Friday, August 21, 2009

October 2009 LDS Primary Sharing Time Helps and Ideas

Week 1 "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" is a modern day revelation.

* Have a small megaphone (you can make a simple one out of paper). Ask a child to come up and say "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" is a modern day revelation." in the megaphone. Did everyone hear? Now ask someone to go in the hall by the drinking fountain. Ask the child again to say "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" is a modern day revelation." Did that child hear that was out by the drinking fountain? Could a person in Egypt hear what they said? What about my Yaya in Greece? There are many different ways to talk to each other, but the only perfect way of communication is the form our Father in Heaven uses.... REVELATION. He can talk to anyone, anywhere, anytime.

* Ask for a volunteer. Have about 20 blocks in front and a Family Proclamation. Tell the child, "Ok. Go ahead. Just go and do." The child will be confused. Repeat yourself, "Just go ahead and do it." When the child starts building something, say, "No. No. That's not it. Try again." Ask them if they know what they are supposed to do? Of course NOT! You haven't told them! In the Bible Dictionary it says, "Without revelation, all would be guesswork, darkness, and confusion." Then ask them to build a frame out of the blocks to put the Proclamation in.

* Write Old VS. Modern Revelation on the Family. Have 2 children come up at a time and a red paper circle for them to tap. Give a clue and have the children guess which category (old or modern) the revelation on the family comes under. Some clues could include:
- picture of Nephi and the words, "Having been born of goodly parents." (or for older children to be able to answer the category they first must say what scripture this refers to)
- picture of Gordon B. Hinkley and the words "We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children."
- this family loved each other and traveled over the sea in very small boats lighted by stones
- "Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness"
- “Children are an heritage of the Lord" Psalm 127:3 (This one is a trick one! It's BOTH ancient and modern revelation!!)

For younger children, time can be a hard concept. This topic can help to clarify the difference between old and now. Make sure to use the scriptures so they can physically see the scriptures mean OLD and display a picture of the apostles so they can visualize NOW/modern.

* Choose 10 items to represent 10 parts/quotes of the Family Proclamation. Put them under 10 different blankets. What was once hidden can be revealed! Have them choose a blanket and then try to guess what part of the Proclamation it represents. Have the quotes displayed for them to choose from. (Since not all younger children can read, read to them 2 quotes and have them choose the right quote from the one you read.) For example have a picture frame of your family, "The family is ordained of God." or a wedding veil "Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan."

********************** I wanted to include this quote (I know it's a little long, but well worth the read) from President Hinckley( “We Look to Christ,” Liahona, Jul 2002, 101–2) to inspire and uplift you. It is a beautiful quote and it ends with the importance of modern day revelation. ****** *********************************

" Like the polar star in the heavens, regardless of what the future holds, there stands the Redeemer of the world, the Son of God, certain and sure as the anchor of our immortal lives. He is the rock of our salvation, our strength, our comfort, the very focus of our faith.
In sunshine and in shadow we look to Him, and He is there to assure and smile upon us.
He is the central focus of our worship. He is the Son of the living God, the Firstborn of the Father, the Only Begotten in the flesh, who left the royal courts on high to be born as a mortal in the most humble of circumstances. Of the loneliness of His living He said, “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Matt. 8:20). He “went about doing good” (Acts 10:38).
He was a man of miracles. He reached out to those in distress. He healed the sick and raised the dead. Yet for all of the love He brought into the world, He was “despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: … he was despised,” and was esteemed not (Isa. 53:3).
We look upon His matchless life and say with the prophet Isaiah:
He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows. …
“… He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isa. 53:4–5).
When the great War in Heaven was fought, Lucifer, the son of the morning, came forth with a plan that was rejected. The Father of us all, with love for us, His children, offered a better plan under which we would have freedom to choose the course of our lives. His Firstborn Son, our Elder Brother, was the key to that plan. Man would have his agency, and with that agency would go accountability. Man would walk the ways of the world and sin and stumble. But the Son of God would take upon Himself flesh and offer Himself a sacrifice to atone for the sins of all men. Through unspeakable suffering He would become the great Redeemer, the Savior of all mankind.

