Thursday, November 27, 2008

Gratitude and Thanksgiving

Music: Children All Over the World (CS 16) and I am Glad for Many things (CS 151).

Attention Getting Activity: I set up a bowl of water, a 1/4 measuring cup, and a glass goblet (inside a plastic container) on the table. I read Psalms 23:5 and we discussed what it meant to have so many blessings that our cup would overflow. We each took turns pouring water from the bowl into the cup and naming something we were thankful for. We each went several times until the cup overflowed with our gratitude. The boys loved the water splashing over.

Lesson:Using the Children's Scripture Stories, we read the story of the 10 Lepers. We talked about how only one came back to say thank you. I asked how he thought Jesus felt when only one said thank you. Then we talked about how Jesus felt when someone did say thank you. We showed on our fingers how many did say thank you and how many did not.

Activity: I have a flannel board Thanksgiving set that we used to tell the story of the first Thanksgiving. You could use the internet to print out pictures of your own to tell the story or get a book from the library. (If you choose to do this lesson at a different time of year, skip this part altogether).

Game: We played a turkey hunt game using turkeys I printed on different pieces of colored construction paper. We picked up the turkeys and said something we were thankful for that was the same color as the turkey we picked up. If you do this at a time other than Thanksgiving, you could just hide pieces of colored construction paper and play the same way.

Art: We made Mayflower boats as seen below.

Snacks: Make turkey cupcakes.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Creation Day 7-The Sabbath Day is A Special Gift

"There Are 7 Days in a Week" (This is a song I sang with my kindergarten class each morning during circle time). I used word strips with the names of the days of the week written on them. Then we counted them together to make sure there were 7.

There are 7 Days, there are 7 days, there are 7 days in a week. There are 7 days, there are 7 days, there are 7 days in a week. Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday."

"Saturday" (CS 196)

"The Chapel Doors" (CS 156)

Lesson/Activity: We read Genesis 2:1-4 together.

Heavenly Father and Jesus spent 6 days making our beautiful world. What are some of the things they made for us? (We looked back in our creation books we made). On the last day, Heavenly Father gave us a very special present. It is a gift that we get to enjoy each week. Can you guess what that gift was? I pulled out a gift box that I had filled with the following things.

*A set of scriptures, several Gospel Art Kit pictures showing Appropriate Sabbath Day activities, (Sacrament, attending primary, visiting the sick), Scripture Story Flannel Board pieces, Children's Scripture Stories, envelopes and crayons (for writing letters), picture of family members that live close enough to visit on Sundays, Friend magazine, a whisk, (we like to make treats for neighbors on Sunday together) and the Children's Primary Songbook.

The gift Heavenly Father gave us was Sunday. We call it the Sabbath Day. On Sundays we get to rest from all of our work and do things that help us feel closer to Heavenly Father and our family. In this box I have some things that we can do on Sundays to help us feel closer to him.

I let the boys take turns pulling out one object out of the box at a time and we talked about how we used those things on Sunday. I really tried to focus on what a special day it was and all the things that we GET to do, and not on the things we don't choose to do.

Scripture Memorization: After we pulled out all the items and discussed them, we opened the set of scriptures from the box and read Exodus 20:8 "Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it Holy." We memorized this scripture together by repeating it several times.

Snack: Ice Cream Sundaes

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Creation Day 6- Animals

Music: We sang All Things Bright and Beautiful (CS 231), Old McDonald Had a Farm (We pulled out different animals to sing about with each verse)., and I Went to the Animal Fair.

Lesson: We read Genesis 1:24-30 in the Old Testament. We talked together about Heavenly Father making all of the animals and then about him making us.

Activity: We named as many animals as we could think of together. I brought all of the animals in the house into the living room. All stuffed animals, flannel board pieces, plastic animals, Fisher Price animals, and puppets. We played three different games with the animals.

Game 1: Guess Who I Am? : I placed an animal underneath two pillows. Then I described the animal using clues such as "I am gray. I like to eat cheese. I squeak." After a few times of guessing, my three year old was ready to give the clues and the rest of us guessed.

Game 2: Animal Train: We placed all of the animals in a long line around our living room and then named and counted them. We talked about how many different kinds of animals Heavenly Father had given us and how they help us.

Game 3: Animal Sort: We sorted the animals into different groups. We sorted by colors one time, size, and habitats. Then we sorted them all back into their "place" in our home.

