Monday, March 30, 2020

27 Fun and Unique Holidays to Celebrate with your Kids in April

We have loved using our March holiday calendar during our time at home. It breaks up our week and gives us something to look forward to and celebrate.  To be honest the past few weeks have been hard at times and we are still figuring out our new normal. It has also been a wonderful time to slow down and spend time together and I am so grateful to have this extra time with my kids.  I knew I needed to make a holiday calendar for April-also my kids have been asking for it.  This month has so many fun holidays that we are excited to celebrate.  We don't celebrate all of them and the ones we do are often a small craft, treat, or game.  It's just a small thing but it makes me pause from the daily to-do list and just be present.

This month I found 27 fun holidays to include on our April Calendar (most I didn't know existed).  Pick a few or all and have fun :)

Download a copy of the calendar, print, and display.  After that have fun creating some special memories with your little ones.

I'll be posting ideas as I finalize my plans and also as we celebrate some of these holidays.  My hope is that this will be something fun for your family and a way to create some special memories.  I'd love to hear your ideas and see pictures of your celebrations! My Facebook page is a great place to share :)

Here are a few fun ideas we've done in the past that would work with some of these holidays.

For Easter: Match game

National Dandelion Day: Flower Stamping

World Penguin Day:

Holiday's came from here and here

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Come Follow Me: Preparing for General Conference (March 28-April 5th)

"Immerse yourself in the glorious light of the Restoration. As you do, general conference next April will be not only memorable; it will be unforgettable." 
-President Nelson

With General Conference next Sunday I decided to use this week to prepare for conference using the quote above as inspiration for our study and activities. This is from President Nelson's closing remarks last General Conference (found here) There are 5 days planned with the suggestion of watching one of the videos (found here), suggested scriptures, and an activity or two to go with the topic.  We are going to watch this movie (it's also on the church website but I can't get it to open) on Sunday and then start day 1 on Monday so we finish on Friday and are ready for Conference on Saturday.   I did not include specific clips because there are a few different options for some of the topics-pick the one that works best for your family :)

Here's what the schedule looks like.  I also included parts of President Nelson's talk that I plan to share with my family...I thought it may be useful to someone else :)
 Day 1-Story sequence.  There is also a black and white option included.  To use leave the page with the numbers as is.  Cut out the pictures and use them as you share the story of the first vision.  You can use cardstock and velcro or glue them to the board.

Day 2: Has 3 different game options.  You will need the 2 pages of cards for all three.
The first is an I spy game.  Hide the cards around the room and let your children find them.  Use the "I spy" mat to cross off as you find them.  As the cards are found use them to tell the story.
 Option #2 Print two sets of the cards on cardstock and use as a match game.
 Option #3-Bingo!

 Day 3-We are going to talk about some of the blessings of the priesthood and play a match game.  Print 2 on cardstock-if you do not have any you can glue it to some construction paper.
 Day 4-We are going to practice the 6th Article of Faith and then make cards for either the Bishop or our primary teachers.
 Day 5-Draw, paint, use play-dough, legos, blocks, etc to make your favorite temple.  I did include some pages that can be used if they are drawing or painting.  Even if they are building these pages are a great way to have them "plan" their build.  They also make great journal pages.

That's all I have for this week.  I did have a request for the videos I'm using and will link those below.  If you have any questions or trouble with the download please let me know :)

If you are looking for something else to study this week this is one of my favorite talks (found here)

 Click Here to Download the Free Printables

Video clips I'm planning on using
Day 1 First Vision
Day 5 Temple 

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Come Follow Me: Enos-Words of Mormon (March 23-29)

First I just want to know how all of you are doing?  It has been a crazy, unpredictable, and at time a little scary.   I hope you and your loved ones are doing well and are healthy. I have a few ideas to help you teach the next chapters/books this week.

We are going to watch one of the following video clips about enos
New Book of Mormon Videos here
Animated version here
Then we are going to talk about prayer.  We have done quite a few lessons on prayer and this time we are going to talk about making our prayers more meaningful by praying for specific things.  You can find more on this in the Ensign's Family Study Fun...this one is my idea I submitted :)

Next we are going to play a little game.  Pass out the paper below (or use a blank one) and a pencil to each family member.  Set a time for 1 minute.  Quickly write as many things as you can think of that you can thank or ask for during your prayers.  You can either share your anwers OR use them to play pictionary or charades.  Take turns picking something from your list and let your family guess what you are drawing or acting out.  Another option is to use these pages as a journal page-little ones can draw their answers.  Black and white options are included.