With some small understanding of that incomparable gift, that marvelous gift of redemption, we bow in reverent love before Him.
As a Church we have critics, many of them. They say we do not believe in the traditional Christ of Christianity. There is some substance to what they say. Our faith, our knowledge is not based on ancient tradition, the creeds which came of a finite understanding and out of the almost infinite discussions of men trying to arrive at a definition of the risen Christ. Our faith, our knowledge comes of the witness of a prophet in this dispensation who saw before him the great God of the universe and His Beloved Son, the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ. They spoke to him. He spoke with Them. He testified openly, unequivocally, and unabashedly of that great vision. It was a vision of the Almighty and of the Redeemer of the world, glorious beyond our understanding but certain and unequivocating in the knowledge which it brought. It is out of that knowledge, rooted deep in the soil of modern revelation, that we, in the words of Nephi, “talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that [we and] our children may know to what source [we] may look for a remission of [our] sins” (2 Ne. 25:26)."

Week 2 "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" teaches me the importance of marriage.

* Bring in some peanut butter and jelly and bread. (PLEASE BE AWARE OF ANY ALLERGIES!) Some things in life just go together really well. Perfect together! Just like daddies and mommies! "We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God" ("The Family: A Proclamation to the World")

Another great quote to include, "One individual is complementary to the other. As Paul stated, ‘Neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord’ (1 Corinthians 11:11). Man and woman are His creations. Their duality is His design. Their complementary relationships and functions are fundamental to His purposes. One is incomplete without the other.” (Gordon B. Hinckley, “The Women in Our Lives,” Ensign, Nov. 2004,84)

* Bring in a puzzle. To complete the puzzle you have to match the pieces up. If 2 pieces don't match, then you can't complete the puzzle. Those pieces just don't fit together. Marriage is between a man and a woman, that is how God planned it. "The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife." ("The Family: A Proclamation to the World") If it hadn't been that way, you or I probably wouldn't be here today!

* "Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan."("The Family: A Proclamation to the World") Put 4 chairs in the front of the room. Ask 4 children to come up and join you in your "car". Ask them what you need to do to drive to church. After you buckle, adjust your mirrors... what comes next? How do you turn on the car? Can you do it without a key? No!! It's essential to have that key!! Just like marriage is essential to Heavenly Father's plan!!

* Have 3 couples come in. Couples who can share pictures from their temple weddings and talk about what they do to have happy marriages. Ask them if they have a copy of the proclamation hanging in their home?

* An idea from Sheila Wilson ("Sharing Time: My Family,” Friend, Feb 2004, 20):

"Briefly tell the children about Heavenly Father’s plan for us. Heavenly Father blessed us with families to help us return to live with Him. Give the children a copy of “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.” Tell the children that it contains the Lord’s teachings regarding the family. By following these teachings, we can strengthen and unify our families now and prepare to live as eternal families. As you read the first paragraph of the proclamation, have the children listen for what is at the center of His plan for His children (“The family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children”). Read together the first two lines of paragraph 7 (“The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan”). Help the children understand that “ordained of God” means Heavenly Father designed marriage and family not just as an earthly union, but one that will endure forever. Write the words from these sentences on pieces of paper, and cut out each word. On one side of the board, rearrange the words from paragraph 1. On the other side, rearrange the words from paragraph 7. Divide the children into two groups. Choose children to arrange the words in their correct order as their group repeats the sentences out loud. Scramble the words again, and see if they can do it without the groups repeating it. Encourage the children to keep their copies of the proclamation in their scriptures to use throughout the year. Suggest that they read the proclamation with their families in family home evening."

Week 3 "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" teaches my family how to be happy.

* Sing "A Happy Family" (CS pg.198a). What makes a happy family? LOVE!! An activity to follow is the ABC's of Love. Write A through Z on the blackboard and then have the children come up with ways/ideas to show love to your family starting with that letter of the alphabet. Check the proclamation too to see what fits where! (For example: Provide for family for P. Zip up little sister's coat for Z. Wash the dog for W! Don't forget pets are part of the family too!)

* "Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ." ("The Family: A Proclamation to the World") Make the hymn "Love at Home" (pg. 294) into a book (Take a plain piece of paper, type the first line of the song on the bottom, etc. Have a picture of Christ for the last page for them to glue in on "Oh there's one who smiles on high, when there's love at home") where children can draw pictures to illustrate the words. For older children, they can write down times or examples from their own life that remind them of the words. (For example, "there is joy in every sound, when there's love at home... reminds me of rocking my children in the middle of the night. Their cries humbled me and even though I was tired, I never felt anything other than the privilege of being their mother and rocking them) Encourage the children to save their thoughts and put the book in their journals.

