Fun Ideas for Activities and Callings

Activity ideas you can use.

Visiting Teaching Handout For New Sisters

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I was recently the visiting teaching coordinator in a ward with an extensive number of sisters who were completely new to Relief Society and therefore visiting teaching. Many of these sisters were overwhelmed with the prospect of visiting teaching and avoided it. I made this handout as a simple guide for these sisters to help them understand that visiting teaching can be very simple and hopefully take away the guilt some sisters can feel about what they are able to do each month. I had some great feedback from new sisters as well as experienced sisters about the handout and I hope this helps you as well!

 

 

Visiting Teaching HandoutPDF

 

I was recently called as visiting teaching coordinator in my new ward, so I will have more visiting teaching posts to come!

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Making Paper Journals

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I found a tutorial on A Beautiful Mess, for making paper journals that is fast and incredibly easy to make. You can make them to any size and with any amount of paper inside that you want/need. There are a lot of uses for making these paper journals, they can be made well within the hour time constraint of a Young Women, Activity Day, Cub Scout or Relief Society meeting. What is so great about these is all of the putting together is done first with decorating after, meaning people do not go home with a halfway completed project.

Currently I am working with the Bear Den in our local Cub Scout pack, and for one of their requirements they need to keep a daily record of their activities for two weeks. (Bear Book Pg. 142, requirement 18c.) We put in 7 half sheets of paper to make for 13 spreads. This way the boys had a spread for each day they needed to write down their daily activities, except the 14th day, and they had one sheet on the back of the 13th day to journal. Making journals was really fun for the boys and they really got into decorating them with stickers and colored pencils and picking out paper, though they did need help punching through 8 pieces of paper, but all in all, we as leaders could sit back and let them be creative. There was a lot of talking and laughing from the boys, which they enjoyed as did we.

As the boys worked on these journals the leaders and parents had a meeting about planning scouts for the summer, this was a great activity for the boys to do while leaders and parents had a discussion. If we were to do this again, I think I would have had an older sibling of one of the boys be there to answer questions and help boys punch holes in paper while parents and leaders had a meeting. All in all it was a very successful activity and I think the boys are excited to write in their journals.

 

 

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Writing Journals

I recently became a Cub Scout Den Leader, and I was trying to think of an activity for the boys to do while they arrived and I found some ideas for writing prompts and decided I would put together a journal for each boy. Every week I put a new writing prompt in the journal for the boys to do for the first 10 minutes of scouts. The first pages look like:

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Other Ideas:

What do you want to be when you grow up and why?

If you could be any animal which one would you be and why?

If you could eat lunch with anyone who would it be and why?

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If you are interested in doing journals for scouts, activity days or home school you can find a lot of writing ideas at Playful Learning.

What I really like about this activity is that you can use it for just about any age group and it can be as simple or complicated as you want to make it. We will be doing several different kinds of writing prompts including the boys writing their own stories to drawing their favorite knots once they have passed off “Tying it Up!”

The boys have really responded well to writing in their journals and they think it is fun, though sometimes a bit silly. The writing prompts really get them thinking and smiling, and it helps to bring out their fun personalities!

I found the bear image from this link, I just googled “bears” and found it.

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Cub Scout Year Plan

The more I learn about the Cub Scout Program the more I am driven to organize myself because I can’t bear the thought of one of my boys not earning a badge because I was disorganized! So I planned out a year of activities and I sent home this letter to the parents of my scouts, so they know what we are working on during den meetings and encourage them to work with their sons on their own time.

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Dear Cub Scout Parents,
Thank you so much for letting your boys participate in Cub Scouts! They are awesome and fun boys and we enjoy working with them! We wanted to give you a little outline of what you can expect from Bear Cub Scouts this year. Your son will pass off the following requirements if he comes to each den meeting and does the (infrequently) assigned homework.