Art: We made our page for our Creation book using foam animal stickers.

Snack: We simply ate animal crackers with milk.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Day 5-The Birds and the Fish

Opening Song: Birds in a Tree (CS 241)

Lesson: We read Genesis 1:20-23 in the Old Testament. We asked the boys to name animals that live in the water and animals that fly. We showed pictures of birds and fish from books we have.

Music: We sang songs together about birds and fish. We sang In the Leafy Treetops,(CS 240),
I'm a Little Fishy. and "The Goldfish Song" by the Laurie Berkner Band.

Activity: We played a a Go Fishing Game with a magnetic pole and magnetic fish. You can make your own by following the directions here.

Art: We made birdseed feeders to hang outside from pine cones, birdseed and peanut butter. This can be really messy, so I highly recommend paper plates, plastic table cloth, and parental assistance. Then we took them outside and let each boy choose where to hang his.

Snack: Make bird's nest snacks to eat.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Thanks and Giving Tree

As we focus on our blessings this month of Thanksgiving, our family is creating a Thanks and Giving Tree. Each night before bed time we each write one thing we are thankful for on a leaf and on the other side one thing that we did to help someone that day. We have a fun time coming up with our many blessings and recognizing the service performed by one another. This is our tree about mid-month. It should be completely full by Thanksgiving Day. We will take off all our leaves and read our blessings together that day.

Thanks to Chocolate on my Cranium for the idea. They have a print off of a tree worksheet so that each family member can make his own, instead of a big family tree, if you would like. This just worked better for my preschooler and toddler so they would have more room to write.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Day 4-Sun, Moon, and Stars

Opening Song: I Am Like A Star Shining Brightly (CS 163)

Lesson: We headed outside with a flashlight, blanket, and binoculars. Together we read the scriptural account of the creation of the sun, moon, and stars in Genesis 1:14-19. We looked at the stars and the moon with our binoculars.

Activity: With our flashlight as our light, we sat outside in the dark and sang songs and read stories about the sun, moon, and stars. We sang "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star," "I See the Moon," and "You Are My Sunshine." We read Goodnight Moon, Happy Birthday Moon, What the Sun Sees/What the Moon Sees, Wake Up Sun, and The Sun and Moon.

Snack: We came inside and ate Astronaut Ice Cream in honor of our outer space creations.

Craft: We made pretend telescopes together out of paper towel rolls. Paint the telescope, add star stickers, and have fun looking through it outside at the stars.

Art: For the 4th page in our book we glued down die cuts of a star, moon and sun.

Closing Song: Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam (CS 60)

Day 3-Plants and Trees

We headed to a local park with a beautiful, wooded nature trail and picnic area to hold our FHE on the creation of plants and trees. We had our lesson, snack, and activity there.

Opening Song: Little Purple Pansies (CS 244)

Lesson and Food: We ate a picnic dinner at the park. All of our foods were plants. (strawberries, grapes, crackers with bean hummus, carrots, popcorn, cucumbers). We read Genesis 1:9-13 as we sat together under the trees.

Then we listed all the plants we could think of together. Being outside and eating fruits and vegetables helped spark ideas.

Activity: We went on a nature hike together and collected plants and pieces of land (rocks, dirt,etc...) in plastic bags to use on our art project later at home.

Closing Song: Leaves are Falling All Around (CS 241)

Art: We came home and created the third page for our Creation Book. Using contact paper, the boys stuck their findings from the nature walk on the sticky side and I folded it over and glued it to their page in the book.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Water, Water!

Opening Song:
Give Said the Little Stream

Lesson: Give each family member a glass of water. Ask them who made the water. We read in Genesis 1:7-8 that on the Second day the water was divided and some was on the earth and some was in the clouds. We discussed why water is important and listed all the ways we use water. (bathe, play, drink, swim, cook, help our garden and animals, wash cars, clean, baptize, etc...)

Activity: We played outside in water! It happened to be warm enough to do so here. However if it had been too cold, I would have brought the water table in the kitchen or garage or used small dishpans to play in. Andrew decided to wash the car, since cleaning was something we talked about doing with water. The evening ended with a huge water fight between Daddy and Andrew.

