When the LDS Church published Joseph Smith’s journals, I read them from cover to cover, thinking that it would be a profound spiritual experience to study the life of our founding Prophet. The things I found in his personal accounts were disturbing, confusing, and highly contradictory to modern church teachings. I could not maintain my integrity while also continuing to teach the specious modern narrative of Joseph Smith’s life to these precious girls. So, in June 2017, I resigned from my calling with a very heavy heart. I am still willing to post new activity ideas from whoever wants to contribute. I appreciate your compassion and understanding in this matter.
It can be a challenge to give the girls service opportunities that reach beyond the walls of your LDS church building, but if you are able to do so, it’s a great way to expand their view of the world. This section is dedicated just to service projects that you can do on a weeknight in a typical primary room setting. Daytime/Saturday activities can be found in the “Other” section.
For the star colors, green = completely planned, blue = link to another site, red = just an idea.
A MEANS THE COST IS LESS THAN 25 CENTS PER KID!
Service and Treat
Adopt a Grandparent
Build table easels for displaying pictures in Sunday School
Flower pens (so the church library gets their writing utensils back! Could also be for a school or office of a nonprofit, etc.)
“For God So Loved the World” Valentines for teachers, primary kids, or missionaries.
Make play dough to discuss diversity, then donate it to the nursery.
No-sew zipper cases to organize the coloring materials in the primary closet (or for a local school classroom)
Reflective Ribbon for Bicycling Missionaries
Secret Service Agent (church building)
Single Mother Service Project
Song Aides for Primary
Styrofoam Prints on Thank You Cards (Karen did this activity and recommends buying the sturdier styrofoam plates, not the cheap ones, and using tempura paints for this activity because they dry faster. And use this opportunity to teach them how to write a proper thank you note.)
Toys to make for nursery
Volunteer to do the Mother’s Day treat for your ward this year and make Hershey Kiss Roses.
Babysit for some young families so they can go on a date or go Christmas shopping.
Caroling – this is even more fun when it’s nowhere near Christmas!
Carve pumpkins for the elderly in the ward.
Clean/disinfect nursery toys
Clean/disinfect sacrament trays
Compile a booklet of uplifting thoughts to give to the local missionaries or send to missionaries serving elsewhere. (Combine this with the book binding activity!)
Create ward recycle bins and empty them weekly.
Decorate the Christmas tree in the church building lobby.
Feed the Missionaries
File folder games or quiet toys for the missionaries to give to investigators’ kids during sacrament
Go on a nature hike and collect some flowers, then learn how to press and dry them in a picture frame as a gift for bedridden/hospitalized members.
Learn how to wrap gifts. Offer to wrap gifts for people in the ward, or gather toys for a toy drive and wrap those.
Make paper flowers to give to someone who is in the hospital.
No sew burp cloths for new moms
Wash windows of cars in the church parking lot
“Welcome to the Ward” kits
White hair scrunchies for the temple
Blessing Bags for the Homeless
Food Donation Scavenger Hunt
Build a Little Free Library
Cat toys for a cat shelter
Chemo Care Packages
No-sew dog toys for a dog shelter
No-sew pet beds for a pet shelter
Paint rocks with positive sayings and leave them all over town
Volunteer Match (you can search for kid-friendly projects in your area)
Washi tape pencil flags for teachers
Wildflower Seed Bombs (make and then encourage the girls to spread them throughout the community!)
What’s It Like to be Homeless* (pair ideas from this pamphlet with a project that serves the homeless)
Young Lungs at Play
Give out flowers to people at a park
Halloween Costume Drive
Holiday door decorations for a retirement/assisted living center
If you have a local nonprofit that takes clothing donations, offer to wash some of their donation clothes for them, and use this opportunity to teach clothing care to your girls.
Improve a Local School
Make fleece lap/shoulder throws for a retirement/assisted living center
Make ornaments for a group home or nursing home Christmas tree.
Offer a free car wash. Any “takers” get to watch a video with the missionaries in the air conditioning while you wash their car. Service and missionary work at the same time!
Plant a tree
Valentines for Seniors
Tape baggies with quarters and nice notes inside to a vending machine at the hospital or community center.
Tape bags of microwave popcorn to the side of a Redbox machine with a nice note.
Teacher Appreciation Dinner
“Welcome to the Neighborhood” Kits
Write a letter to an elected official about a cause you believe in.
Blankets for Camp Noah (page and video about Camp Noah)
Cards for Hospitalized Kids
Cards, care packages, and “adoptions” for the Military Community (lots of options here, including not only military members and veterans, but also adopting a military spouse, children of wounded warriors, etc.)
Clip/donate coupons to military/cancer families
Learn to Make Beads and donate them to Beads of Courage
Operation Christmas Child
Origami Cranes of Hope
Pillowcases for Hospitalized Children
Rainbow Loom Bracelets for Kids in Need
Send Kids the World
The World Needs More Love Letters
Books for Africa
Circle of Compassion – Expanding what/who we care about
Days for Girls (have the Relief Society or Young Women make the pads and liners – Activity Day girls can make the drawstring bags without an awkward conversation!)
Have a shoe-cutting party for Sole Hope
Rainbow Loom Bracelets for kids in Ethiopia
One group of girls learned about writing thank-you notes, then learned about the ivory trade and the plight of elephants. They then wrote notes to the Chinese ambassador of the U.S., thanking his country for their recent action to ban all ivory trade. (He wrote back a few months later!) You don’t have to do this same activity – keep your eyes peeled in the world news for something that might resonate with your particular group, then write thank-you letters to the ambassador of the corresponding country.
Thanks to everyone who has contributed ideas to this website. Please contribute your ideas, too! We are stronger when we work together.