My Christmas gift to Jesus
(Friend  Dec 2002, ST suggestion # 4)

Have a Christmas gift-choosing time for singing time. The week before, have the children name some of their favorite Christmas songs, songs about the temple, or other favorite songs. On the back of nativity figures (see Primary Visual Aids Cutouts, Set 8) write the titles of the songs you will use.

Write one of the following directions on each of ten pieces of paper: Boys sing. Girls sing. Adults sing. Stand and sing. Sing a cappella. Hum or sing. Loud and soft. You lead the song. Sing all verses. Sing with actions.

Put each paper in its own gift box, bag, or other container. Place the cutouts on the chalkboard and the containers on a table. Tell the story of the Wise Men bringing gifts to Jesus (Matt. 2:1-11). Help the children understand that one gift we can give Him is the gift of song. "For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart" (D&C 25:12).

Invite a child to choose a nativity figure and read the song title on the back of it. Have another child open a container and have the Primary follow the directions for singing that song. The boys, girls, or adults could come to the front when it is their turn to sing. For "Hum or sing," choose two children. One represents hum; the other, sing. Have one face forward, the other face backward. Throughout the song, the two children turn in the opposite directions. The Primary hums or sings based on which child is facing them.

For "Loud and soft," have a child direct the volume by holding his or her arms out and placing his or her hands together to indicate soft, then moving them far apart for loud. If a child picks "You lead the song," teach the child the correct beat pattern (see CS, pp. 300-301) and help him or her for the first few measures. For "Sing with actions," have different groups of children try to come up with appropriate actions for different lines of the song. Have them teach the Primary their actions before everyone sings the entire song using the actions.

End with a song that brings reverence. While singing it, have a child walk from the front of the Primary room to the back, inviting each row to fold their arms as he or she walks past their row.