Singing Time – learning a new song (with a bouncy die)

I am helping out with our Ward’s Singing Time until the end of January as the Music Leader has gone to Hawaii (lucky her!!!).  We were asked to do a Christmas musical item in Sacrament Meeting however only had 3 weeks to learn something.  I chose to do a Medley of ‘When Joseph Went To Bethlehem’ and ‘He Sent His Son’ (same tonality and they had already learned ‘He Sent His Son’ for the Presentation).  The task of learning ‘When Joseph…’ wasn’t too bad.  The Seniors picked it up no problems, but the Juniors were having trouble with the second verse.

I decided to do this game with them (both Jnrs and Snrs) and it worked wonders.

You will need:-

  1. One die
  2. One white board marker
  3. One white board
  4. An enthusiastic bunch of kids and leaders

How to play:-

  1. Write up the words of the song you’re going to sing beforehand on the white board.
  2. Sing the words through a couple of times with the kids once so they are familiar with the words (I played this game the Sunday before they had to sing it – they had already been learning it for 2 weeks prior).
  3. Ask a child to come up and roll a die.  I use a giant bouncy one, which adds to the fun.  They all want a turn of it.
  4. If they roll a 3, rub out every third word (or third word of the verse you are working on).  Roll a 6 – rub out ever 6th word etc.  The problem is if someone rolls a 1.  You would have to rub out EVERYTHING!  That’s also part of the fun.

I was so amazed at how focused the children were, and the adults in the room. I love getting the teachers involved, and as I had asked them also to sing up the front with the kids, they were determined to learn the words as well.

Of course, this isn’t limited to just Church, you could use this idea:-

  • in a classroom situation at school learning poetry
  • learning a new song on a staff (use notes instead of words – and rub out the notes instead)