Category Archives: Music

(sniff sniff) Goodbye Song!

from Mr. Multicultural

Perhaps you, like me, much prefer the “Hello Song.” But there are times when you just gotta sing the “Goodbye Song” to a beloved friend or Primary leader. Try this version, to the same tune ((Children’s Songbook, 260):

Farewell, adios. See you later, alligator. We’re sad to see you go. NO!
Farewell, adios. See you later, alligator. We’re glad you came our way,
to share with us our Primary day and be our friend in a very special way.
Farewell, adios. See you later, alligator. We’re sad to see you go. NO!

For a fun variation on the “Hello Song,” see Hello Song in multiple languages made easy!


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“Russell was a Prophet” – from the FRIEND

Did you catch this gem in the January 2019 Friend magazine? Children in Greater Manchester, England, wrote their own verse about President Russell M. Nelson for the song “Follow the     Prophet.”

     Russell is a prophet, baptised at sixteen.

     His parents were less active;

     He was very keen.

     He became a doctor,

     Doctor of the heart.

     Building many temples,

     He has made a start.

The fact that this verse is published in the Friend magazine tells me that President Nelson saw it and must have approved it. Your children may enjoy singing the “Follow the Prophet” song from Adam to today!


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Ready for January singing time?

Starting January 6, 2019, Primary will consist of 5 minutes of opening exercises, plus 20 minutes of Singing Time and 20 minutes of classes, with 5 minutes in between. Leaders of larger Primaries may divide children into two groups and have one group in Primary classes while the other group is in singing time. Then the two groups would switch places, adjusting the times as needed. More details here: Preparing for January 2019: what does it mean for Primary?

Singing time will be music that supports the scriptures studied in class. This means that the music leader will be following the weekly lessons in Come Follow Me — For Primarylooking for songs that support the lesson.


Come, Follow Me,” Hymns, no. 116

A Child’s Prayer,” Children’s Songbook, 12–13

Jesus Once Was a Little Child,” Children’s Songbook, 55

Other songs that go with the monthly theme:

“Seek the Lord Early,” Children’s Songbook, 108

“Search, Ponder, and Pray,” Children’s Songbook, 109

“I’m Trying to Be Like Jesus,” Children’s Songbook, 78


Read these instructions from, including exciting ideas for adding variety and solid doctrinal learning while you sing and have fun.


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50 minute Primary coming – including Singing Time!

What a prophet! I’m thrilled to see what a 50-minute Primary will look like in January 2019. I’m even more thrilled to know that it will include Singing Time, no matter what!

The purpose of this shift to home-centered, church-supported instruction is to “greatly increase faith, spirituality, and deepen conversion to Heavenly Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” explained Elder Quentin L. Cook. And nothing does THAT like music! Primary music has staying power, way beyond Sunday, way beyond the Primary years.

I appreciate Elder David A. Bednar’s reminder to not “focus primarily upon the logistical aspects of what has been announced.” [He knows me so well.] “We must not allow procedural details to obscure the overarching spiritual reasons these changes now are being made.”

Does your music need some variety to add some bounce and staying power as you seek to lead children to Christ? Try these ideas:

And for a bonus story, in honor of my mother who recently passed away, here’s The Power of Music, for Children “From One to Ninety-two”

Whether church is two hours or three: music in Primary? YESS!



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Summer visitors made easy!

With summer in full swing, you may be receiving an influx of visiting children. Here’s a few ideas on how to seamlessly enfold them into your Primary:

Welcome, visitors!


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The Power of Music, for Children “From One to Ninety-two”

The following is a free chapter from the book that was born on this blog, Sunday Lessons and Activities for Kids.  Click here to learn more about how this blog became a book. Although this story is not about my own mother, I share it here in memory of my mother who passed away yesterday.


The low undertone of children’s chatter continued unabated as the woman stepped to the podium, punctuated by an occasional baby’s wail and parents’ “shh . . .”. Flipping her long brown hair over her shoulder with a practiced nod, she gripped the podium with both hands to steady herself, and began to speak.

“Many of you know my elderly mom has been getting weaker and weaker. We knew she couldn’t last much longer. Well, I got the call on Friday night that I’d better get to the hospital – it wouldn’t be long.” The woman’s soft dark eyes scanned the audience, as if she was gathering strength to continue.

“I rushed into her hospital room to see her lying there, perfectly still, her chest barely moving with each shallow breath. I took her hand and talked to her. She just kept lying there breathing in and out, but I know she heard me. I just know.”

The daughter took a deep breath and went on. “I said the things I needed for her to hear. When there was nothing left to say, I started singing. I wanted her to hear my voice, to know I was there.” The woman stopped to clear her throat, adjusted the microphone for no reason, and continued in a steady monotone.

