1st Article of Faith: Sign language

Can your hands follow my hands?

I show the hand sign for God and say the word.  I repeat this twice.

I show the hand sign for Eternal and say the word, repeating it twice.  (Click the word eternal below for a link.)


I show the hand sign for Father, say the word, and repeat it.


I show the hand sign for Jesus Christ and say the words, repeating it twice.

Jesus Christ

I show the hand sign for Holy Ghost and say the words.  I repeat this twice.

Holy Ghost

(These examples are taken from many different websites so that you have a variety to choose from.)


I begin to sing the song, “We believe in God, …” doing the hand signs we have just reviewed as we sing the song all the way through.

Ask the pianist to play the song slowly while we take the song “inside,” only singing with our hands, no sung words.  Again, we sing the song with our hand signs, but no sound.


The beauty of this way of learning is that it links the kinesthetic memory with the conscious memory of the words.  There is something sacred and beautiful about using your body (a temple) so sing about truths of the gospel.  In addition, when you sign without sound, often the words and melody of the song will run through the child’s mind as they move, a very strong way to learn a song.



5 Responses

  1. Bryn Chandler

    Thank you for all your hard work and being willing to share your ideas on this website!! I noticed in other posts that you mentioned you have trainings coming up. I live out East- in CT and wouldn’t be able to attend a UT training. Would you consider LiveStreaming your training? Or perhaps recording it to download? I noticed you had previously posted one to download from last year or 2 yrs ago. Would most of the info be the same? I’d love to get the ideas for this year’s songs.

    • Sharla Dance

      There is someone that will be filming the Payson workshop. I’ll ask her if I can get the footage and share it.

  2. Maile Fano

    My sister has attended one of your workshops up in WA and sent me the information about the workshop that was down here. My mother also sent it to me. I took that as “I really needed to attend.” It was FANTASTIC and I wish I could just sit with you one on one and pick your brain. You inspire and make music so much fun! I feel like I am finally beginning to connect with MY kids in all of primary. I LOVE each one of them! I have learned through watching my sister and just being comfortable, that music can be fun and not always quiet to get them to sing. I absolutely love taking my instruments that I have bought at DI to primary and helping them create a “symphony” for me to sing along. In fact, the older primary was playing the bells and it sounded lovely, but someone from the RS came and closed the door because it was too loud for them to hear, at least that is what I assume. Thanks for everything you do and sharing your talents.

    • Sharla Dance

      Dear Maile, This makes me smile! Your love for the children comes shining through. They are so lucky! Thank you for your kind words and thank you for the children’s sake!

  3. Annie

    I noticed some misconceptions about the Godhead in our primary recently. JR thought we prayed to Jesus – had to clarify that we pray TO Heavenly Father IN Jesus’ name. And then in SR on the same day, one of the children thought we had two Heavenly Fathers (after singing the song Fathers and identifying our earthly father, father of the ward and Heavenly Father). He thought Jesus was our second Heavenly Father so we had to clarify that relationship too. I came home and planned to work on the first AofF the following week to reinforce these “new” ideas to them. I’m noticing that signing songs as JR comes into primary is really working out well with that group and was hoping to maybe sign this one too. So when I found this page, it was exactly what I was looking for! Used it as an arrival song last week and it went great! Thank you!!

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