Christmas Songs: Stars Were Gleaming

Can you put these stars in order?

UPDATE: I have been getting a lot of requests for these files so here is the download link that will print out an 8×11 per star – stars-were-gleaming


Children have great visual memory.  This activity taps into that great ability.



Put these stars around the room.  Ask the children, “What do you notice about these pictures?  What’s the same?  What’s different?”  Receive the children’s answers.


“What do these pictures have to do with this song?”  Sing the song.  Receive the children’s answers.


“Can you help me put these stars in order according to the song as I sing?”  Tap a child on the shoulder to bring a star up and put it in order on the board as you sing.  Continue doing that until all the stars are up.  “Let’s check if the stars are in the right order.”  Sing the song and point to the stars as they come in the song.  (If they are out of order, let the children discover it with some hints.)

Sing the song together.  (The children will have heard it about 4 times or more.)

Extension:  Ask the children, “If I take away 3 different stars, can you remember what was on them?”  Take away the stars and have the children tell you what was on the stars.  Sing the song.  Take away a few more stars.  Remember what was on the stars and sing the song again.


Here are the stars in order:

(Images were drawn by Andrea Burgon.)











In order to print these images one to a page, select the image, then right click to download onto your computer.

UPDATE: I have been getting a lot of requests for these files so here is the download link that will print out an 8×11 per star – stars-were-gleaming

89 Responses

  1. Lindsay Hickok

    When I saved them and then tried to print, they were very small. Is there some way you can share a pdf or different format? I’d love to use these photos/activity in Primary.

    • Sharla Dance

      I will get my tech guy working on it, but for now I used your email address and sent you the files directly.
      Take care, Sharla

  2. Ember Fife

    Thank you ♥♥♥

  3. I was unable to print the individual images on a full sheet of paper… the above image file sizes are too small.

    • Sharla Dance

      I will get my tech guy working on it, but for now I used your email address and sent you the files directly.
      Take care, Sharla

  4. These are so cute! When I download these they are too small to enlarge for a clear image. Any chance you could reload them bigger?

    • Sharla Dance

      I will get my tech guy working on it, but for now I used your email address and sent you the files directly.
      Take care, Sharla

  5. Elizabeth Duran

    Love the pictures but need them bigger. The link to download is not working.

    • Sharla Dance

      I will get my tech guy working on it, but for now I used your email address and sent you the files directly.
      Take care, Sharla

  6. When I right click to save these to my computer, they are not downloading large enough to use. Can you upload bigger files? Right now these are 232 x 300 pixels.

    • Sharla Dance

      I will get my tech guy working on it, but for now I used your email address and sent you the files directly.
      Take care, Sharla

  7. Melissa stokes

    Please send me the direct file too. Thanks so much

  8. These pictures are beautiful! Thank you for allowing us to use them. Could I get the PDF of these as well? Thank you!

  9. Julie Bassett

    Thanks for all of your wonderful ideas! Could I also get a copy of the files?

  10. I would like the pictures emailed too.

    Many thanks to you, your tech guy, your darling daughter in the videos, and anyone else who helps you! I appreciate all your great ideas you share with us!

  11. I would also love the files as mine are also printing small.
    Thanks tons! Debbie

  12. Marla Jones

    Your pictures are perfect! Can you please email me the files directly?

  13. Hi Sharla,
    I love your ideas so much. Can you please email the files directly to me?
    Thank you so much!

  14. Please may I ‘bug’ you for the files too? Thank you!!

  15. Sharla, will you please send me the files directly, too? Thank you and Merry Christmas!

    • Sharla Dance

      Merry Christmas! Let me know if they don’t arrive. Take care, Sharla

  16. Jodi Parrish

    Thank you for your time and inspiration. I am grateful that you were given this spiritual gift so “…that all may be profited thereby.” Please send me the files too. 🙂

    • Sharla Dance

      Thank you for kind words. I sent the file. Let me know if it doesn’t come. Take care, Sharla

  17. I haven’t received a copy of the files yet. Can you please resend?
    Thank you!

  18. I love these pictures and this idea. Can I please get a copy sent to my email?
    Thank you!!

  19. Danielle Pezely

    Can I have the files emailed as well? These pictures are perfect!!

