Thursday, July 7, 2011

Somewhere in West Jordan, Utah

Because I have been out of town, I was able to attend Primary in two separate wards in the past two weeks. Both were fabulous. Both were somewhere in West Jordan, Utah, and both had some great ideas I want to share with you. 

The ideas presented in this post are from the chorister who's name I didn't write down. She was fantastic! (If  it was YOU please forgive me and comment with your name so I can give you proper credit.) I will share what I learned from the second chorister, Jill Taylor, in my next post.

The first thing I noticed about our Unknown Chorister was how well organized she was, how well she used her time, and how she never missed a beat:

She asked the children if they knew what the Declaration of Independence was, and she explained it a little to them. Then she had a teacher come to the front and tell about the following: 

“That We May Be Redeemed” by Harold I. Hopkinson

Founding Fathers

"We know the signers of the sacred Declaration of Independence and the Founding Fathers, with George Washington at their head, have made appearance in holy places. Apostle Wilford Woodruff was president of the St. George Temple at the time of their appearance and testified that the founders of our republic declared this to him: 'We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized from it, but we remained true to it and were faithful to God.' (Journal of Discourses, 19:229.)
"Later, after he became President of the Church, President Woodruff declared that 'those men who laid the foundation of this American government and signed the Declaration of Independence were the best spirits the God of heaven could find on the face of the earth. They were choice spirits, not wicked men. General Washington and all the men who labored for the purpose were inspired of the Lord.' (Conference Report, April 1898, p. 89.)"

The Declaration of Independence

"The Declaration of Independence . . . is much more than a political document. It constitutes a spiritual manifesto—revelation, if you will—declaring not for this nation only, but for all nations, the source of man's rights. Nephi, a Book of Mormon prophet, foresaw over 2,300 years ago that this event would transpire. The colonies he saw would break with Great Britain and that 'the power of the Lord was with [the colonists],' that they 'were delivered by the power of God out of the hands of all other nations' (1 Nephi 13:16, 19).
"The Declaration of Independence was to set forth the moral justification of a rebellion against a long-recognized political tradition—the divine right of kings. At issue was the fundamental question of whether men's rights were God-given or whether these rights were to be dispensed by governments to their subjects. This document proclaimed that all men have certain inalienable rights. In other words, these rights came from God."
(I am not sure about the exact quotes she used, but it was very close to these articles.)
Then she had everyone sing, I love to See the Temple one time through. 
Next, she put up a flag representing the 13 original US colonies.  She explained that each color on the flag symbolized something, and she asked the children if they knew what they symbolized. She had prepared in advance three jars with a little vinegar water in them, and three spoons with a dab of food color on two of the spoons (one remained white, so no food color) and then covered the spoons with baking soda. To guess each color's meaning, she stirred the spoonful of baking soda into a jar of shallow vinegar water. It foamed all up and then revealed either red, clear (white), or blue. She explained the patriotic symbolism for each color,  and she had them sing each song after each color was revealed:
  • Red: Courage, Nephi's Courage
  • White: Liberty, Book of Mormon Stories (especially the 2nd verse)
  • Blue: Loyalty, I'm Trying to Be Like Jesus
To wrap it up she explained a little bit about how Francis Scott Key came to write the Star Spangled Banner, and then had the children use hymn books to sing it. 

She commented to me after that she had gotten many of her ideas for that day from I, for one, am extremely grateful to have a resource like Sugardoodle, as I know many of you are. We are truly blessed to live in this day and age of technology. So thanks to Melanie at Sugardoodle, and a big Hooray! to all the contributing choristers there, too!

Thank you, Unknown Chorister from West Jordan! It was so much fun to visit. You are awesome! The children in your primary love you and I can tell they look forward to your singing time each week. I can't wait to use your ideas!


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