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Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!

I love tweaking a song...

I sang this with the kids yesterday and I will do it again on the first Sunday of the new year.  I had this ridiculous party hat that I wore, asking them how they were going to celebrate the new year.

To the tune of Happy & You Know It:

Happy, Happy New Year To You
Happy, Happy New Year To You

The year has come to an end
We give thanks to our dear primary friends

So we sing Happy New Year To You
Echo (to you! - giving a sort of a cheer with your hand/arm)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Best of 2012

So how do we spend the last Sunday of the year?  I have been thinking for a few weeks, wondering if we should just continue Christmas stuff since we only get on month a year to do it.  But then I thought of having the BEST of 2012.  We have learned alot this year and why not celebrate it one last time before we start the new regime of learning all the stuff for 2013.  This singing time is simple.  I made 6 labels for 6 bags, numbering the bags 1-6.  Then I have a dice.  They roll the dice and whatever number they roll coordinates with the number on the bags.  Inside the bags, there are strips with all the songs we have sung and learned through the year.  We will never get through them all as they are like over 50 songs between all the bags, but they should get a taste of what we've sung over the past 365 days.

Here are my categories:

The best of program songs (our ward had 13 program songs)
Sneak Peek of 2013 program songs (there are 13 of these as well)
The best of the 4 seasons (5 little Pumpkins, Have you Ever Seen a Turkey, Pioneers songs, patriotic... anything you we have sung coordinating with a holiday or a season)
Temple Spotlight songs (we did a temple spotlight in opening exercises and learned all the songs in the book having to do with temples - 4 songs)
Fun Songs we have learned (like the Books of the Book of Mormon, latter-day prophets, ect...anything random I threw in the mix over the year for fun)
Article Of Faith Songs- We learned all 13

We will be singing a marathon on Sunday.  If they get restless, I have my jar of sticks that spice up how we can sing songs, like HUM, OOO, STAND FACE BACK OF ROOM, ect...!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Primary Props

I always bring things in my 'Mary Poppins' bag (not a lamp post mind you), just in case time lags or singing a song over and over gets tiresome.  Here are some simple primary props that you can having in your bag of tricks each week.  I made these just using free clip art from the web, printing it out and putting it on construction paper, and taping a dowel/stick to it.  They are two sided.  You can use just one side or if you want them to be really attentive, you can flip the signs around while you are singing.

1)  Front- Stand Up/Back- Sit Down
2)  Front- Sing Reverently/Back - mouth words(silent singing)
3)  Front- Sing Loud/Back Sing Soft
4)  Front- Sing Like Primary Angels/Back- OOOO instead of words
5)  Front- Sing Opera Style/Back- Sing with a country twang

The final picture are of 3 sticks I made while we are doing a new song.  If they are singing strong, you hold up the strong sign so they know if they are doing well...if they aren't doing so well, hold up the WEAK sign so they are encouraged to sing stronger.  The KEEP GOING sign is for when they are singing pretty good but can do better.  The goal is to have the STRONG SIGN up through the whole song. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Getting A Clue

So I am really not a techy/computer person.  The fact I have a blog at all is kinda a miracle.  Anyway, after some serious work, I figured out how to categorized my posts into labels.  At the bottom of the page, you can see that all my posts are finally under labels and you can search for ideas now.  As a new year approaches, I will be reusing some of my ideas that I have already done this year.  Thanks for being patient!  I have added several Christmas ideas and now there are all 11 Christmas ideas total. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

Christmas Bells Are Ringing

Last week I brought in a strange assortment of instruments, some I have purchased, others came from children's music kits, ect.  We sang Christmas Bells Are Ringing...did it about 4 times, changing the bell ringers each time.  Kids love to play instruments.  It was quite the little band performance! 

The Manger

I always wanted a manger and one year my husband made me one.  We put it under our tree each year so that the focus isn't just the presents but rather the real gift of Christmas.  I saw on sugardoodle and idea with the manger.  Putting hay in it as the children sing well, to get it full enough to place the baby Jesus in it.  I think this is a sweet idea for the juniors.  A week ago we sang Away In A Manger and I let the Sunbeams take turns holding the baby while we sang.  So I am going to bring this in and see if we can get the hay to the top so we can place the baby in it.  If you don't have a manger, a box or crate would do.  Or if you can beg your husband to make you one...! 

The Nativity Song

I love the Nativity Song, it really does tell the entire story of Christ's birth.  On, they have the clip art to nativity scene from the 1980 December Friend.,+(publication%3a"Friend")

You can print this out, color, laminate it and put it on sticks.  I have the lyrics written out as this is a long song (newsprint tablet).  As we sing the song, the person holding the particular stick that coordinates with the verse, comes into play until all the characters are together to create the Nativity scene.  This could be done with costumes as well, not using the clip art props.  This is a way to tell the story through song, getting audience participation.

The Gift Of Christmas

It is not unusual for me to do several gimmicks in one Sunday, trying to keep it fresh.  I don't know if this particular activity would last an entire singing time, but it might be fun to incorporate with another activity or general singing!  Use at the end of a singing time.

I had this thought to pass a present around while the pianist plays a Christmas song from the book.  When the music stops, the child who has the gift has to name the Christmas tune and say what gift they are grateful for this season.  When the time is nigh to quit, the last person the present ends on will get to open the gift.  Before he/she does this, I will ask them collectively what the best gift of Christmas is?  I am hoping they will know the right answer, which may include:

The baby Jesus
The atonement
The gospel
The Lord

Inside the box will be enough hug/kisses candies for the group.  I will explain that the best gift we get is the gift of LOVE, which is our Savior who came a baby in a stall, who did atone and die for sins that we may live again.  And what we give to him this season is to show that same love to those around us. 

I rarely bring treats to primary but I think the Sunday before Christmas will be an okay Sunday to hand out a small piece of candy to the kids!