February 27, 2011

Hello Language Sticks

This isn't a new concept.  But it was new to me!  I found this idea on another blog and was all over it.  I'm all for changing things up with the regularly sung songs.  So I did some research on the internet & found a list that came from the Salt Lake City Olympic games.  It listed how to say "Hello" in 46 different languages.  So if you haven't caught on by now, this idea is for when the Primary sings the "Hello Song" on pg. 260 to visitors.

My first thoughts were to make country flags.  But then I thought of how cumbersome that would become.  I like to keep these kinds of "helps" simple.  I have one small bucket/container that I keep many of these helps in.  So the less space it takes, the better.  So in the end I chose to just use plain old popsicle sticks.  This way the kids couldn't see the countries as well as if I had made them into flags.

On a popsicle stick, I wrote the nationality-phonetic spelling of foreign language-correct spelling of foreign language.  For example:  Hungarian    [ZEE-yah]     Szia

I only do this for the Sr. Primary.  The Jr. Primary is so small & young that I don't know they could comprehend a different languages.  

Take a look at the S.L.C. list for more languages.  I've kept the list so that IF we get bored with the one's we have, I still have plenty more to choose from.


February 25, 2011

Valentine's Day Eve

I have been neglecting my blogging responsibilities this month!  Life seems to take priority:)

For the month of February, I taught my primary "I Will Follow God's Plan" and "Scripture Power".  I used props to teach both songs.  Because of Stake Conference this weekend, we had just 3 weeks to learn/review the 2 songs.   The kids did a FANTASTIC job!  For week 2, I just wanted to focus on "I Will Follow God's Plan" & get it down.  Week 3 we'll just do "Scripture Power" by playing Hot/Cold.

Because it was Valentine's Day Eve on the 2nd week, I laminated 10 hearts.  (They'll definitely get more use than just this once:)   I wrote on the back of them a way to sing the song, "I Will Follow God's Plan".  I place the hearts around the room (on the walls, piano, podium, closet doors) & had a child choose one.  We then sang the song accordingly.  Once it was sung, we placed the heart on a much larger heart that was posted on the chalkboard.  We wanted to see how many we could get up there.  When our time was up in Jr. Primary, various kids couldn't stand not having ALL the little hearts up there so they went & grabbed the hearts & had me place them up on the big heart to fill it up.  They were giddy with excitement just to see all the hearts up there.  Easy to please!!  Here's the list of ways I wrote on the back of the hearts:

  • Paint a Picture (Jr. Only)
  • Pitch Sticks
  • Crescendo the Crocodile
  • Hold hands and sway to the beat (Jr. Only)
  • Use Girl/Boy signs
  • Your Choice (Sr. Only)
  • Stand/Sit on key word (My, I, will)
  • Take it in (Sr. Only)
  • Color Blobs
  • Skip a word (My, I, will)
  • Use Hum Sign
  • Rhythm accompaniment
So far, the favorite review help objects for both Jr. & Sr. Primary is the Pitch Sticks and Crescendo the Croc.  But they all vote the Croc #1!  The Sr. Primary ended up doing most of the hearts.  They did a wonderful job with Taking It In.  The Primary Pianist & I were amazed at how well they did.  The Jr. Primary didn't get through as many hearts. But the one that made the biggest difference for them was the Rhythm Accompaniment.  I explained to them what a rhythm was by having them place their hand over their heart.  They had to be really, really quiet so that they could concentrate on feeling their heart beats.  Then I had them just lightly tap their fingers on their chest to their own heart beat.  When they understood what the rhythm was, we sang the song & clapped our hands or our laps to the beat.  I would change it up & they'd copy me, always staying on beat.  They loved it!

February 1, 2011

Army Of Helaman

Two teachers chose "Army of Helaman" as their song of choice for our Song of the Heart Singing Time.  I knew this song wasn't well known by most of the primary kids.  And it's also a powerful song that is sung by the missionaries in the MTC.  I found this idea for using shields to help them learn the song on Christy's Clip Art.  Her pictures weren't available to download anymore, though, so I came up with some from my own collection of pictures on my computer.  I also added some key words for some of the pictures & have included those words with the collection of pictures I used.
I made one shield for each verse & the chorus.  I had black foam board already in my stash & I traced a foam shield that I have had for a few years.  I got 2 shields per foam board.  I cut them out using a utility knife.  Don't forget to put an extra piece of cardboard under the foam board where you are cutting.  Unless you don't mind your counter/table gouged:)
To hide the rough edges, I went to Walmart & found some silver metallic duct tape back in their paint section.  They had some awesome fire & peace sign ones as well:)  But I wanted silver.
I glued two pieces of the rough side of velcro on the back, about 3 inches apart.  Then I cut a generous length of the soft piece of velcro to allow the children to fit it around their arms comfortably.  I have quite a bit of velcro in my sewing stash that was just waiting to be put to good use:)  I also have self adhesive velcro that I had cut into smaller pieces & I used those for the back of each picture.  That way the pics are removable & I can use the shields for other activities as well.  (Like "Scripture Power")

The Jr. Primary learned the first verse & chorus.  They did o.k.  They really liked marching in place during the chorus!  The Sr. Primary loved the entire song.  All 3 verses!  Which was great since the teachers who chose this song were both in the Sr. Primary.

Some of the kids didn't really know the story of the Stripling Warriors.  So after talking about it a bit & refreshing their memories they dove right in & sang beautifully!