Friday, January 23, 2009

milly the church mouse....

How cute is this little mouse. I found him in the clearance bin at Pottery Barn Kids and couldn't pass her up for being our church mouse in singing time. I'm sure some very talented seamstresses could sew one of these pretty easy. But it was worth $4.00 to me. :)

Here are a couple of ideas that I'm going to use her for...
1. Hot and Cold game... Choose a child to go out of the room. Hide the mouse. When the child comes back in, begin singing whatever song you are doing. As the child moves closer to finding Milly, sing louder and softer as the child moves further away from Milly. This game never gets old with children and is a great way to continue to review a song.

2. Introduce the {Junior primary}children to Milly and tell them that Milly really likes to come and listen to the children sing during primary. Milly really likes to hear the sweet sound of music but doesn't like it when the children become loud and irreverent. Milly will get to go to class with a class that is very reverent during singing time.


This is my Arizona snowball for singing time. It's a mesh sponge that I picked up in the Dollar spot at target. I'm sure there are lots of fun things you can do with it. I used it last week {I'm going to use it again this Sunday} to help call on children who are being reverent to either participate, say the next word of a song, or answer a question. Anyway that you use it, it may be best if you are sure to keep the reverence in the primary room by first saying a child's name{someone that is being reverent}, look at them, and then throw the ball to them. Of course, always thank them for being reverent. This helps to make sure you don't have children jumping all over to catch the snowball.

lesson plan, 3rd verse, "I Lived In Heaven"{4}

This is my lesson plan for this Sunday.

Show the children the “Remember Hats” in the suitcase. One of your teachers is going to get to wear one of these hats.

We’ve learned the 1st and 2nd verses to “I Lived In Heaven”. We are going to sing that right now and see how well you remember it. The class that seems to have remembered it the best will get to choose a hat from the suitcase for their teacher to wear. So if you want your teacher to wear one of these funny hats, sing really great.

Sing 1st and 2nd verse.



Show the first picture for the first verse: the first verse talks about where we lived before we came to earth.

Show the first picture of the second verse: The second verse tells the plan that Heavenly Father presented.

Show the first picture of the third verse: The third verse tells about Jesus coming to the earth and that one day we will live a wonderful life with Heavenly Father again.


Assign each class a verse to discuss during their class time(just a few minutes of their leftover time). Have a representative from each class come up and tell what their assigned verse talks about. Go in order…1st, 2nd, 3rd verses.

Post the words to the 3rd verse on a poster with some words missing. Do the Volcanoes activity(at the bottom of this post) to find the words then figure out where they go in the song. Choose reverent children (using the snowball) to come up and put the vinegar in the cups. Get the word from the volcano and have the child write it in on the poster where it goes. They can choose another child to come up and help them if they need help finding where the word belongs.



Use the volcanoes to find the question for each line. Again, use the snowball to choose reverent children to come up and pour the vinegar in the cup. Put numbers on the questions and the cups so that the questions will go in order of the song. Sing each line after finding the question and answering it.

Sing the first line of the third verse. What does Messiah mean? another word of Jesus.

Sing the second line. What is another word for glorious? wonderful, good…Jesus is wonderful for come to the earth for us.

Sing the third line. This life is wonderful but in that line it says that one day we will have a more wonderful life with someone. When will we live an even better life? after we die(leave this life)

Sing the fourth line. Who is waiting for us in Heaven? Father.

Sing the entire 3rd verse together.



This song is very reverent and simple. So lets use our streamers to feel how the song has a nice smooth rhythm.

Post the streamer cards on the chalkboard.


If more time allows, use the water fountain(I'll take a picture and explain this later...I left it at church last week) to meter the song or time the song. OR use the church mouse for the hot and cold game.

If you have more time to sing other songs: (Do the hot and cold game with the little church mouse)

Children All Over The World(16)

The Chapel Doors (156)


Place 2-3 tbsp of baking soda in a cup. Pour about a cup of vinegar in the cup to create the explosion. Either put the food coloring in the vinegar or with the baking soda. I have found though that the food coloring clumps up in the baking soda and you end up not seeing that much color come out of the volcano. Cut up a Styrofoam plate and write the words{or questions} on the Styrofoam with a permanent marker. The Styrofoam is light enough that it will “explode” out of the cup easily.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

teaching the 2nd verse "I Lived In Heaven"

Choose two children to come up and put the pictures in order while they listen you sing the words. I’ll keep singing and I’ll give them 1 minute to get the pictures in the right order. If they don’t get the pictures in the right order in 1 minute then we’ll stop and choose two more children to come and put them in the right order while they listen to me sing the song. And so on...

After getting the pictures in the right order explain the pictures and what some of the bigger words mean.

