We are getting down to the nitty gritty of the primary program! If you need help putting together and writing a 2021 primary program outline, you have come to the right place! Below is a simple format that follows Music for Singing Time 2021 Come Follow Me – Doctrine and Covenants that any primary can implement!
My primary president asked if I had any ideas for a 2021 primary program. So I sent her a quick email with my suggestions. She liked what I sent her so I simply took it step further and put together an outline to share here.
Now, I know not every program outline will fit with every primary. But hopefully this outline will spark some ideas so you can create a program to your primary’s needs.
Our primary has roughly 25-30 kids so we have enough time for each child to speak a small part at the pulpit (2 sentences or less). The plan is to sing the first verse to the 2 hymns then have the congregation join in on the rest of the hymn verses. Then we will be singing all the verses to all the other primary songs listed.
We learn the songs in singing time throughout the year with the goal to have words memorized. But come program day, I always post the words. I prefer this method over creating little books for everyone to hold. I feel they end up becoming a distraction throughout the program.
Sometimes we have kids show up who rarely come to primary throughout the year. Posting words helps them not feel so left in the dark when it’s time to sing. It also gives kids a boost who are shy and may forget the words once they are up singing.
A final perk about posting the words is I get almost every reading child’s eyes on me when we sing!
Primary Program Outline
This primary program outline revolves around the songs we learned this year for the program. These are the same songs I gave the primary presidency last year to approve HERE. I first began my outline by writing down all our primary songs we’ve learned for the program.
2021 Primary Songs
- Joseph Smith’s First Prayer hymn 26
- The Priesthood is Restored p. 89
- When He Comes Again p. 82
- Jesus Said Love Everyone p. 61
- Have I Done Any Good? hymn #223
- Reverence is Love p. 31
With my list of songs, I found a scripture from Doctrine and Covenants that I to associate with each song.
- Joseph Smith—History 1:14–20
- Joseph Smith—History 1:68-72
- Doctrine and Covenants 45:44–45
- Doctrine and Covenants 38:24–27
- Doctrine and Covenants 42:38
- Doctrine and Covenants 63:64
The scriptures may or may not be read in sacrament meeting (depending on time, etc.). They can be read by a 2nd teacher of each class, or by the same teacher, or not at all. If you have an older primary child, they can also read all the scriptures. Lots of options! But they are mainly to help families write talks using help from the scriptures if they like.
I then created a statement to be answered by the primary children that coincides with each primary song. Each class was then assigned a statement that I thought would be the most age appropriate.
- “Joseph Smith’s First vision teaches me …” 6/7 year olds
- “The priesthood has been restored. This teaches me …” 10/11 year olds
- “Knowing that Jesus Christ will come again teaches me…” 8/9 year olds
- “Jesus said to love everyone. I can show love by …” Sunbeams
- “I can serve others by …” 4 year olds
- “I can be reverent by …” 5 year olds
Then I wrote a quick summary for each song. The teachers of each class will be reading these summaries before they help their class with their parts at the microphone:
Joseph went to a grove of trees near his home to pray. He knelt down and asked Heavenly Father which church he should join. He looked up and saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. This event known as the first vision marked the restoration of God’s church on earth again. Find the reference HERE.
After Jesus Christ died and was resurrected, His Apostles died. The priesthood was lost from the earth. Heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, sent John the Baptist to restore the Aaronic Priesthood to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. Then they could baptize others and bless them through the power of the priesthood. Find the reference HERE.
Jesus has promised that he will come again. We can prepare for the Second Coming by doing what is right. We will know that His coming is near when we see the signs He has promised. No one knows exactly when He will come again, but if we are prepared, we can be with Him then. Find the reference HERE.
It is important that we learn to love each other. It is the second great commandment. Heavenly Father wants us to love every one of his children, just as he wants us to love each member of our own families. We can show love by helping others understand their eternal worth to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Find the reference HERE.
Jesus showed us how to serve others. He came to earth to help us. Everywhere He went He helped people. He taught people the gospel. He visited and blessed people who were sick. He helped people who had disabilities. He was a friend to the lonely. By serving others, Jesus did what Heavenly Father wanted Him to do. When We serve others, we Serve God and this makes us happy. Find the reference HERE.
Reverence is more than just being quiet. It is a spiritual communication between us and our Father in heaven. When we are reverent, we don’t do anything that reflects negatively upon the Lord or His Church. This does not mean just during meetings, but it includes our conduct wherever we may be or in whatever we do. Find the reference HERE.
Once I put everything in order, that became the premise to my outline!
This outline is available in my Resource Library for you to save, then edit as a Google Docs document. You will not be able to edit until you go to “file” and “make a copy.” Once saved on your own file system, you can edit it.
Please do not “Request Access to Edit” (the blue button at the top). If I give access to everyone, the version I originally created would be different each time someone else opens the document.
Access my printables at my Resource Library. Instructions for accessing my Resource Library are found at the bottom of this post.
Once the outline is written, next comes assigning parts. So I created these pages (there are 6 different pages for each part in my Resource Library):
Again, these files are saved as Google Docs so make a copy so you can edit your own.
Cut them in half and pass them out to teachers to give to parents (or have the presidency do it – but I like to involve teachers!). To be returned either the following Sunday, or have families take a picture of it and text it back to teachers or a member of the primary presidency.
Once all the parts are received, insert them into your outline. Voila! Program finished!
Questions and Answers
What do I do if I have a big primary?
- Have each child pass a microphone down the line so they don’t have to take time getting up to the pulpit
- Have everyone give one-word answers
- Break up your program into 2 or even 3 different programs given on different Sundays
- Cut back on the amount of songs/verses you sing
- Assign some children singing parts and others speaking parts
What do I do if I have a small primary?
- Involve families to contribute talks and to help singing
- Invite teachers and the primary presidency to help speak and sing
- Only fill a portion of the meeting
What about kids who don’t want to participate?
- Never force children to participate. It’s completely optional.
What other questions do you have? Leave a comment and I’ll try to answer them here!
Don’t be afraid to discuss options and ideas with your bishopric or stake primary presidency.
Go to the Source
To find more help with primary programs, I suggest brushing up on what the church handbook states HERE. Scroll down to 126.96.36.199. It states:
…The annual children’s sacrament meeting presentation is held during the last few months of the year. The children present what they have learned at home and at church during the year. They help the congregation focus on Heavenly Father, the Savior, and Their teachings.
The Primary presidency and music leader prayerfully plan the presentation. The bishopric gives direction. Children may sing, give talks, and share stories, scriptures, or testimonies.
The presentation may take all or part of the meeting time after the sacrament. Units with few children may invite children’s family members to participate.
Because of the sacredness of sacrament meeting, the presentation should not include visuals, costumes, or media presentations.
For more primary program tips, tricks and helps, scroll through my posts HERE.
All my printables are free and filed on my Resource Library. Filing instructions for accessing each printable on my Resource Library are below the button.
These printables are filed on my Resource Library page under Category Title > Primary Program Outline > 2021.