* D&C 6:32-37 "Verily, verily, I say unto you, as I said unto my disciples, where two or three are gathered together in my name, as touching one thing, behold, there will I be in the midst of them—even so am I in the midst of you. Fear not to do good, my sons, for whatsoever ye sow, that shall ye also reap; therefore, if ye sow good ye shall also reap good for your reward. Therefore, fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail. Behold, I do not condemn you; go your ways and sin no more; perform with soberness the work which I have commanded you. Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not. Behold the wounds which pierced my side, and also the prints of the nails in my hands and feet; be faithful, keep my commandments, and ye shall inherit the kingdom of heaven. Amen."

The proclamation states, "Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work and wholesome recreational activities." Divide into groups and give them one of these principles to act out. They are acting as a family and can choose whatever situation they like to demonstrate their principle. When we do these good things, Christ is in our midst... what greater happiness can we have than that?

* Moroni 9: 6 "And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor diligently; for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God."

Divide into groups or pairs and fill out job applications! (Little children can draw a picture of the family member while older children write down thoughts)

Job Description: Be a productive member of a happy family! Conquer the enemy of all righteousness through happy homes!
Job Title: Mother, Father, Brother, Sister, Aunt... etc. (Have one member of family written for each group or pair of children)
Job requirements: What does this person need to do to help the family be happy?
Job pay: (What blessings will the person receive?)
According to the Family Proclamation: (Have the children write anything they can find in the proclamation that applies to this family member)

* "The divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave." ("The Family: A Proclamation to the World") Draw a road on the board with lane markers. Have a car with a family inside. After about 10 lane markers have a sign that says end of the road (have a little grave marker), but have the road continue to the celestial kingdom. Have the children answer questions, sing songs or read scriptures having to do with eternal life and families to move the car one lane marker at a time to the goal. Death is not the end! Have a picture of the resurrected Savior displayed.

Week 4 "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" teaches my family the importance of work.

* Lazy Lawanda: Have a drawing of a child (Lazy Lawanda) on posterboard. Have removable pictures of items like a TV remote control, a bag of popcorn, headphones, slippers... etc. Then have some pictures of more "work" friendly items like a mop, plate of cookies (service by baking), gardening hat...etc. Have them questions, read scriptures and songs about work attached to these. Let the children choose the work picture they like, do what it says on back and switch it out for one of the lazy items. Remind them things are fine in moderation but what will really count in the end? The 2 hours we spent watching a movie or the 5 minutes we spent helping/serving by sweeping?

* Service Crowns: King Mosiah says in Mosiah 2:14, 16-19
" And even I, myself, have labored with mine own hands that I might serve you, and that ye should not be laden with taxes, and that there should nothing come upon you which was grievous to be borne—and of all these things which I have spoken, ye yourselves are witnesses this day. Behold, I say unto you that because I said unto you that I had spent my days in your service, I do not desire to boast, for I have only been in the service of God. And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God. Behold, ye have called me your king; and if I, whom ye call your king, do labor to serve you, then ought not ye to labor to serve one another? And behold also, if I, whom ye call your king, who has spent his days in your service, and yet has been in the service of God, do merit any thanks from you, O how you ought to thank your heavenly King!

Divide into groups or pairs (teachers will need to help and possibly write for the younger children!). Make a list of 50 things you can do to "labor and serve" your fellow beings! It can be things to do for your family or for the world- after all, we are all brothers and sisters! Turn in your list to get crowns to decorate. End with the following:

"When all is said and done, when all of history is examined, when the deepest depths of the human mind have been explored, nothing is so wonderful, so majestic, so tremendous as this act of grace when the Son of the Almighty, the Prince of His Father’s royal household, He who had once spoken as Jehovah, He who had condescended to come to earth as a babe born in Bethlehem, gave His life in ignominy and pain so that all of the sons and daughters of God of all generations of time, every one of whom must die, might walk again and live eternally. He did for us what none of us could do for ourselves. " (President Hinkley “The Atoning Sacrifice: Latter-day Prophets Testify,” Liahona, Dec 2001, 8)

* Role Reversals: "Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness... to teach them to love and serve one another..." (The Family: A Proclamation to the World) Bring simple dress up clothes. Have different situations for children to act out as parents. Have adults as the children. Examples of situations could be: Your child Brenda is not cleaning her room, what can you teach her? or Timmy is 15 and old enough for a job, what can you teach him about saving for a mission or about tithing?

