Thursday, October 21, 2010

Simple Teaching Method - Choosing Pictures

Using pictures from the GAK, the manual picture kits or your own picture file, select several pictures for each phrase of the song. Find more than one picture for each phrase, as this gives the children more pictures to choose from. Post the pictures around the edges of the chalkboard, leaving a large space in the middle. Ask the children to listen to the song and to decide which picture helps remind them of each phrase. After singing the entire song, sing the first phrase again and have a child choose a picture and move it to the blank space. Or the child can hold it while all the children sing that phrase and then post it. Repeat for each phrase and then sing the entire song together. Use these pictures in upcoming weeks to review the song.

You can find variations of this method explained in the Sharing Time Ideas in the March 2002, June 2005, and March 2008 issues of the Friend magazine. Because this method is simple and straightforward, “Choosing Pictures” combines easily with another simple method to add variety and keep the kids engaged with the song.

Because choristers use so many pictures, I've kept up a picture file for many years now. I have pictures from the old, old manuals as well as the new ones. I have many pictures that I have simply cut out from discarded church magazines. I am always the first in line for discards from the library or someone's basement. I also very much appreciate the church giving us access to the digital issues that can be found online at These digital issues are in a pdf format that I have downloaded onto my computer at home. When I need a picture to illustrate a certain principle or concept, I look through my picture file. If I don't find what I need there, I just page through the digital magazines until I see something that will work. Then I print that page and cut out the picture.

I laminate the pictures that I've printed and those that I've cut from the magazines so that they will hold up better. I keep the manual pictures in their original envelopes and GAK pictures in the original file box. I keep the cut pictures loose in a plastic box. When I want to find pictures, I simply scatter the loose ones on my bed and paw through them. ;o} It isn't a very organized method, but it works for me.

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