Primary songs I have known and loved

When the "new" Children's Songbook for Primary came out I had just graduated and moved on to Young Women's. I can still remember when we received a new songbook in the mail and how wonderful it was compared to the old orange book. There were so many new songs, plus the pictures and layout were so pretty. The other day I was playing through the songbook and realized how many songs I used to sing (that are still in the book) that just aren't emphasized in Primary as much as they used to be. Here are some of my favorites from days gone by:

Give Said the Little Stream: I always loved both the tune and the words of this song. Although it is still around in LDS culture, I know my kids don't sing it as often as I did while I was growing up, and the two times I've served in Primary we rarely used it at all. I'm not sure why; it's a fun song to sing and it has a great message as well.

Children All Over the World: I loved the different languages in this song and always looked forward to singing it. In fact, I can still remember some of the pictures from the posters our song leader used to teach us the song. But, it is a hard song to learn and has not been emphasized in any of the recent Primary Programs so I can see why no one sings it anymore. I still think it is due for a revival since it does teach the doctrine of prayer as well as the unity of all Church members worldwide.

I Wonder When He Comes Again: I don't think I really understood what this song was talking about (the Second Coming) until I was an adult, but I loved the tune and the words and would sing it often.

Oh, What do You do in the Summertime?: This song is so much fun, but I think that it has gone the way of many songs that don't have to do with doctrinal topics. Plus it is fairly American-centric in many of its images so it really wouldn't work in a lot of other cultures. I will probably teach it to my kids just for fun, even if they never get to sing it in Primary.

Our Primary Colors: This probably went away with the de-emphasizing of Primary symbols and the re-emphasizing of gospel doctrine. I still like to sing it for fun.

I Am Like a Star: I think this is a very sweet song and a lovely tune, so we really should sing it more often. Now that we don't have class names and 'class songs' this one gets forgotten and not used much, but I still think it is a great song.

Genealogy (I am doing it): I've noticed that in newer versions of the Songbook they have changed this song to "Family History". I imagine that's easier for kids to say, and it goes along with new Church conventions in calling it 'family history'. I just always loved saying 'genealogy" even if I didn't really know what it was.

The Chapel Doors: I don't know if people still sing this one or not; the message is certainly still appropriate for kids, but I don't remember singing it much in either of the Primaries I've been in charge of. The funny thing is that when I sing it I still picture the doors of the building in San Diego where I attended church as a small child.

There are plenty of songs that my children sing that I remember fondly, like Love is Spoken Here, I Love to See the Temple, Book of Mormon Stories, and so on. I also love some of the newer songs, like Scripture Power, My Eternal Family, On a Golden Springtime, He Sent His Son, When I Am Baptized, and A Child's Prayer. I wonder if there will be a newer songbook by the time my children are parents, and what the new songs will be.


AmyJane said…
The other night as I was driving home with the kids (see my blog post) and we were at our wits end, I pulled out a bedtime CD of Primary songs. Some are instrumental, some are sung, but all are peaceful and calming. As we listened and sang along, we all got calmer, quieted and comforted. I was thinking about how much joy and comfort the primary songs have given me in my life, even more than most hymns. I'm glad we had them. :)
Kristi said…
It's interesting how the songs the kids sing has changed since we were kids, that's for sure. I sing Give, Said the Little Stream and Oh, What Do You Do in the Summertime to my girls all the time.

The Primary Colors song and The Chapel Doors song both have newer words now, too. Still throws me off.
Anonymous said…
It was super fun to read this post - reading the song names made me start singing them in my head. And you're right - when I was the primary music leader a few years ago I realized the same thing as you - the kids don't know the good old songs! AND do you notice how many of the older songs have new lyrics - for example, isn't it "Family History, I am doing it"?
Emma said…
Great list! I remember singing all of those songs, and I know they still sing some of them. They have a new song on the Friend website called "One in a million" - I think it also talks about children all over the world.
I hadn't realized that "The Chapel Doors" words had changed - I'll have to look up the new words. I might be teaching my kids the wrong ones :)

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