“I started with ‘I am a Child of God,’ then sang through every Primary song I knew as the tunes and words came into my mind one by one. Then I started over with ‘I am a Child of God’ again. When I came to the last line, ‘to live with Him someday,” I thought ‘Someday? Maybe today.’ I kept singing softly until Mom slipped away, less than an hour after I arrived.”

She paused a moment to collect herself. “I know she’s at peace now, with God. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.” She grabbed a tissue and went back to her seat.

I thought of the blessings that come from simple Primary songs for children of all ages, throughout their lives. As an elderly child of God lay quietly that day, her own voice spent, her daughter became her voice, asking God to “lead me, guide me, walk beside me, help me find the way.” This time, the way was completely uncharted: the way to the other side, to “live with Him someday.” At that moment, this beloved Primary song reminded this elderly child of God that she was simply going home.


Check out the rest of the book, with ready-to-use ideas for channeling boundless energy, teaching about ideal families to children who live in other-than-ideal families, staffing challenges, bullying, children’s music for a lifetime, kids with special needs, building a celestial nursery, pint-sized service projects, and behavior management. And you’ll find some of the best children’s lesson enhancements and activities of all time. Available on and wherever LDS books are sold.




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Singing Time Improv!

Today’s guest author is Brenna, a mother of 3 and a piano teacher who loves  reading, hiking, and volleyball.  She writes: 

Our Primary chorister had a family emergency and wasn’t able to come on Sunday. Luckily, we have an amazing chorister Craig that was released about a year ago, but he was more than happy to fill in last minute. He always has fun ideas.

He taught the kids “Thanks to Our Father” (CS p. 20). It’s a short, two-line song with three simple verses. After the kids got the melody, then he asked four kids to come up front and tell him something that they are thankful for, and to be specific! He then had the whole Primary sing those words to the melody (and if possible, Craig would make them rhyme). For example: “Super Lego Racetrack”, “family that I love”, “pepperoni pizza”, “Jesus up above!”

Three kids said “family” and didn’t give any specifics, so that verse went: “Fa-a-a-a-a-mi-ly, Fa-a-a-a-a-mi-ly, Donuts on Saturday, Fa-a-a-a-a-mi-ly!”

The kids loved it and it was perfect for a last-minute singing time!

Over the summer, Craig did a similar game with the song “Oh, What Do You Do in the Summertime?” (CS p. 245). He taught them the first verse and then had a few kids come up to tell one thing they did in the summer. He tried to get them to rhyme and then we would sing them to the melody. It was a lot of fun.

These ideas work for last-minute fill-ins or when you have time to plan ahead!


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Primary Prelude music to increase sacrament meeting reverence!

Brilliant Primary president Lindsey writes about a recent ward council meeting: “The bishop asked how we could increase reverence in the chapel, and the discussion led us to this idea.”

Imagine Primary children singing songs they know well as prelude music for an occasional sacrament meeting. Just ask the families to arrive early (heroic, I know). Start with whomever you have, then as children arrive, they join the group singing on the stand.

You can be sure that folks will quiet their chatter to hear the children sing. They can’t help but feel the Spirit. In addition, the children will enjoy this opportunity to share their feelings about God through song, and it gives them additional practice to embed these gospel songs with powerful messages into their hearts.

For a related idea, see Stake Children’s choir made easy.

Sing on, children!


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Stake Children’s choir made easy

LDS Church News photo

Remember the children’s choir in General Conference? This photo is from the Saturday afternoon session of the 2004 General Conference. Primary children CAN rise to the occasion for YOUR stake conference! Nothing brings a sweeter spirit than children singing, and it gives them enormously valuable experience and confidence, strengthening their own testimonies as well.

See Children’s Choir, 60 strong for the how-to breakdown.

Download this letter to the parents, suitable for customizing for your stake: Children’s choir letter to parents and leaders

I love the words of the seldom-sung hymn, “In Our Lovely Deseret” (Hymns, 307):
Hark! Hark! Hark! ’tis children’s music—
Children’s voices, oh, how sweet,
When in innocence and love,
Like the angels up above,
They with happy hearts and cheerful faces meet. 
Sing on, sweet children.

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Primary Singing Olympics!

Here’s an easy idea to get the kids motivated to sing their very best! Here are our very official judges for the “Singing Olympics” during singing time. We split into 3 teams. Each team performed the song we’ve been learning all month (one team at a time), and we awarded a gold, silver, and bronze medal at the end.

All you need are a clipboard, pen and paper for each judge, and paper medals for each team or each child. Have fun with it!


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