Monday, October 18, 2010

My Dear Readers....

Food Image Courtesy University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension

First off, I love people who make comments. I appreciate you taking the time to share thoughts and wish we could get together and do brunch, because really eggs are a miracle food.

Recently I was left a comment "Anonymous said...Week one: Treats in Primary?? You might want to check the Handbook on treats in Primary.. Our kids are sweet enough..we don't need to sugar them to death
October 17, 2010 10:07 PM"

I try not to be defensive, but at the same time the world of communication without communication leaves me in an awkard position. Perhaps if we were face to face it would have been said different?

I know the Primary handbook inside out. I know the policy: "Food should only be provided when it is included as part of a lesson or as a snack for the children in the nursery class. Be sure to consult with the parents of each child about any dietary restrictions that may be caused by conditions such as diabetes or allergies (see Church Handbook of Instructions, Book 2, 239)."

Key words, emphasis given: when it is included as part of a lesson. I've never once suggested to use food in a different way.

Hear me out.... I have posted at least 4 different ideas for each week, each month for the past 2 years. I have also posted different ideas for at least 10 songs, 4 different ideas each. That's at least 424 different ideas. Out of 424 different ideas, roughly 5 ideas have INCORPORATED food into the lesson. For a grand total of (.....drumroll please......) .01% involving food.

Do I think food can be used to enhance a lesson?
You betcha! So often attention and interest can be lost when we do the same thing each week. Food often attracts interest and focus and when used properly can aide teaching using a different medium.

Should we "sugar" our kids "to death"?
 Thank you Food Network star Jamie Oliver, NO!

I've added a new "sidebar text" of the food in primary policy because I want it clear that I adhere to it. I'm not one to bring in candy as rewards! I know the true reward of all we do is the love and peace Heavenly Father gives us when we are obedient and I ALWAYS teach this to the children I am responsible to.

Isa. 55: 1 "Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price."

* Update 10/20/2010: I am such a whiner. Thank you everyone for your kindness and thoughtful words!!! I don't know why I had such a moment of "sensitivity". Actually, I do. I think I had just watched Remember the Titans and was horribly emotional -thank you Denzel and your stellar acting skills/stunning good looks.

I really love the spiritual connection I feel with the Lord as I pray and ask to be a help in any way I can. I'm the first to tell you, I'm a moron. I make so many mistakes it's not even funny. Again, my apologies for being such a whiner. I'm not planning on stopping blogging, although in all reality I truly believe if we were to just get on our knees- God would provide for us and lessons would be given where the Holy Ghost abounds and truth is poured into the little souls of those around us.

21 comments :

Shanalee said...

I came across your blog for the first time today. I just want to say THANK YOU for all your wonderful ideas! Also, most of the lessons I remember from primary involved food in some way. :)

Anonymous said...

I look at your blog on a monthly basis. The reason I think your blog is different than others is because you follow the manual most closely than any other "idea blog". I appreciate your hard work and I hope that you continue to post helpful ideas regardless one silly comment. Thank you for your work and for your service.

Brittney said...

I agree with you! And I love, love, love your ideas - so keep 'em coming, even if they involve food :)

-Brittney
afprimarysingingtime.blogspot.com

sara said...

I love your blog and usually read it through my google reader and therefore don't often comment. :)

In our ward we always give a treat the day of the primary program as a "good job" to the kids. Other than that, for sharing time, I would say we have lesson-related snacks/treats no more than one other time per year.

Thanks for everything you do!

Tiffany said...

I don't comment often either, but i have to say there will always be people who feel they have to point out the negative in things but i'm here to tell you that you do an awesome job. I have been primary president for 2 1/2 years now and i have used your website countless times. I appreciate all the hard work and dedication you put in. People need to learn to keep rude comments to themselves. They do us no good.

Simone said...

Ofensive comments are always anonymous. I wonder why they are not as brave to identify themselves as they are to criticize. Anyway, you're so generous to respond to them.

Kate said...

I too, have been following your blog for a little while now. I was recently called into primary as the first counselor and really appreciate all of your work and creative ideas that keep inline with the manual. We have been discouraged to stray too far from the manual, and your blog is a great resource for those who can not conjure their own creativity... :)

It really has helped me so much. thank you again.

Henckel House said...

The Sunbeam manual has at least two lessons where it asks you to bring food for the lesson. (Usually fruit, but nonetheless, food). All things in moderation. Sometimes we need to remember that even snack-freeness should have certain limits. In my old ward, we would have rice crispy treats every year for the Sharing Time after the primary program. I think it would be great to actually incorporate the treats into a lesson.
This is a fabulous blog and I am so thankful for it. It is a blessing to me as well as many others. Thank you.

Chelsey said...