* "Art-WORK gallery" Display pictures of the creation. Pictures of space, the earth, bodies, animals... have the children walk through like they would in a museum. Have them talk about the pictures or share thoughts. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ our brother went to a lot of WORK for us to create such beautiful things. Now have the children make a piece of art-WORK to show something they can do to follow our Perfect Family's example! And please, don't just throw them some crayons and a piece of paper. Have a variety of art tools for them to use. Have cut out frames to glue to their picture... make it special!


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for all the time and effort you spend in sharing your ideas with everyone! I have used many of your ideas and I am very grateful for them. Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Thanks a bunch, these are great.
Where can I find the original quote by pres. hinkley? The polar star one... I love it and need a copy!

Sofia's Primary Ideas said...

Thank-YOU sisters for being wonderful teachers!

The quote comes from “We Look to Christ,” Liahona, Jul 2002, 101–2.

Have a wonderful day!!

Anonymous said...

We've never met, but I just want to say that I so appreciate you and all the effort you go through to post these ideas. I live in England, and I know my Primary benefits from your ideas. You really touch many people all over the world. Thank you, thank you, for your inspiration, creativity, and spirituality! I so appreciate you!!!

"It's for fun..." said...

thank you SO much! you have sparked ideas in me and make me want to be a better primary leader. thank you so much for all of your time, effort, and love you share.

Jill said...

I am so relieved to find these good ideas of yours for Sharing Time! Thank you so much for doing this.

Crazy About Cakes said...

What a great site! I am always looking for good sharing time ideas. Thanks so much for all you do.

Michelle said...

I love these suggestions. I also want to thank you for putting so much time and spiritual effort into these ideas. They have helped me tremendously in my calling!

Jennifer G. Borup said...

I love your ideas. Thank you so much. Just a note about throwing a paper and crayons to the kids, when you have a large primary, IE 150 to 300, sometimes that is all that you can do for an art project in sharing time. We should keep in mind that our families still come first and we need to be prudent with our resources and time. A hand drawn picture by a child is a beautiful thing even if it is just paper and crayons.

Sofia's Primary Ideas said...

Sister Anonymous - God bless the motherland! Hooray for England and hooray for you! Thank you so much for your kind words.

Sister It's For Fun - I love you. Anyone that loves fun is a soul mate of mine!

Sister Jill- I'm relieved for you too! I used to get calls on the morning of primary saying, you need to teach! It was nice to have a little data base to pull from on those short 20 minutes before church! :) Thanks for your kindness!

Sister Lynette- I'm crazy about cakes too. And I've got the thighs to prove it. :) Thanks for the comment!!

Sister Borup- Thanks for the comment! It inspires me for a new post!!

Sofia's Primary Ideas said...

Sister Michelle- You are wonderful!! I'm just happy to know that there are children being taught by you, because you teach by the spirit!

Anne Marie said...

Thank you, thank you for the multitude of great ideas here!!! I really appreciate all the time and thought you put into your blog.
Love, your Texan sister in the gospel

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your ideas. Our Primary Presidency asked last minute if my class could present the Sharing Time next week... I had no idea what to do, but this blog has been a huge help!! I'll definately be back next time we present Sharing Time.

Anonymous said...

You have a wonderful website. I visit it whenever I need to be inspired. Thanks for all your hard work!

Petersburg, Alaska

Tera Maxwell said...

I appreciate your sharing ideas. I was newly called to the Primary Presidency, and sometimes, a new calling can be a bit daunting. What a relief to have some fun and easy ideas for sharing time! I am grateful for this resource you provide.

steph said...

Thank you so much for all the time you put into this. I know it benefits so many around the world! I am so sorry for the loss of your little boy. My heart sank when I read about it. My prayers are with you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the Lazy Lawanda Idea!! You saved me!! I got called right before church to do sharing time so this was a life saver! I think it was my best sharing time yet. We changed it around a little bit though we had a volunteer come up and we dressed her like Lazy Lawanda and then switched all the bad stuff for good stuff, the kids loved it!