Learning Activity Outside:
Simple Water Cycle Experiment
1. Give each child a cotton ball to hold. Tell them to pretend that they are holding a cloud.
2. Ask them how does the cloud feel: heavy or light, soft or hard.
3. Instruct the children to place the "cloud" (cotton ball) gently over the cold water. Explain that water that has evaporated has traveled up to the cloud and it is a lot colder up in the sky, so the vapor turns into water, and it is filling up the cloud. Ask: Can you see the "cloud" (cotton ball) filling up with the water.
4. Ask the children to gently pick up the "cloud" (cotton ball) from the pan. Ask: How does the "cloud" feel now? Light or heavy. Warm or cold? What is happening with the water? Yes, the water is dripping from the "cloud". Why? The cloud cannot hold all that water, is too, too, heavy. What do we call when water falls from the clouds because they are too heavy with water? Yes, you are right, rain! It is raining! And what happens to the water? Yes, it is coming right back into the pan, and the pan could be a stream, river, ocean or the ground.

Art Activity: (after we dried off and put on our jammies we did art). We made the second page in our book. We glued clouds (cotton balls) to the top of the paper and water (blue freezer wrap) to the bottom. Ryan went a little crazy with his clouds, and we finally had to cut him off. He loves to glue!

Dessert: We enjoyed blue jello (water) and whipped cream (clouds).
Closing Song: "Rain is Falling"

Let There Be Light

We are teaching the boys about the creation of the Earth. We are focusing on one day at a time, so the next seven weeks will be centered around those themes. Feel free to join us!

Lesson: I turned off all of the lights in our home for the lesson. I pulled out a flashlight and we read about Day One: The Creation of Night and Day in the Children's scriptures. We also read the story from the Bible together in Genesis 1: 1-5. After we had read it through one time from the bible, I gave everyone a flashlight. Each time I said the word "light," they got to turn on and off their flashlights. We read through it several times.

Song: We sang "This Little Light of Mine" together while we made our flashlights dance.

"This little light of mine,I'm gonna let it shine,
This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine,
This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine!"

(Ryan is using the flashlight as a microphone).

Scripture Memorization: Genesis 1:3 "And God asaid, Let there be blight: and there was light." For some reason the novelty of flashlights allowed us to accomplish a lot this evening and so we twirled our flashlights while we repeated this scripture over and over until we knew it by heart.

Art Activity: We are making a Creation book over the next 7 weeks. So tonight we did the first page. We gave each boy a piece of yellow and a piece of black paper. We glued them to our first page. It was Ryan's first experience with a glue stick and he loved it!

Activity: We played Flashlight Hide-N-Seek. Each parent took a boy and we took turns hiding in the dark house with our flashlights. Only the call to dessert to get them to stop. (Mommy and Daddy had fun, too).

Snack: Not very creative, but we ate chocolate pudding (night) and topped it with whipped cream (day).

Closing Song: We sang the chorus to "The Lord is My Light" .

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Good Samaritan

Opening Song: Kindness Begins With Me

Attention Getter: Give Each Family Member a Band-aid. Ask them to think of a time they were hurt. How did they feel? Who helped them? Let them put the Band-aid on the place that got hurt. (My kids love Band-aids). Tell them that you are going to tell a story about a man that was hurt and about the kind person who helped him.

Lesson: Read The Good Samaritan Story from the Children's Illustrated scriptures. (I chose to skip the part about them beating him up when telling the story to my little ones. I just said he was hurt). After I read the story we used Flannel Board Pieces to retell the story. (My mom had made some for us previously, but the link is to a set available to print online).

Activity: I had a larger image of the injured man that we laid on the flannel board. (just enlarge from the flannel board pieces or draw your own). We talked about how we can help our friends and family when they are hurt. We wanted to give the boys a chance to practice how to show compassion in different situations. We gave several examples of how to handle the situation if we hurt the person on accident (running into someone when playing chase), on purpose (pushing your brother), and when a friend falls and gets hurt. We walked through the appropriate behavior. After each example we let the boys place a band-aid on the hurt man to help him feel better.

Closing Song: Love One Another

Snack: We actually ate birthday cake in honor of two family members who live far away and share the same birthday. A themed suggestion would be heart shaped cookies.

Reality: This final picture is just to show that our FHEs are normal. By the end of the lesson, Ryan was finished and had laid down in the middle of the flannel board to let us know.