister did years ago.  It is a bunch of pumpkins, some with eyes and some with mouths, but they are all missing something.  So in a bucket, there are the missing pieces.  You can go on a hunt for these pieces, or have them in a bag to pick out or a whatever.  Have the kids put the faces of the  jack-o-lanterns together and at the end, you have a cute little spooky pumpkin patch scene.  Happy Halloween!

autumn leaves

So the leaves have so many uses.  You can use these so many ways.  How I used them, I put them in a bucket and then I let a helper spill them out all over the floor.  Then the helper "raked"  the scattered pile and then I asked them to pick ONE up.  On the back of the leaves are a variety of songs, program review, seasonal songs (Leaves Are Lalling All Around, Autumn Time, Five Little Pumpkins), & I also put questions on the back about school or the season that didn't have any song at all.  The kids thought this was fun. Each time I scooped them up and let the kids dump them out. We are starting to have many leaves all on the ground and so it was an appropriate one to do last week!  The leaves were free handed...using contruction paper and sharpie markers, really easy. I laminated them so they would last.

Love Halloween

I love putting spins on songs in the primary book.  Some might find this a bit sacreligious for primary but I did last year and didn't get in trouble, so I am doing it again.  I LOVE the song
(it has so many ways to spin it!)
So I just printed Halloween clip art, laminted it and glued it to a stick.  Put the sticks in a bucket and the kids pick out a stick and sing HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT
GHOST:  If You're a Ghost and you know it , then say BOO.  BOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Witch:  If A Witch makes you laugh, say HEE, HEE, HEE.  HEE, HEE, HEE!!!!!!!!!!!!
Monster:  If you're a monster and you know it, ROAR.  ROOOOOAR!!!!!!!!!!!!
BLACK CAT:  If you're afraid of black cats, say MEOW.  MEOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
SKELETON:  If you think skeletons are cool, wiggle your bones (have them stand and shake)
The kids think this is hilarious. I find this a fun way to celebrate the season and what kid isn't totally ecstatic that Halloween is on the way?  I know I am excited about it!  So call me a big kid!