Bear Badge
-Ways We Worship
-What Makes America Special?
-Tall Tales
-Sharing Your World with Wildlife
-The Past is Exciting and Fun
-What’s Cooking?
-Family Fun
-Be Ready
-Information, Please
-Jot it Down
-Shavings and Chips
-Tying it All Up

Golden Arrow Point
-Building Muscles, requirements A, B & C
-Art, requirement A
-Collecting Things, requirement B
-Maps, requirements A & B
-Let’s Go Camping, requirements A, B & F

Belt Loops
-Astronomy
-Collecting
-Heritage
-Good Manners

If your son wants to work on additional requirements that pique his interest, please encourage him to do so. For every 10 additional requirements he passes off he will be able to receive a Silver Arrow Point. (Please sign his book on the “Akela’s OK for the Arrow Point Trail” line and write the accomplished requirement on the back page of his Bear Handbook.)

Each quarter your son will come home with a detailed schedule of what we will be working on during that three month period. If your son misses a den meeting you are responsible for helping him to complete the activity he missed. We will have a den meeting April 29th for parents and boys to attend and share summer travel plans so we can be more effective with our summer activity planning.

Thank you,

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Mother’s Day Dinner

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For Mother’s Day we decided to have a mother’s dinner. We spent one activity night planning the menu and entertainment. We also had them write a letter to their mom’s to give to them at the dinner. Our girls decided to make potato soup, salad, rolls and apple pie. The Sunday before the dinner I passed out the official invites to the party though I had already talked to almost every mom about it casually before that.

I had the mother’s drop girls off at 5pm with the mom’s arriving for dinner at 6:30pm. The girls peeled and cut potatoes and apples, washed and cut salad, made homemade croutons, diced peppers, stirred soup, and warmed up rolls. It was pretty crazy, but all the girls were willing to help even though most of them had never used a knife before, but don’t worry we made it out just fine with no cuts or accidents! We also had food ready to go about 20 minutes before the appointed time and the girl’s took that time to practice songs they would sing and put together a quick skit.

We moved my kitchen table out on the patio since the weather was pretty nice. The girls served their mom’s each course and sang a song while putting food and plates and bowls on the table. The moms really enjoyed not having to get out of their seats for anything and just getting to chat. With each course that was served I let the mom’s know which girls had worked on it, the girls loved working in the kitchen and making new things. Most of the girls were timid about preparing food at first but quickly dropped their reservations and got right in there to help.

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After dessert plates were cleared the girls gave their mom’s the letter they had written previously and a Toblerone mini’s chocolate. Following that the girl’s finally were calm enough to eat salad, rolls and potato soup and pie in the backyard while mom’s relaxed and talked some more. It was a very fun, successful activity, I had several of the mom’s say that they really enjoyed it and had a wonderful time talking with the other ladies.

You could use this activity to pass off a requirement in the girl’s Faith in God booklets, “preparing and serving a nutritious meal.” I figured that our meal wasn’t that nutritious so we didn’t pass it off but it gave the girls tons of confidence in the kitchen to hopefully now do it at home.

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FIG Family Home Evening Kits: The First Vision

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Recently we put together family home evening kits on the First Vision, helping to pass off teaching a family home evening on the first vision in the Gospel Living Section of their Faith in God booklets. It took a lot of looking and doing, but I found some blogs and lds.org pictures to use for these kits.

Each girl received a gallon sized bag with the FHE outline, a printed and laminated sacred grove and Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and Joseph talking to a preacher. Also in the gallon bag were pictures of Joseph Smith, a girl praying, and The Book of Mormon that needed cut out and colored. Also in the bag, a colored marker they were to use on the back of their images, each girl had a different color, that way we could keep each girl’s pictures straight while cutting, laminating and putting them in the kits.

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The pdf includes directions and black and white illustrations for the girls to color. I did a mix of illustrated and coloring images because of 2 reasons: 1- time, and 2- reverencing heavenly figures. We a have a couple girls who just throw color on images and I wanted Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ to remain heavenly.

FHE Outline and coloring pictures: FIG First Vision FHE Packet with coloring pictures and instructions. The instructions I got from this blog post, I did however change them slightly.

