Saturday, December 20, 2008

Stuffing Stockings

Thought this was super cute, we'll try it tomorrow.

Thank you, Sugardoodle:

Have a stocking filled with little tiny presents and a tag attached stating a gift that Heavenly Father and Jesus have given to us. Also have a white stocking for Jesus and when a child drew out a gift, they in turn had to write on a piece of paper something they could give Jesus for Christmas and try to do throughout the year, then they put it in the white stocking. Then the child that drew out the tiny gift, hid it and we did the hot and cold game while singing a song. Keep all the slips from that year still in Jesus' stocking and take them out the next year and see how the children did over the last year. Also passed slips out to all of them so the stocking is full of gifts for Jesus from the whole Primary.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Learning Names

Okay, I thought I'd throw this one out there too.

I was substituting at primary pianist (which is the best calling in the church, by the way) in the old ward and the chorister did the world's greatest name game. She sang "Here We are Together" and had each primary child sing their name during the "There's (name) and (name)" lines. You end up singing the "(name) and (name)" like a thousand times and the kids love it! I can hardly keep up, but they do really well.

To make it easier on the kids, I bring in a little hand puppet duck that we lovingly named "Mr. Quackers" then changed to "Brother Quackers" last Sunday. First I tell them that sometimes I get nervous singing up in front of them, so I bring a friend occasionally. I tell them it's not as intimidating if we sing our name to Mr. Quackers because he's very nice and cute. But if that's even scary for us we can just say our name when it's our turn. Even the shy kids seem to like it. Two sunbeams opted not to do it, but it worked just fine because I actually remembered their names!

I did this my first week to start to learn names months ago and last Sunday was a test to see how many I remembered. I did okay, but I've got the worst memory ever. How can I be so old at 23? I think my son's aged me several decades. Anyway... I hope to post a picture of Mr. Quackers just because he's so cute! Sometime after Thursday...

Snow Day

We all drew pictures of our favorite songs on some white recycled paper my husband was throwing away. Then we crumpled up our masterpieces into little balls and had a snowball fight! Okay, not actually a fight, but the activity turned out really well. In junior, each class stood up and aimed for my little snowball-catcher (a recycled giant can that had way too many peaches in it). Whomever made a shot or at least got the closest had their favorite song sung. It ended up being super fun, but still spiritual because some of the kids really love the classics like "I am a Child of God", "Armies of Helaman", "I Love to See the Temple", etc. Then of course we had to sing "Once There Was a Snowman" and the like.

I'm trying really hard to learn how to have lots of fun while keeping the reverence in primary. I think it's unrealistic for me to expect the kids to never have any wiggles, so I figure I can help them sing some really great music while enjoying themselves. A big thing that seems to help tame is to ask from the very first minute for their reverence and help in our fun singing time. In senior, I tend to have to even "threaten" (naughty word, I know) to take away the fun and do a less-fun activity in its place... But then if we ever have a super fun song or extra wiggly moment, we take a minute to calm down before we move on or maybe even change the rules to a song or something. If we sang "Head, Shoulders" all fast and crazy the last time, then we'll sing it one last time in the most calm and reverent way possible, ending in our chairs with our arms folded. That works, but they start to catch on after a while to my plan! Oh well, it works the first time at least!

Hope to post pictures later... It's finals week. Maybe I'll do it after Thursday!