Next up is a match game for the younger members in your family.  I picked a few things that we pray about.  Once they find a match they can tell you if it is something we thank Heavenly Father for or ask him to bless.  Many can go in both categories.  *You will need to print two copies of this page preferably on cardstock or back with construction paper.
Ideas from the Friend:
Enos craft found here
Enos story and coloring page here

Another thing I wanted to talk about this week was being able to pray when we are scared.  My kids have been asking question and have some fears about things going on around us.  I went looking for some stories in the Friend and found some great ones.
prayers in the attic 

prayers at the market

elevator prayers & chicken coop
a prayer in the night
Just a prayer away
prayer in the storm I decided to focus on this one because it also shows that parents can be scared too.  I love the little girls example and how deciding to pray didn't just comfort her but also her dad.
I made some cute story cards to go along with this one that you can show as you tell the story.  *Print and cut.

For this activity you will print, cut, and hide the airplanes around the room.  Once the airplane is found have them fly it safely to the ground.  Read the phase and discuss a few things you may add to your prayers when you feel that way.

Finally we are going to make prayer rocks.

I can bless others when I listen to the Holy Ghost. (Words of Mormon 1:3–8)

I am going to share this cute story from the Friend.  It's about a little girl that listens to the promptings of the Holy Ghost and bless her family.  You can find it here

The we are going to read Word's of Mormon 1:3-8.  Then use the puppets below to tell the story of the lost 116 pages and how we are blessed because Mormon listened to the Holy Ghost.  (There is a great summary in the Individual and Family manual)
The primary manual suggests singing a song about the Holy ghost a few different ways like slow, loud, soft, etc.  When you sing it soft discuss how the Holy Ghost speaks to us in a soft voice.  I decided to use this song found here.  It may be a new one for will be for a few in my family.  I made some visuals to help remember/learn the words.  We are going to sing it one time through.

Then we will use our song dice and sing the last couple of lines from the 2nd verse in different ways.  When we land on the quiet we will talk about ways the Holy Ghost speaks to us.

Alright that is all I have for this week.  If you have any questions or trouble with the download please let me know!  Also if you have any questions about sharing these files with primary classes or family members please let me know-I've received a few emails about this and know there may be others with questions regarding this :)

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

First Day of Spring Activities

Tomorrow is the first day of spring and here are a couple of activities from my blog that we plan to do.  You can find these printables in a free download at the end of this post.

Roll a flower:  Just print the page and grab a dice.  You can do one for each player or just share the main page and use your own blank paper.  The first player will roll a dice.  If they get a 2 they will draw a flower pot.  Then then their turn is over.  If they already have rolled the number they do nothing and it moves to the next person.  Continue taking turns until someone has finished their flower.

Nature Scavenger hunt you can use this page and check off items as you see them.  Another fun thing I've done in the past was to give each of my kids a paper bag and let them gather different items from outside.  We brought them in and made a collage with their collections.  I think we are going to take a camera and take pictures of the items as we find them.  After we will download and print and make a collage.

Our final activity is to make graham cracker bird houses.  You can find my post for this here.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Come Follow Me:Jacob 5-7 (March 16-22)

Wow this has been quite the week.  I hope everyone is doing well.  We just found out our schools will be closed for 6 week and are figuring out what that will look like for us. As I was preparing this post I ran across this printable I made a while back and I thought it fit so perfectly. 
I mentioned this on facebook with meetings being canceled temporarily I would love to know what you need for your family in regards to lesson helps for Come Follow Me.  I have had such an overwhelming feeling of peace and gratitude knowing that we have been prepared to teach our families at home.  While I will miss being at church I know that this can be a very special time for our families to learn and grow together. For this week I pulled ideas from the individual and family manual as well as the primary manual.  

Here are some helps for studying chapter 5. The first is a match game for the symbols and the meaning (the wording came from one of the church manuals).  The second is a page for notes or to draw what is happening in the chapter.  I broke it down using the suggestion in the individual and family manual.  Also here are some great article from this month's Ensign here and here
This one is for the younger ones-It's very basic and is from the primary manual.  You can also use the two pages that say "master of the vineyard" and servants to help explain the meaning. Fold the page in half so they can only see the clip art side.  Ask who do you think this is in the story.  After they answer you can flip the page over to reveal the answer.
I normally use clipart for my lessons but I couldn't find any and I thought this was the perfect opportunity to use real pictures.  I plan to share these as we read through this chapter in hopes it will help them visualize the story a little easier.  I'm pretty sure my 6 year old doesn't know what a vineyard is and I don't think I knew what an olive tree looked like.  So I'm hoping this helps.  They are a full page but you can print them small like 2 or 4 to a page if you want to save on ink.  Also I'll add a pdf with just the pictures (turned the right way) in case you want to show them on your computer instead of printing. *Just added this!
 We are also going to talk about being a missionary and how we are helping the master of the vineyard.  We are going to sing the song below-I'll find the page number and I'm going to share some of the suggested talk by Elder Ballard.  I included the parts I'm going to share for convenience but as always I suggest sharing what you feel is best for your family.

