Prophet and Apostles General Conference Poster – With April 2016 Talk Topics

Apr 09

Prophet and Apostles General Conference Poster – With April 2016 Talk Topics

In his April 2010 General Conference address, Elder Neil L. Andersen said, “We hold in our arms the rising generation. They come to this earth with important responsibilities and great spiritual capacities. We cannot be casual in how we prepare them. Our challenge as parents and teachers is not to create a spiritual core in their souls but rather to fan the flame of their spiritual core already aglow with the fire of their premortal faith” (Ensign, May 2010). Here is the link to the entire talk, which I really love. Elder Andersen’s words encourage me to do all that I can to nourish the souls of my children. One way I can do this is to make the teachings of our Prophet and Apostles readily available and visible in our home. We have a 16 x 20 chart on our wall that has photos of the Prophet and Apostles with a place where we record the theme of each talk from the most recent General Conference. As a family, we sit down and briefly discuss each talk from the Prophet and Apostles and decide what stands out the most to us, or what we need to focus on. We type key ideas from each talk, print them on white cardstock, cut them out, and tape them in the spaces provided under each picture. Here is a PDF sheet of the topics typed up in the size for the poster that you can download.  Here is the same page in Word format, so you can edit it. I love to see the smiling faces of these great men remind me throughout my day the important lessons they taught me. My children know how critical it is for us to follow their counsel. Sometimes I do a “pop quiz” and ask who gave a talk on a certain topic. My 8-year-old has fun seeing how quickly he can remember who gave each talk and point to their picture. You can print this chart as a photo print and place it in a picture frame behind glass. You can tape on the printed talk topics or write on the glass with dry erase marker or with a Sharpie.  (Sharpie can be...

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“Using the Book of Mormon to Teach Your Child to Read” – Special Offer!

Apr 02

“Using the Book of Mormon to Teach Your Child to Read” – Special Offer!

Only $29.99  FOR THIS BOOK!? Yes, a printed copy. I don’t believe we’ve ever offered so much for so little. This truly is one of those things that EVERYONE needs to have in their home, whether for children, grandchildren, or sharing with friends and neighbors. What a treasure for your home! If you don’t know much about Dr. Grant Von Harrison’s original “Teach Your Child to Read Using the Book of Mormon”, you’ll want to find out more about it on our website. This is a limited print run of our Focus Group Edition of this book.  Supplies are extremely limited. Here’s the link to Jan Harrison Hyde’s class that she taught about her Father’s book at the March 2016 Latter-day Learning...

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LDS General Conference Countdown Poster & Quotes

Mar 28

LDS General Conference Countdown Poster & Quotes

I made my first “Conference Countdown” poster over seventeen years ago.   We still use this idea twice a year when we prepare for LDS General Conference. We begin eight days before General Conference, so it is a Friday to Friday activity.  You can start today and easily catch up on the days you have missed. The purpose of “Conference Countdown” poster and accompanying quotes is to help prepare the hearts and minds of you and your family to be open to receive counsel and inspiration during General Conference.  An added bonus is that it adds some extra excitement and anticipation for General Conference. My boys love any type of countdown calendar.  We read one quote each day in the morning during family devotional.  You could read it before your family scripture study, at night, or even in your car.   I like to read it in the morning and discuss it during dinner. Reading and discussing the quote each day helps remind us that General Conference is coming up and focuses our minds and hearts on getting ready to receive counsel and inspiration from our church leaders. I will walk you through the steps to make your own “Conference Countdown” poster.  I have included all of the files for you to print. Supplies needed:  5 pieces of coordinating color cardstock or paper to print the pockets and poster title on. 4 pieces of white or light colored cardstock to print quotes on. 1 piece of white cardstock to print the Prophet & Apsotles 4 x 6 card. 1 piece of foamboard.  (Most dollar stores carry this.) Clear tape, scissors and a glue stick. I like to laminate all of the paper that I print on after I cut it out.  This is not necessary.   Here’s how to make your own: Print out the “Conference Countdown” poster header on 8.5 x 11 paper, cut in half, laminate, and glue on the top your foamboard. Print out the 4 x 6 chart of the current Prophets and Apostles next to the poster title.  My friend Heather Price Smith has one that I like that you can download for free here. Cut, laminate and tape this on the top of your...

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6 Vocabulary Games & Activities for Children

Feb 23

6 Vocabulary Games & Activities for Children

Acquiring language is a difficult task that can cause frustration or emotions of defeat. Enliven the learning experience with some useful vocabulary games that will provide context for the words and engage the learner. The attachment of emotion — like, amusement, anger, intrigue or surprise — will help create a deeper learning connection. Games are also beneficial because they include audible elements. The ear is an important tool that assists in memory-building, so it is necessary the student practices the words aloud. Here are six games for your students, which will expand their language comprehension and help them gain a better grasp on vocabulary. Word Puzzle Create a word puzzle on BusyTeacher.org for your students. A word search will provide the students with a fun, mystery-solving game. A word search is valuable for vocabulary enhancement, as the student repeats the word they’re searching for in their head. Repetition is a valuable learning tool, which cements terms into the memory, especially in regard to language. Before you begin the word search, make sure you read the entire list of words aloud, so the students know the correct pronunciation. Analogies Analogies help kids connect the dots between terms. The recognition of similarities and differences provides an enhanced context for the word, which will create multiple tethers for the memory. It is also a way you can expand a student’s vocabulary, through the introduction of terms that are either synonyms or antonyms of words they already know. The Analogy Game at LearningGamesforKids.com will help the student build a foundation of analogies and expand their vocabulary. Compound Words Compound words will help students learn two terms at once. It will also help them understand the idea of compound words, so they may utilize this knowledge when they encounter compounds that aren’t part of their vocabulary. The compound word game, Scrapy and Slice, on the PBS Kids website has the player identify and break apart compound words. It also throws in non-compound words as a trick. The game is fun and silly, which will keep the student engaged and entertained. Simple List Divide your students into teams and have them compose a list of words within a certain amount of time. Once time is...

