Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Primary Program... Check.

Last week was our primary program in church. I am a primary teacher so I saw all the preparation that went into it. I like the primary program as much as everyone else, and I also think it is good to give the kids a chance to participate in sacrament meeting and get used to speaking in front of people.

But I couldn't help but notice the collective sigh of relief when it was all over. The music leader was noticeably giddy during singing time afterward, taking joy in singing primary songs that we haven't sang for a long time since we had to practice the program songs. The kids also seemed happier. I don't think I've ever seen them sing as well in primary this year. I think they enjoyed singing songs that were familiar to them. The spirit was strong.

Don't get me wrong, I like the songs that were written for the program, but most of them are not familiar to the kids and it takes a lot of time and effort to learn them. And there is a lot of time spent preparing in other ways. Does the primary program distract the primary leadership to some degree from what is truly important: the spiritual development of the kids?

I don't have the answers. And I respect and support the policy of the church to have a primary program. I just wonder if there is a different way we can implement this that would not feel like such a burden on those who are doing their best to serve the children.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm a counselor in a Primary Presidency, and I can understand what you're saying. In our Primary, other than learning the songs, we didn't really focus on the program until about two weeks before when we practiced for it. Our talks in our opening exercises, of course, followed the annual theme and the monthly themes, but we didn't related them specifically to the upcoming program.

But, as far as the music goes, I agree 100%. Thinking back over the past year, there were very few opportunites that our Chorister offered the children time to sing requested songs -- the time was almost entirely spent on the music for the program. The Primary Presidency should oversee the balance between working on songs for the program and fun songs that the kids really love to sing. In our case, although the subject did come up in a Pres. meeting, no action was taken. Hopefully this year, it will be different.