I found  this cute article in the Friend where children share some ways they have been missionaries.  I have them on different cards and will hide them around the room.  After we find one we'll read it and see if it reminds them of a time they have been a missionary or if it helps them come up with something they can do.  I really loved the idea of giving them example because we often talk about being a missionary but we don't always know what that looks like.  It might seem a little intimidate when we tell them they can be a missionary right now but after this I'm hoping they will see that they are already doing these things!

You can find lots of missionary activities from other weeks here.  Here are a few samples

I haven't completely decided how I am going to use these cute fruit puppets (maybe).  If you have ideas please share :)  I'm think I am going to print and attach to Popsicle sticks. Then we are going to talk about how our actions (works) produce good or bad fruit.  I'll probably give them some good and bad choices and have them raise one or the other.  Does that make sense?

 In the improving our teaching box at the bottom it talks about memorizing a scripture.  This is one that I really loved and will share with my family. I'll encourage my older children to pick a scripture and work on memorizing it this week.

I also included some song cards

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Come Follow Me: Jacob 1-4 (March 9-15)

This week for Come Follow Me we are covering Jacob 1-4.  I have noticed such a difference in my own reading as I have slowed down and focused on the chapters for the week.  I have learned so much and this week I can honestly say I am thankful for the words of Jacob. I choose a couple of topics from the primary manual. All printables are free in the download at the end of this post.

 As I was reading through the individual and family manual the the words spiritual danger stood out to me and reminded me of a talk by talk by Boyd K Packard- Spiritual Crocodiles.  This inspired a few of these activities.  Jacob warned his people about a couple of dangerous traps and sins they were falling into just like our prophet and apostles warn of today.  Using the talk spiritual crocodiles we are going to talk about some of the things our prophet warns us about today.
*Someone let me know this talk was in the Friend a couple of years ago and sent me the link! You can find it here. 

First I have adorable puppets to help you tell the story.  You'll want to read through the talk a head of time and then summarize for your family or class.  This will vary greatly on age :)  I tried to find pictures to cover all of the different part.  To use: print (cardstock recommended), cut, and add to a Popsicle stick.

Another activities is to hide the crocodiles around the room.  Let your family go on a hunt to find them.  Once found write on each crocodile something the prophet warns us about.  I left lots of white space to make it easier to write on.  This would make a cute display for the week.  To step up this activity make binoculars our of paper towel rolls ahead of time. Your little ones will LOVE hunting for crocodiles using their binoculars.  Sometimes I just roll construction paper to create them and it works too.
 One last activity: I think a really important thing to point out is some dangers are easy to see like the lion.  You can see it coming and know its dangerous.  But there are other dangers that may not be so obvious or hidden like the crocodile.  This week I've been talking to my children a lot about the world presenting evil as good and thought this tied in so well.  Okay to play you are going to cut out the ponds and the animals.  Have everyone close their eyes and hide one animal behind each pond.  Then take turns trying to avoid the dangerous animals.  After talk about why it was difficult to pick.  Maybe bring up the guide in the story and how he warned about the dangers in the water and how it could have been so easy to miss.  Then talk about why we have a prophet and that he warns of of dangers that maybe we can see and already know about but also danger we may not be as aware of or thing its not something that we will ever need to worry about.  Again adjust the discussion to fit your family.  The page with the elephant and lion is just a fun way to sort the pictures after you find them.
 Next we are going to talk about sharing with others in need and how sharing helps us to be happy.  This might be a good time to share one of the humanitarian videos on the churches website found Here.
This first activity is a spin on the activity at the end of the lesson.  There is a cute spinner for the kids to make.  This page provides a space to draw or write some of the ways we can share.  (I did change toys for talents.  Toys can be combined with possessions.
These cards have the same words but can be used as discussion cards, for pictionary or charades.  Cut apart and think of something that fits in that category.

 Here's a story (found here) about David sharing crayons with his little sister and how he felt when he did.  After set out some crayons for everyone to share while they color the picture included. (this idea and story came from an old primary manual)
 I also included the story about Jesus feeding the 5,000.  It was a young boy that had the fish and bread and decided to share.
(this link has some question & story cards to go with this)

That is all for this week.  I hope you find something that will work for your family or primary class.  As always if you have and questions or trouble with the download please let me know.

Additional ideas

Jesus feeding the 5,000 here & here

Exercising your faith idea here

wise man and foolish man ideas here

Thank you cards here, here, and here