Thoughts: I love the idea of the children having a part in the writing of their own lines for the program. I also hate having chaos and disorganization. So I had a dilemma on my hands to try to figure out how to do the program and have the children play a major role, and keep my sanity while writing it and preparing it.
This is really basic, but I thought I would share since it took me a whole year to finally come up with a sustainable model for planning and it transfers from year to year quite well. I should add that my primary is about 70 children, so it will need some adaptation for larger or smaller groups.
#1 -I take the Sharing Time outline and divide up the 12 months and the songs. I try to make 12 groups of children. These do not have to be according to age or class, I just find it helpful to have a certain number of children in each group for one month’s theme. I have found it helpful to divide classes into different groups for behavior issues if that works better.
So it looks something like this
Jan- Theme, Group A
Feb- Theme, Group B
March- Theme, Group C
And so forth.
#2- Then according to the number of children in each group I divide up that month’s themes from the outline and create prompts for each child to write. This is just an example!
Example: January “Agency is a Gift to Choose for Ourselves”
Say 5 children:
- What does it mean to have a choice and a consequence (think of the stick)
- Why was it important that you chose to come to Earth?
- I have chosen to follow Jesus by….
- Jesus created the Earth for me and you
- I have chosen to use my agency when…..
3. I do this during sharing time one week. I explain it to the children the week before and PREP the teachers that this will be happening. Doing it during sharing time makes it very productive and possible to get most of the children’s responses in one day.
4. I have the small children (Sunbeams) do a group scripture or line together, and the CTR5 classes do their lines in quickly one after another.
Example: Teacher or a well spoken fearless child: I can follow Jesus and Choose the Right by: being kind, other children follow without need for introduction to the topic.
Organizing: After you have the majority of the prompts type them up and place into assigned groups. Then I format the program roughly as follows
Short Into; Normally an older child or one who likes to speak in public
January group A
And so on to December:
The Children love that they get to write their lines. I try to leave them as raw as possible. But sometimes I do have to alter them for slight flow issues, but I do try to leave them as true to form as possible. The kids really are amazing when they get an opportunity to publicly share their knowledge of the gospel. It really does prove to be a spiritual experience for all involved.