Sunday, September 26, 2010

Teaching the Valiant 8/9 class: part singing

This week we had Naaman and Elisha.  So we wrote our own verse to Follow the Prophet:

Naaman was a leper, wanted to be clean.
Went unto the prophet, but would not be seen.
Elisha the prophet told him to obey,
"Wash in Jordan seven times, and you'll be clean today!"

Okay, it is harder than it looks.  Here were my practice ones:

Elijah the prophet, sent to cause a drought
Israel would know their God without a doubt
Prophet of the Lord or Prophet of Baal?
They knew the true prophet when rain began to fall.

Joseph was a young boy, but he was confused.
Reading in the scriptures, he knew just what to do.
If we want the truth, all we need to do is pray!
That's what Joseph learned in the Sacred Grove that day.

Abinadi the prophet, testified of truth
Though they tried to take him, he would not be moved.
Through his testimony, Alma saw the light.
He and the good people fled into the night.

I also learned that surprises should probably wait until the end of the lesson (the glow-in-the-dark bracelets, though a hit, also were incredibly distracting).  They were a big hit (thanks, Thells!), but oh heavens.  Though I am pretty sure half of the primary thinks I'm really cool now, so that is a plus.

I also got my primary program CD.  I feel silly in Primary half the time because I am half a second behind as I have no idea what most of the words are.  It has been playing on a loop in my car since yesterday's church.  If I never get Follow the Prophet out of my head, it is my own darn fault!

I'll introduce the boys next week as we won't have class.

P.S.  You should try to write one yourself in the comments.  There are a ton of prophets that haven't even been touched upon.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Teaching the Valiant 8/9 class: part sharing time

This week I didn't have to teach (Yay!).  At the same time, I always feel a little awkward interjecting during the lesson here and there--but I did make sure everyone who wanted to participate got to (I feel like you can see more in among them).

I am still working on the boys, but I have the girls won over.  In fact, this week's sharing time was kind of crazy.

Here are my girls:

  • M is a little bit of a know-it-all, but she is eager to learn.  As smart as she is, you can tell she really likes stories of beautiful women--and why not? She is gorgeous! I am a little worried that she may equate beauty with power and intelligence.  She is the one whose favorite story was David and Bathsheba. . . 
  • L is the second oldest of a big family and smart but not a show off. She is very what you see is what you get.  She and I trade books (I bring her one a week from a large bag of them, and she brings me a few).
  • F is a fairy princess, all pink and blond, she loves a shiny, gauzy white dress, and looks like she stepped out of a fairy story.  She is one of the youngest, and so she is more nervous in class.  She also struggles the most with reading out loud.
  • H is quiet and book smart.  She is going to be a writer--writing down all her observations.  She is more comfortable with adults than kids, she waits until the very end so she can walk down to primary with her teachers.  I can tell she is a little lonely.
  • K is fun and playful. Quiet, with the most gorgeous head of long red hair imaginable.  A little bit of a tomboy with a mischievousness streak, she has been the hardest to get to know, but I was almost more excited when I won her approval last week.
  • E is another one of our youngest, which makes her nervous in class.  A little bit sarcastic and snarky, Miss E likes to be contrary, but she is also extremely clingy and likes me a lot.  She has a hard time settling down, and likes to get into mischief when possible.

I walk in a little late to sharing time.

"I wanna sit by you!"

"I want to sit by her!"

"Can I sit by you?"

I haven't been fought over as a seat partner in years.  I slide in between E and F, knowing they are the youngest and the rest will be okay.  We are a big class, so we are already pushing the boundaries of the row. K is out this week, so there are only 5 of the girls, but the boys are easily settled around Sister B, so I figure they are fine.

Little E suctions herself to my side with a little "I'm cold!" whine and I am immediately reminded of church next to Karita.  I hold her hand on the other side of her body so she won't be too nestled next to my cleavage.  Little F who skipped last week to go to her mom's class (one class younger), but who I made sure to say, "We missed you!" to last week, snuggles in on the other side. Her mom eyes her incredulously, and delightedly asks, "Do you like your teacher?"

Poor H gets back from the bathroom and sits by herself on the far side of our row (alone again, sigh).  I ask her to sit by me when some of the others are volunteering during singing time and get her a seat on the row behind us, but she is still isolated and it makes me kind of sad.  Out of everyone, I was more of an H.  Though L and I have many similarities, too.

Anyway, halfway through, I reach my hand back to wave at H, and she grabs my hand.  So here I am, one child attached to one side, another carbuncled on the other, my hand stretching way behind to a third, and I look over to my co-teacher with wide eyes.  She is just taking it all in.

"I'm not sure how this happened. . . " I mouth to her.

"It's really cute!" is her semi-stunned response.

F chooses that moment to pipe up and say, "We should have a sleepover!"

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Teaching the Valiant 8/9 class: part bribery

Sunday, September 12th will be burned into my brain.  It is the day I won over all the boys.  The girls are still more attached to me, but the boys were completely sold. Why? Bribery.  

They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.  And they are right--even if those men are only 8, 9, or 10.  Elijah and the Priesthood was the lesson.  The Lord punishes the wicked by causing a drought, and Elijah asks a widow woman for a cake.  And so I brought cream puffs.  

"Wait, did you make these yourself???" was the incredulous question.

"Sister R is a very good baker," my co-teacher responded. 

"Can you be my mom? She never bakes us stuff like this!"

At that moment, I hung my head in shame.  His mom is amazing.  What is more? She is the Bishop's wife.  Heaven forgive me!  But thank you, Heavenly Father, for getting little T to like me.  Because that is the first moment he has shown actual acceptance of me as his teacher or friend.  Mostly I get indifference from that one.

They have a few weeks of being very reverent in sharing time and remembering the topic of one talk in General Conference, and they get treats again.  We'll see if they can make it.  

Either way, there was some new respect for me--if only for my cream puff skills.  

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