Activity Days - Ideas that focus on the Faith in God program


Manners Matter
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Talent Try it Night - Have slips of paper with different talents listed and they choose to act, do or draw. Send them home with a paper that listed all of them and have them try a different one each week. (see link below)
Physical Fitness night (see dev talents #8) - Have them rotate through different activities (jumprope, sit ups, push ups, pilates, shoot hoops, etc). Talk about individual and team activities (not all of our girls can afford dance, soccer teams...).
Book Share (see dev talents #6 for discussion) - Have each girl bring a favorite book and tell why she likes it.

Family Night (see lrn/lv gspl #8) - Arrange to go to the FHC with a parent (who has a familysearch account) and have them look up their family on puzilla, pedigree pie, rootsmapper and play geneapardy. Print out the free coloring/activity pages on lds.org for them to take home.
Putting Christ in Christmas - Share meaningful stories, poems, scriptures in between the girls taking turns playing or singing a non-commercial Christmas song. Dim the lights and bring in a rocker, small Christmas tree, led tealights.
Service Night (see srvng othrs #2) - Write letters to missionaries and grandparents, thank you notes to teachers/parents/bus driver...
Service Paper Chains - On strips of paper, have the girls write down different things they can do for people and who they'll do them for. Have them put them together to hang in their room and do one each day.
Random Act of Kindness Night - Get wrapped candies (ie starbursts) and put a few in baggies with notes they color and then leave on people's windshields in the church parking lot (assuming that's where you meet at the same time as the youth).  (the notes were 4x5 - you are a gem, you are loved, you are a gift - found on google).

Book of Mormon Night is pretty quick - We learned the 8th AofF (guess-a-letter/hangman), then I showed the girls Pres Monson's 3 minute gen conf talk. I then pulled out the Gospel Art picts and did a short overall review (I could tell some of it was totally new for some of them). We then ended by playing BofM bingo - blackout style since we had time.

Manners Night (Serving Others #6) - { was done in May for Mother's Day and I told the girls that moms like good manners ūüėä } We did some charades, played 'Miss Manners Says' and then put together manners jars to take home so they could practice different things every day. (got jars at dollar store)

Gratitude Night (was done in early Nov but good any time) -¬† The focus was on being thankful, grateful and by extension, having compassion. We read the account of the 10 lepers and talked about the importance of expressing thanks and showing gratitude. We then made a thankful/grateful yarn web (stood in a circle, said something they're thankful for and tossed a ball of yarn to someone else). We then ended by creating a ‚Äėsounds of gratitude‚Äô door hang (they wrote things they appreciate on slips of paper and attached them to a ring with bells hanging from it (dollar store) - took them home to hang on their doors and whenever heard bells, say quick thanks to Heavenly Father).

(will edit later to add - talent ideas sheet, manners idea, bom nght, gratitude night)

talents - activity days.pdf

Edited by Manners Matter
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When AD is cancelled for whatever reason, email the parents with a suggestion or two of what they can do at home (the FiG reqs that are easier at home - ie plan/prepare nutritious meal, visit a museum..., etc). This helps reinforce the fact that it's on the parents for their kid to earn the FiG award and you're just helping. : )

Edited by Manners Matter
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On ‚Äé1‚Äé/‚Äé9‚Äé/‚Äé2019 at 3:43 PM, Grunt said:

Thank you!  This is incredible!

You're welcome! I hope it helps. I've edited the above post to add the other ideas. One other thing - object lessons! They're a great way to get their attention and teach principles. They're also memorable. Check here: http://www.mormonshare.com/search-lds-object-lesson.php

Edited: The website changed and is now: https://noboringlessons.com

Edited by Manners Matter
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  • 4 weeks later...

Just organizing this is tough.  Snack sheets, schedules, class format, etc.  I'm not sure if this was never done, if it was lost, or if I'm just WAY over thinking this.  I don't feel prepared unless I'm organized and we're starting from scratch.  So far we have:

Class roster

Snack list

Faith in God year's schedule

Conducting sheets

We're trying to develop the activities for each night for the next 6 months, the "game" for the evening, and monthly themes.

What am I missing?

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There are many ways you can do AD.   Having a class roster just to know who's in the class is a good thing (but it's not like you need to mark attendance).

If a conducting sheet helps you, go for it.  If that's not your style (like it's not mine), that's ok too.  

Monthly themes are a cool option, but not life-and-death requirement.

6 month calendar: ok, not life-and-death requirement, but is MAJORLY helps your sanity to plan ahead.  It's just easier to brainstorm activities twice a year rather than go "shoot- we got to figure out what we're doing on in two days!" over and over again.  Now obviously the next 6 month calendar isn't always going to go like you planned, but at least having a plan helps.  

As for a "game" for every evening: I would say something fun to do every week is good, but it doesn't have to be a structured game.  Like one of our annual activities was weeding the yard of an elderly lady in the ward.  We would all meet at the lady's house, say an opening prayer, and then get weeding.  

 

You'll find your groove in what works best for you guys. 

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44 minutes ago, Grunt said:

What am I missing?

Popsicle sticks!  You gotta have popsicle sticks!  Or, actually, I think they're called tongue suppressors.

 

 

 

 

Ok, so I said that because right now I'm writing the Scouts' names on popsicle sticks with Sharpies and coloring one end of the stick red and the other green.  This is gonna be my conducting aid because I noticed that my Scouts volunteer other people to do prayer, scout oath, and scout law and wouldn't volunteer themselves.  So, I'm done with volunteering.  Your name is going to be picked out of the popsicle sticks in the soup can.  Green tips up - you're game for picking.  Red tips up - you've already been picked.  Easy peasy.

