Sunday, April 26, 2015

FHE Lesson {100 Years of Family Home Evening}

A recent Family Home Evening  ~ Palm Sunday Lesson

This week marks 100 years of Family Home Evening!
such an inspired program and needed more than ever!

As a person who feels like they've done ALOT of FHE Lessons know that:
Everyone struggles with FHE at one time or another. 
Sometimes we need a spark, to restart or change some things about how FHE is run.

This week isn't a lesson but some ideas of things we've done over the years to help us with FHE.

Please feel free to leave your suggestions in comments below!

So Here are some tips I've used over the years to lengthen out FHE to more than a few minutes.

:: Journal Writing
Use the first few minutes of FHE to write in journals. (I did this more when I had little children) The girls would draw a picture of anything that happened in the last week in their journals. Then I would write the words above for them. I found this helped me as I was now keeping atleast a weekly update of what they were getting up to.

:: Scripture Hero/Story
I was helping in Primary and they were holding up a picture of Adam and Eve and asking who it was. I was shocked when neither my 3 or 6 year old answered! They KNOW THAT!. But then I thought about it, and realized we had moved beyond holding up pictures and sharing the bible stories as our older kids grew and moved into more subject orientated FHE. Having 14 years-5 years old in the family we have to make sure we cover both younger and older learners. 

Each week the younger children will hold up a picture from the gospel art kit and tell us about it, ask us questions on who is this? What is this story?

:: 60 Seconds
When our kids were little they could not even sit still to hear the lesson! We instigated a 60 seconds of silence with a timer. They had to sit still and not talk. It took a while before they could even do this!! A few times we would say we have to restart! Overtime they got used to it and looked forward to it - as a parent I found pure silence to be very relaxing and good way to start FHE

We have a fairly large whiteboard that we use often. Whiteboard can be used for pictionary, drawing out the lessons, games, for the little ones to scribble on while we focus on the older ones, or for older children to be scribes {give them something to do}

::Song App
We have the Childrens Songbook App for our Ipad. It has most of the childrens songs with the words and a bouncy ball when to sing the words. It also has several photos to go with the songs. When we sing we use the app and our younger child slides the pictures for us while we sing. It makes it fun and they want to sing for a long time! The lovely MR uses cable between the Ipad and TV so we get it on the big screen!

Monday Night is our Fancy Dinner Night. I try to cook a better dinner on Mondays, with sides and with dessert. We set the table with a table cloth and try to make it look nice. We start our FHE before Dinner. We open with prayer and sing Love at Home while all holding hands around the table. This is the opening of FHE for us. Once dishes are cleared we go straight into FHE. It helps extend the length and idea of FHE to our kids and they know that Monday night is family night from about 5:30pm-7pm

{I'm sad to say that after about 2+ years of doing this it has fallen by the wayside the last year. Just last week, my 8 year old leant across, reached for my hand and said 'we havent sung Love at Home ,holding hands in ages! I miss it! (of course during a busy, stressful night when it was the last thing I wanted to do!! kids really do know the right thing!) so reinstating this might be my goal for FHE!}

::Articles of Faith
We printed and laminated each Article of Faith on a separate piece of paper. The girls take turns choosing an article of faith to hold up, read out, make us guess

We have a shy girl or two so we take time having turns at practicing our testimonies.

:: Now we have two young women we are including Personal Progress goals and what they are working on

:: Here are 2 years worth of Lessons by me


Here's another short lesson I previously wrote about how to plan FHE better in 2013.
Its always a good time to ask your kids what they want more of!
I thought it would fit in with the goal planning night.

We put forth the question to our girls - 
What can we all do to make Family Home Evening better this year?
What things would you like to do?

 These are the answers they came up with:

:: Chocolate for the treat

:: An "I love You because..." spot (one person each week and we will list things we love about them)

:: Bring back 60 second silence (to get our kids to be quiet and get ready for FHE and to practice reverence we use to time to see how long they could be completely quiet for)

:: Take Turns at teaching the lesson

:: Outings for FHE once every two months

:: A hug at the beginning and end of FHE

:: Recite/learn more scriptures

:: More games

:: Continue with our 'fancy dinner' night meals before FHE 
{we set the table with tablecloth and full settings and fancy cups on Monday night and try to have a good quality meal. Interesting side note the kids are more acceptable to higher quality (read vegetables) meals on these nights because I say this is what you would get in a restaurant ;)

:: Act out stories of different prophets in the Book of Mormon and scriptures

:: Always sing Popcorn and Snowman

Most of these we thought up by our kids. I was very surprised at a few of them. Even though this is a completely SIMPLE idea for a FHE I thought I would share it because our girls came up with some lovely ideas I wouldn't have thought of myself, or knew that they wanted.

Wishing you all the best with successful Family Home Evenings.

What suggestions would you share for Family Home Evening?

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