We had our primary program today and it went great. I am so proud of how many children signed the songs in the end. We taught them all along the signs, and really expected them to sign 2. But there were hearing kids signing on every song.
Some things that we did that were effective:
Songs with lots of verses, spotlight kids singing duets and have the rest join in on the chorus. We had all but 3 children involved that way at some point throughout the program.
Make their seating arranged so that parents can see them even if that means they are spread out.
Put a list next to the podium with the order of classes and songs so they can see really easily what's coming up next:
"As a child of God"
Give teachers a copy of the songs to sing from.
For songs that everyone is singing, have the children come forward to the rail so parents can see them. Practice where they should stand and how to get there fast. It was adorable and comical how our kids were dashing to their spots.
We used strips of lint remover tape to put their names on the seats and show where their class should stand on the carpet.
Be responsible for all talks and papers the children are reading from so they won't be forgotten on the day of the practices or performance.
Use a consistent script for the children so they will not be put off by miniscule changes and forget what to say. M can't really read, but seeing the same script each time prompts her to say the part right.
Encourage the children to memorize their parts so they can look out at the audience.
I'm lucky to be very vain. Everyone keeps saying that this is the best primary program they've ever seen. I'm surprised, but I also believe them.
Ahhhhh, so glad to be done.