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4 Math & Science Lessons That Are Perfect for Homeschoolers

Feb 04

4 Math & Science Lessons That Are Perfect for Homeschoolers

Because homeschoolers are not confined to class schedules and times the way traditional students in public and private schools are, there is more time to extend math and science lessons and make them more engaging and fun. If you’re looking for some math and science lessons that are perfect for homeschoolers, you’ve come to the right place. Here are some of my favorite, fun math and science lessons, and I think they’ll be a great fit for your kids. Two Math Lessons That Are Perfect for Homeschoolers  Egg Carton Addition Egg Carton Addition is the perfect activity for one or two early elementary homeschoolers. If you have one student, he will need an adult helper. If you have two students, they can play together. You will need an empty, clean egg carton, two marbles (or other egg section tokens), a marker, two pieces of scratch paper, pencils, and a bowl of dry beans. If you have a student who is doing well with addition, leave the egg carton intact, but if you have a student just beginning addition, cut the carton in half. Number each section, 1-6 or 1-12. Place the two marbles in the egg carton. Each player will take turns shaking the carton, writing the addition problem on his paper using the numbers in which the marbles landed, and completing the problem. The player with the highest sum after each player has taken a turn wins and takes a bean from the bowl. If a player gives an incorrect answer, he must return a bean to the bowl. In the event of a tie, both players take a bean from the bowl. Play until a player gets a predetermined number of beans. Figure Me Out! Homeschoolers love to create projects just as much as traditional students, and it’s nice to decorate the section of the home that is used for school in the same manner that teachers decorate their classrooms. Figure Me Out! is a math lesson that incorporates various mathematical operations, as the student creates a poster about herself with equations representing various aspects of her life. For example, she may decide to use multiplication to represent her age of 10 as 2×5. For this math...

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Music to Uplift and Inspire – Jupiter Theme

Jan 23

Music to Uplift and Inspire – Jupiter Theme

Kayson Brown and the American Heritage sponsored Lyceum Philharmonic Orchestra have released another moving music video.  My kids LOVE to listen to Lyceum Orchestra’s music, and consider it a special treat to watch their equally inspiring videos.  Jupiter’s Theme, can be found on their CD, “The Master.” A couple months ago I wrote a blog post and shared a link to their video for “I Need Thee Every Hour”, which is also found on, “The Master.” Kayson Brown, the Lyceum Philharmonic director, has a deep desire to lift others by sharing beautiful music.  He is creating a series of videos featuring the Lyceum Orchestra students, hoping to reach out to teens and others who need a lift.  I have the privilege of seeing Kayson a few times a week at the American Heritage School campus.  He is a genuinely good soul with an infectious smile.  He has a heart of gold and truly desires to bless the lives of others through music. Kayson told me that, “Our hope is that this video can be a refuge for our viewers during the storms of life. There’s something about this music that envelopes the senses and hides us from worries and cares. It’s an emotional escape that shelters and replenishes humanity. If you are struggling right now just know that music and Jesus Christ will always be there for you. When other sources fail these two never will.” Kayson also shared with me the backstory for this new video.  He said, “We hiked a symphony orchestra, timpani and all, down into a meadow on the backside of Mount Timpanogos during the peak of Fall colors. The camera crew recorded sunrise to sunset.  Bruce Wilson flew his state of the art drone over half of the mountain range looking for imagery to match the musical depth of Holst’s Thaxted theme.” “The Philharmonic performed the entire Planets by Holst not too long ago. Few musical moments can compete with the satisfying experience of performing that section of Jupiter.  The Philharmonic was putting together an album of sacred music at the time so I arranged this setting of the tune for that purpose. It combines the two worlds where the Philharmonic is most active...

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Resolve Today to Avoid the Path of Regret

Jan 10

Resolve Today to Avoid the Path of Regret

We all have regrets. It is said that the greatest fear is the fear of loss—the lost deal, the one that got away, that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Businesses use the fear of loss to encourage consumers to purchase things they probably wouldn’t have otherwise. The pain of regret follows loss, but it is most painful when it involves the truly important things in life—the things that are seen not by the eyes, but only by the heart, as Elder Uchtdorf explains. It is also said that when one door closes, another opens. Life is a continuous series of doors opening and closing, and at the opening of every door we have the opportunity to reflect, renew, recommit, and resolve to do things a little differently in order to avoid regret. For many, the New Year provides such an opportunity to take pause. As a family, this year we watched excerpts from Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s General Conference address from October 2012. This was a great way to set the tone. After watching the video, we took 30 minutes to independently consider and record a few ideas in connection to four questions that we feel are important (Resolve.pdf). As with most great traditions, food plays an important role. The “FHE” treat to this devotional is always going out to a favorite Thai restaurants seen in the picture above. Over dinner, each took turns sharing ideas and feelings, although somewhat disjointed between bites. This has come to be a cherished tradition in our family and sets the tone for each new year. Thankfully, because of a loving Heavenly Father and his perfect plan, the Savior’s atonement can somehow heal the emptiness and pain caused by regret. When our pain turns us to Him and as “we devote ourselves to the pursuit of holiness and happiness, the less likely we will be on a path to regret” (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Oct 2012). May this New Year be a new door to more happiness as we resolve to come closer to Christ. Sincerely, Peter, Amber, and...

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