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The key is to keep it simple.
Activity Night was broken up into 3 segments:
~ While we waited for kids to show up - they either did something to get energy out (hokey-pokey, dance/freeze, etc) or we just chatted

~ Brief welcome, song of my choosing (went with the theme - but girls took turns leading), prayer

~ Short 'sharing time' style lesson (10-15 minutes unless good discussion is happening - scripture/AofF/object lesson...)

~ 15-20 minute activity/game that reinforces the principle and something that gets them out of their seats

~ quieter activity they do until time to go home

I know this doesn't add up to an hour but we were never able to start on time (that's just not going to happen here with the parents crazy commutes).

 

I didn't bother with conducting sheets.

I only did snacks twice and both were simple and on the healthy side (once because it went with the theme and was an activity; the other time was for Christmas).

I left the tracking to the parents as stated in the FinG booklet (pg 17-19 As children complete activities, they can track their progress by marking the chart on page 20 of this guidebook.). I would email the parents of the girls that were there giving a brief synopsis and what still needed to be done *at home* to pass it off.

^^ This also meant that I didn't bother with 'rewards/prizes' when they met the requirement (that's for the parents to do if they choose - "Parents and leaders should help the children understand that the joy of living the gospel is the most important reward." FinG booklet, pg 19)

I also didn't plan too far in advance (learned that lesson with a previous calling - was released out of the blue and the person who followed me wasn't the type to do what I had been planning). I also needed the freedom to do what worked best for me any given month so telling the parents the plan months in advance would put me in a corner which I wasn't going to do.

I also left birthdays to the Sunday teachers/primary presidency (we had some come so seldom, it would be too risky for a girl to feel left out even though her bday was 2 months ago but she hadn't been coming).

Oh, I would have the girls sign a note/card every few months to be sent to the inactives (I made sure to include meeting time, place).

 

There are a lot of ideas out there that people are doing/have done but that doesn't mean you need to do it as well. Just follow the good/better/best principle and don't worry about all the rest.

"But sometimes we take the beautiful lily of God’s truth and gild it with layer upon layer of man-made good ideas, programs, and expectations. Each one, by itself, might be helpful and appropriate for a certain time and circumstance, but when they are laid on top of each other, they can create a mountain of sediment that becomes so thick and heavy that we risk losing sight of that precious flower we once loved so dearly.

Therefore, as leaders we must strictly protect the Church and the gospel in its purity and plainness and avoid putting unnecessary burdens on our members.

And all of us, as members of the Church, we need to make a conscientious effort to devote our energy and time to the things that truly matter, while uplifting our fellowmen and building the kingdom of God." - Pres. Uchtdorf, General Conference Oct 2015

Edited by Manners Matter
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35 minutes ago, Manners Matter said:

The key is to keep it simple.

Not to take away from all the great things you shared, MM, but some leader just told me this today and made me grrrrr.

So, I thought I'd share this tidbit of my life just so I can get the grrr off my chest.

So today is Scouts den meeting and because our cub scouting program suck (everybody is dragging their feet waiting for Scouting to finally be gone), I ended up having to hold one Den meeting with all 3 dens - Wolves, Bears, and Webelos.  I'm the Bear Den Leader.  But before I whine about today... I'll whine about last week first.

Last week was our Pack Meeting which we've already planned the whole year's worth of Pack Meetings since the beginning of the year and February is Sports Night... but I show up 15 minutes before 7 and the Cubmaster did not show up, there's no activity planned, and I had to "wing" a Pack Meeting.  Only one other Den Leader showed up so we were left with the ball.  Good thing, I've been doing this for years now so I got all the materials I need for opening ceremony and my husband - the Scoutmaster who is doing the work of Scout Leader too because they don't show up - happened to be working with the 2 deacons we got so they could get all their merit badges and possibly qualify for eagle by the end of the year.  I was able to grab him real quick and he and the deacons came up with this modified kick ball game that they taught to the cubs.  The cubs came up with game rules, my husband and his den left and the cubs played their newly minted ballgame and had a blast!  Requirements checked.

So anyway... today... I'm planning for an obstacle course to get both Running with the Pack (Wolves) and Stronger, Faster, Higher (Webelos) requirements knocked out.  I got it all planned out and gathered materials and so I went to the Church at my lunchtime to set up and lo, and behold... the ward after us did not pick up after themselves last Sunday.  So the cultural hall is still littered with nursery toys all over the place and classroom chairs all over the other side.  There was just little old me so I gave up.  I called the other cub leaders help - nobody except for that one trusty Den Leader replied.  So once again, I recruit my husband and my 2 boys to drop what they're doing and help us.

And that's when I was told that I should "Keep it Simple".  An obstacle course to complete 2 different den requirements is not complicated.  Amazingly.  For the req's it checks.  What they mean by "Keep it Simple" is... just do easy, boring stuff, don't worry about meeting req's... just so you can say you did something.  That's not Keep it Simple.  THAT'S RENEGING ON YOUR CALLING.

Rant done.  I feel better now.

Edited by anatess2
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Sorry that's been happening, @anatess2. Too many members seem to misunderstand what 'keep it simple' means. If my kid came home with all sorts of 'fluff and stuff' but nothing added to their armor (or there was a blasé fare attitude as you describe), I'd be having some conversations with leaders about what they're spending their time preparing (or not as the case may be).

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