Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sunbeams and Nursery

I was reading on another sister's blog about her 36 sunbeams. I can relate-we have 32 (if they are all there). They have been a huge group in nursery. Quite overwhelming to the leaders and finding enough people to call and get in there. When the nursery book came out in 2008 I was told that they no longer wanted me to go into nursery. That music time would be done entirely by the nursery leaders. I had been calls a few weeks prior and had gone in once or twice at this point. I was relieved that I no longer had to think of how to spend my time in there (it was a stressful thing to add to my new calling). When the year ended and starting in January we had a large group of Sunbeams come in I felt the same stress trying to get my new little Sunbeams to sing. They just didn't. I kept comforting myself with- 'at least they are looking at me and I have their attention', this was because all they did was stare up at me. I struggled all year to get them to sing for me and just near the end of the year I was beginning to make some progress. After having a conversation with the Primary Pres about how I use to go into nursery when I was first call she mentions that the new nursery leader would like it if I spent a few minutes each week with the kids. I'm feeling much more comfortable with my calling and this wasn't as overwhelming to think about. Before going in I decided that I was going to sing mostly songs from the Children's Songbook with them and maybe only one secular song each week. I was also determined that we'd end each Singing time in nursery with singing 'I Am a Child of God'. It was back in August that I started going in. It was chaotic at first, but over time it become a 'little' less so (it never stops being chaotic). We sing the chorus to 'Follow the Prophet', 'Jesus wants me for a Sunbeam', and end with 'I Am a Child of God' every week. With a few other songs: 'Popcorn Popping', 'Once there was a snowman', 'Ring Around the Rosy'. I didn't realize what an impact on all these Sunbeams I had been making until last Sunday when they came into Primary for the first time. We sang 'I Am a Child of God' for the opening song and EVERY Sunbeam was singing. They were awesome. This week and last week they have been so good for me (and that is saying a lot considering how many there are). They are trying so hard and are trying to sing. I really think that all the difference has been made from the time I spent each Sunday in nursery. They know me and they know that when I am there its time to sing. I encourage all you singing leaders to spend a few Sunday's each month popping into nursery for a few songs. I know that it has made a difference in our Sunbeam's transition and I believe it will make a difference for your Sunbeams too. Another idea is to spend a few minutes during the Sunbeam's class time popping into their classes. This idea was proposed to me last year and I only did it a few times. Sometimes the Sunbeam classes have a lot of time left over and their teachers are really grateful for reverent things to fill the remainder of the time. This could be a perfect time to teach them some of the songs from last year, or give them a bit of specialized attention on one of the songs from this year. With my Sunbeams last year we worked on singing 'Jesus Wants Me For a Sunbeam' without jumping up. Sunbeams are GREAT!!


rial & lisa solomon said...

That is so cool! I love being able to see it when my actions are able to make a difference.

Ellen said...

Way cool. As a nursery leader, I love having the primary chorister come in to do the singing time. Then we can keep the kids in their seats while someone else is doing the singing. I have also found the kids like songs with hand motions. I was in a ward where they would sing 'The Wise Man and the Foolish Man' and 'Book of Mormon Stories'.

Unknown said...

Why didn't I ever think about going to the Sunbeam classrooms? What a brilliant idea!!! They hardly ever sing the songs that they weren't singing in nursery so it would be wonderful to sing songs with them, without the other primary children around. They really might enjoy that a lot. Thanks!!!! Next week, I won't be whispering behind the piano during sharing time, I'm going to the Sunbeam classes. THANK YOU!!!