I love this blog! I always use it in addition to the Sharing Time outline provided. (I find those lessons usually do not take up enough time, and supplementing with your ideas each week has been the perfect combination). I have been teaching for a few years and I can specifically recall quite a few lessons that ask for the teacher to bring food, including one where the children were able to eat popcorn salted and unsalted, to help them understand the concept of "salt of the earth". I think food can be a great lesson tool, I mean think about it, we use a lot of our senses to learn; we hear Primary songs each week, we watch and listen to the speakers in Sacrament, we touch our arms together as we fold them reverently, I think taste and smell should definitely be used! :) Please don't let one comment get to you, you are doing a wonderful service for all of us working in Primary and I know I am so very thankful for you!

Julie/mom said...

Just remember, you are not going to please all the people all the time...just shake off the negative.

It is hard to put yourself and your most precious ideas out there. Thanks for being brave! Continue on!

Candice said...

Sofia- I was just called to primary and am so glad I remembered about your blog! What a great resource. Thanks for all the work you put into it. I remember those times in San Rafael when you sat at the piano, practically jumping out of your skin because one or the other of us were attempting to teach a sharing time lesson and the delivery was boring. :) I will always remember the advice you gave... along the lines of "if you engage the kids you will find the irreverence problem will all but disappear." True words! :) I will be back visiting often. Thanks!

6L's said...

you and your blog are amazing! love your prayerful dedication to the primary. please keep the fabulous helps coming!!

Anonymous said...

Love your blog, love your ideas. I think people tend to forget-you are not telling us we have to use food. they can choose for themselves whether they want to include food in their lessons or not. Dont even think about that comment again. You are doing a fabulous job. Keep up the good work-we less creative creatures appreciate it! I say if you dont like what the author says, quit reading!

And just so I can be clear-you are telling me that I should pass out 3 foot long jumbo size pixie sticks to the primary kids every week until they go into a sugar coma, right?

callie said...

I must say that I am new in the Primary presidency and am SO GRATEFUL for your wonderful ideas! FOOD OR NO FOOD!!! I am NOT the craftiest, cutsiest person ever and if I can take one of your wonderful lessons and use it - belive me, I am glad!!! My Sharing Times would be ever boring!!! So PLEASE, for MY sake, keep up the WONDERFUL work you do!!! (Yes, I'm being the teensiest bit selfish, but am ever grateful for your time!)

Mrs. KIR said...

You poor thing. You have given so much to so many of us!! I LOVE YOU and I don't even know you:) Sometimes we forget that people who are dong things for FREE for US should be PRAISED and never criticized. If a person does not agree with (or is uniformed as in this case) the person serving them, they simply do not have to use your FREE idea/service.

And since I have used several of your ideas and have never left a comment I have truly been one of the 9 lepers (you know the 9 who did not turn and thank the Savior) and so I say, "THANK YOU, THANK YOU!" I would not have survived Primary without you!

Des said...

I have been using your blog since I was put in the presidency a year ago and I have LOVED it! Thank you so much for sharing your ideas and as far as the anonymous comment- isn't one of the golden rules "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all?" I think if someone doesn't agree with an idea you have posted, then guess what folks- don't use the idea. No one is forcing you to use any of these ideas or use food. You should prepare your lesson according to the spirit and if you feel ok about using food to help get your point across- then so be it. Also, now that I am on my soapbox- we have a child with a disability in our primary and he needs snacks at regular intervals to help with his sensory disorder. So sometimes it is very valuable if we have the opportunity to tie a small (keyword: small) food item of sorts into our sharing times. This helps him to feel a part of the group instead of feeling like an outsider because he needs to be pulled aside and given a snack. Just do your best as a leader and follow the spirit. :)

Anonymous said...

um hello?!! we all know the way to kids hearts is through treats.
Some of the lessons in church I remember most had food involved...

Im a big treat hander outer- and kids love me :)

Julie Smart said...

I agree with ALL the comments made. You have such a wonderful gift, that for me, I am SOOOO grateful that you share. I gather soo many ideas from people that share their wonderful creative gifts for teaching the Lord's children the gospel. Thank you for the MANY hours that you put into preparing and posting that help those of us that struggle with teaching. You have helped boost my confidence in being in the Primary Presidency because I know I can gather such wonderful ideas from people like you!

Shannon said...

I count on your blog to help me prepare sharing time every 3 weeks! I lack resources other than the internet because I live in China and we are not allowed to order any church materials through the mail, nor can we buy them anywhere here because they don't exist in this country. So THANK YOU so much for all of your time and hard work that goes into your blog. It is truly a blessing to have it available. (Especially to me, who lacks resources and creativity. :) )

Anonymous said...

letter of the law, spirit of the law. I'm primary pres and I let my teachers decide what they want to do, you can tweat any snack to make it go along w/ the lesson, and I'm totally fine w/ that :)

lisa

Andrew said...

I think you are wonderful. I have only recently found your website, and I rely on your brilliant ideas and other peoples ideas for my primary sharing time lessons. And I do not think you should apologize at all, it looks like you are so dedicated and put a lot of effort into your site, and I am eternally grateful for people like you, who strive to make life a little easier and more pleasant. I am from the UK and serve in primary in Germany in an English speaking ward, and look I have found you. Now that makes me happy. Yours gratefully Pam Milnes