Colored pictures from lds.org:

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After the girls colored and cut out the pictures I had them number the backs to correspond with the written FHE outline.

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We then laminated the pictures and used some velcro dots to stick Heavenly Father and Jesus along with a praying Joseph Smith to the sacred grove.

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To help complete the FHE we included two bags of popcorn as the FHE treat! The girls had a wonderful time making these bags and learning more about the restoration.

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Scripture Reading Chart & Bookmarks

Our bishop has challenged us as a ward to read the entire Book of Mormon from January 1st-May 1st. So I took that challenge to the girls during our first activity of the year. We invited the sister missionaries to come to activity days to issue the girls a challenge to read and also talk about the importance of gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon at their age. I found a scripture reading chart here, (it wasn’t easy to find!) made a copy of it for each girl and challenged them to read the Book of Mormon with the goal of finishing by May 1st, but if they didn’t finish by May to keep going until they had finished it. What I love about this chart is that each leaf represents a chapter in each book and they can color in the leafs and books as they go along. For our activity we made bookmarks for them to use while reading!

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Bookmark Supplies:

-Felt

-Ribbon

-Felt Stickers (you can find these in the craft aisle of your local Super Walmart)

-Embroidery Floss

-Needles

-Sewing Scissors

We really let the girls use their imaginations, several of them ended up trying for quantity rather than quality, but we ended up with some awesome creations! The girls really loved this activity and asked that we do it again some time.

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Sewing Cards

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I found these adorable sewing cards on Homemade Charlotte and since most of our girls have the sewing bug, I thought these would be a great way for them to practice. You simply print out cards on card stock, have each girl poke holes with their needles, then thread needles and let them sew! The girls took all my extras home to do over the long weekend they had coming up. Just a warning that Ida Braids was the most popular card among our girls, you may want to bring a few more of those than the rest!

I talked a member of the primary presidency about displaying the girls’ completed cards on the primary bulletin board. She thought that was a fantastic idea and so I made this display.

This sewing activity falls under the Faith in God, Developing Talents section.

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A few samples of the girls’ work.

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Activity Day Leader Ideas: Activity Planning Sheet

I created a simple yet helpful Activity Planning Sheet, that has really helped me in my activity planning and brainstorming. I like to cover my bases, so to speak, and this sheet helps me do that from supplies to brainstorming to which Faith in God requirement we can pass off with our activity.

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Bead Necklaces

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I came across a very cute idea at The Idea Room, bead necklaces! So cute, so fun and with the distinct possibility of mess but with a time and mess-saving tip. The activity day girls were very excited to make these and they turned out awesome! These necklaces fell under the create your own section in Developing Talents.

Since we were dealing with layers of wet paint we broke this activity into two with painting beads taking up one activity day night, and the second we modge podged and strung them. The Idea Room’s step by step instructions are awesome, I did a few things different though since we weren’t completing this project in one sitting.

1. I reminded parents the Sunday before as well as the day of the activity for girls to wear clothes or aprons that they could get paint on. Kate (my assistant leader) and I both brought extra shirts and aprons for anyone who forgot to wear old clothes.

2. The wood beads can be pricey for 10 girls so we did 5 beads per necklace and they turned out great, they didn’t look sparse at all.  We also limited paint to 5 colors and ribbon colors to 3 which ended up perfect for our girls.

3. Acrylic paint STAINS so be sure to cover any tables with paper or plastic table cloths!

4. I definitely suggest bringing skewers for the girls or you will have a ridiculous amount of messy fingers on your hands. Helpful Tip: Use the skewers for any polka dots the girls may want to do. It makes it so much faster and consistent, not to mention much less frustrating for any perfectionists.

5. If I were to do this activity again I probably bring a small fan to dry the beads faster.

6. You will want to have some fray check and sewing scissors for the ribbon when you string them.

The girls had an absolute blast doing this activity. They talked and were so good to compliment each other on their designs. It’s great to see smiling faces!

 

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