Then have the children sing it with you adding the hand motion clues. This helps them remember the words better. And whenever you can keep their hands doing something it seems to hold their attention more.
“love”- put hands crossed over heart
“give”- hands out forward from heart
“above”-point up
“Jesus” sign for Jesus (touching both palms)
“Father” sign for Father in Heaven (right palm upwards towards Heaven)

{I tried to do things that had to do with snow since it's January. Because we live in Arizona and the children aren't terribly familiar with snow, we talked about how in lots of other places they are getting snow right now and how we just have to pretend.}

Snowball(a white mesh sponge...I picked one up a the Target dollar spot) - Stop the music, look at a child, say their name and throw the snowball to them to give you the next word. If they can’t give the next word have them throw it back to you. Remember to thank the children who are being reverent during this activity.

Singing Meter- Use Skier Steve to meter the song as they sing it one more time.

Sing "Once There Was A Snowman" {249} with the visual.

Have the teachers read cards that you have prepared with “real lines” and “pretend lines” to the song. Use the snowball to choose children to give the correct answer. Look at a child, say their name and throw the snowball to them. Remember to thank the children who are being reverent during this activity. After playing this game, do all of the other things just like Junior Primary.

"Real lines" and "Pretend Lines" for 2nd verse of "I Lived In Heaven". There are 4 lines in the song. Each line has three options{A, B, C} for the children to choose the correct answer from.
{This idea came from "The Crazy Chorister"}

Line 1:
A. Father said he needed someone who had enough love. {correct answer}
B. Father said he needed someone to say a quick prayer.
C. Brother said someone just say that you'll get me a snack.

Line 2:
A. To go to school so we all could learn long division.
B. To give his life so we all could return there above. {correct answer}
C. To give his life so we all could come to the earth.

Line 3:
A. There was another who wanted to come to the earth.
B. There was another who wanted a cheeseburger for lunch.
C. There was another who sought for the honor divine. {correct answer}

Line 4:
A. Jesus said, "Children send me and the glory be thine".
B. Jesus said, "Father send me and the glory be thine". {correct answer}
C. Sister said "Come ride our bikes and we'll go to the park".

{You can see how this could easily be adapted for any song that you are teaching.}

"once there was a snowman" {249}

This is just a little something fun for "Once There Was A Snowman". You start with just a big snowball. As you sing the song, the snow man gets "tall, tall, tall". Then he gets smaller as you sing "small, small, small". Cut three circles using poster board and white cardstock. Add the buttons, hat, scarf, eyes, carrot nose, and mouth. Laminate everything. Put a wooden paint stick on the back to hold the top two pieces of the snowman together. Then using fishing line and tape attach the top two pieces to the bottom piece.

skier steve...

Here is a "singing meter". The better they sing the more Skier Steve is able to go down the mountain. Steve has a heavy duty magnet on his back. Put him on the poster and then have another magnet behind the poster that helps the child move Steve down the poster.

I'm not an artist but I'm pretty good at drawing somthing that I see drawn. So I bought a cheapo book that I found on sale that is called "100 funny people to draw". It walks you through step by step on how to draw all of these funny people....that's where Steve came from!

remember the song hats...

This little suitcase full of hats is suppose to help the kids show you how much they remember... with enthusiasm.

Just collect lots of different hats and put them all in a suitcase. I had some around the house and then went to goodwill to pick up a couple of extra.

Last week I taught the children the first verse of "I Lived In Heaven". So at the beginning of singing time I pulled out the suitcase and explained that I would watch and see which class sings the best and shows me how well they remember the song we learned last week. They sang with tons of enthusiasm!

Then I picked one class that sang really great and choose two children to come up and each pick a hat because there were two teachers for that class. I gave all of the children a minute to look at the teachers and get a little laugh and then got their attention again and moved on to teaching them the next verse. I told them we would do it again next week so they were even more anxious to learn the new verse so their teacher would get to wear the hat next week.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

attention getters...

These are some ideas for getting the children's attention when they are getting restless or irreverent.

“1,2,3 Look at me”

“I see ______ eyes.”

“I see ______ eyes.”

“I see ______ eyes.”

and so on until you have their attention.

If you can hear me…

touch your ears.

touch your nose.

touch your shoulders.

touch you knees.

fold your arms.

Begin to sing an activity song such as “Sing A Song” (253), “Popcorn Popping”, “Roll Your Hands” (274)

Then sing a quiet song such as “Reverently Quietly” or “To Think About Jesus”

Monday, January 12, 2009

being a primary music leader...

I love, love, love being the primary music leader. Although, I must admit, it is kind of hard. It doesn't come totally natural to me. I feel like each week I have to really work and prepare for Sunday. I (try) to completely rely on the Lord for inspiration. Each week I just hope that He guides me. Otherwise, I know it won't work.
Most of all I really like being so immersed in the music everyday. We(my kiddos and I) listen to the primary songs all of the time! Not that we didn't listen to them before but's ALL the time! It brings a wonderful spirit into our home!
When I was asked to serve in this calling, I sat back and thought of what my goals were for this calling. And here is what I hope to do:
1) Teach the songs so that the children internalize them. I want them to be able to recall these songs throughout their lives to be able to help them feel the spirit.
2) There really isn't a number 2. That pretty much sums it up!