It’s that time of year again! Time for primary to get ready for the primary presentation!
My calling is as the first counsellor in Primary, but because I serve in a small branch we don’t have enough people in attendance to fill all of the callings, so I also teach singing time. I’ve put together a singing time review program that I’ve successfully used before in a previous ward. So if you’re looking for ideas I’ve linked the program below that you can download and share. It is a lot of fun to do and also fun for the children to participate.
The program is quite detailed and takes up a full 40 minutes so on the day that we do this there is no sharing time, just combined Junior and Senior singing time. It’s enough to have the children sit in their regular rows as they do for Opening/Closing exercises. No seating rearrangements are necessary.
The purpose of this activity is to have a great time with the kids, figure out which parts of which songs need some further finessing, and reward them for being fantastic!
It is a game show type activity where the children have to sing well and participate in a variety of smaller activities to earn enough points to win their prize of popcorn at the end of the day. Members of the ward are asked to participate as judges to judge according to specific criteria they are each given.
What we have done in the past is take the popcorn makers to the primary room and popped the kernels just before primary. This is deliberate so that the kids smell it all and it gives them great incentive to sing their best. Just make sure you don’t do this on a fast Sunday!
Why did I choose popcorn to be the starring factor? A couple of simple reasons.
- Popcorn shapes are easy to cut out freehand. You’ll see where that’s needed in the program.
- Popcorn is an easy treat to make at the chapel! And as I said earlier, the smell makes for a great incentive.
You will need some time to read through and really let it sink in so that you can be appropriately prepared for the day.
There are several pages prepared for you. Some are instructions and some will need to be handed to the appropriate people before Primary begins. Make sure everybody knows their part. I’ve left them in Word format so that you can modify as necessary. I used this program when my ward had about 30 kids but my current branch has only 11 regular attending children, so I’ll be making adjustments too.
Side note: my friend in Cedar City, UT, recently sent me a picture of her ward’s primary kids. It looked like there were 100 children! Whaaaaaat!?! Incontheivable!
Singing time review activity 2015 – This contains a complete overview of the activity and lists all roles and materials needed.
Host – Instructions for yourself or whoever may host
Judges – Print, cut and hand out to the judges. I also cut out many score cards shaped like popcorn.
Pianist – Print and give to the pianist. It contains all of the info they’ll need. If you change anything on one sheet then you’ll likely need to update that same info on the Pianist’s sheet.
Because it’s 40 minutes long, I have a break somewhere in the middle to let the kids get their wriggles out. We sing ‘Give, said the little stream’ with a twist.
Give, said the little stream – my version
I got this idea from another blog about five years ago so I can’t correctly attribute it because I just don’t remember. However I have modified it slightly.
This is what we do:
Each row of children will need an empty chair at the end of it. When they sing a word that starts with the letter ‘S’ they all move across one seat. When they sing it again they move back. And so on until the end of the song.
When they sing the word ‘give’ they will stand up. When they sing it again they will sit down. And so on until the end of the song.
So they might be sitting when it’s time to move across or they might be standing. You can teach them just the standing and sitting part, and then the moving across part, and combine when they’re ready. Then you get faster and faster! It’s heaps of fun, the kids end up all over the place, and everybody ends up out of breath!
You can do these actions with any song that repeats the same words several times. Eg: Jesus wants me for a sunbeam or Sing a song (this one would be so much fun to sing in a round and also have the kids stand up and sit down on the word ‘sing’).
I really hope I’ve remembered to add everything necessary here. If you find a mistake please let me know immediately so I can correct it before leading others down the wrong path.
If you use this activity then I’d LOVE to hear about it! If you have questions feel free to email me.