  20. Thank you for your ideas and hard work! I would love a copy of the files. Thank you!

  21. Stephanie Bare

    I would love to have you email me the file for these. They are so great! However, when I copy them they are too small so they become blurry when I enlarge them. Thank you so much!

  22. Barbara Gifford

    I am so glad to see a new post on your site. I join the others in saying thanks for this idea and for all your help. I have done Primary music for several years and have a son with Down Syndrome so I really appreciate the tips you give for teaching in different ways to reach different learning styles and abilities. I am excited about these visuals and would ask that you email them to me as well. Thanks also to the artist Andrea Burgon. Merry Christmas!

    • Sharla Dance

      Thank you for thinking of Andrea Burgon. She and I published books together for a few years a long time ago. She is amazing to do all this work and offer it to so many. I sent you the files. Take care, Sharla

  23. Thank you! Thank you! I love using your wonderful ideas in Primary.
    Could I please get the file emailed also?

  24. Desiree Roberts

    I appreciate all that you do to help us be better music leaders! Will you please send me an email with the stars so I can use them on Sunday? Thank you so much!

  25. Can I please have this file emailed also?
    Thank you! Thank you!

  26. Can you send me the file?

  27. And thank you so much!!

  28. Hi Sharla,

    I am new to Primary and would love the star files to teach on the 18th. I’m busy reading your entire site!

    Thank you!

  29. These are beautiful! Can I also have the file emailed to me? I would love to use these on Sunday. Thank you!

  30. Mary Jane Wadley

    Sharla, Thank you for this inspired idea. I have also tried to print them off at my local copy store and they are too small. Could you possibly send me the pdf file as well?

  31. Margaret westerberg

    I would love these star images also. Thank you so much. Love the idea

  32. Hi Sharla,

    Love this idea! Thanks so much for the wonderful workshop you gave in Saratoga last month. I’ve been implementing what you taught, and the kids are loving it! I’m the gal with the 3 year old son and baby. 🙂 Could you please email me the files for this song too?


  33. I’d love a copy as well!

  34. Cherice Montgomery

    Yes, I am having the same problem. I’d love to have the original file e-mailed. Such a cute activity!

  35. I would love the larger files email too please. Thanks for your nice work. 🙂

  36. Sharla- I appreciate all you do to help folks like me bring the joy of music to the hearts of children! I’d greatly appreciate a larger version of Andrea’s great stars.
    Merry Christmas!

  37. If you are willing to send the files in yet another email, I would love a copy. Thanks so much.

  38. I’d love a copy of the files too. Looking forward to using them on Sunday.

  39. Bonnie Caldwell

    I’m also unable to download the images. I love your site as I am in the Netherlands and I need pictures because the words don’t help in another language! I would love an email with the pictures!

  40. I’d love to get a copy of them larger too!

  41. I would love a larger copi also

  42. Please may I have this file emailed also. I thought I recognized Andrea’s artwork. I used it long ago. I too am so glad you have added something to your blog. Thank you for all you do.

  43. Would you please send me a copy as well? Thanks so much for all you do. I’m not creative enough to do this calling alone.

  44. Thank you for all you do! Could I please have an email too?

  45. Hi is there any way you can send me the files for this. I would love a copy! Thanks so much.

  46. Melissa Eschler

    I would love them emailed to me as well. Thank you for all you do. You have amazing ideas.

  47. I would love to have these files emailed to me as well. Thank you for all your ideas!

  48. Alinda Olsen

    I would love to receive an email as well. Thank you so much! It was fun to meet you in Ohio!!!

  49. Thank you so much for your work and support, Sharla! I have been teaching as close to your style as possible for one year now, and it makes such a difference in our primary! I know you have got to be so busy, but it means so much when you post a new idea like this. Tell the wonderful artist ‘thank you’ as well!

  50. Bess Kannan

    so glad to see you back!!

  51. Kristin Derrick

    Could you also email those to me! They are so adorable! Thank you!

  52. Hi Sharla, I am so happy that you’re back. I would also love to have this file sent to me. Thank you for all you do!

  53. This idea worked so well with my Jr primary kids! They loved the pictures and putting them in the right order. I was wondering if you had something similar for the second verse? Just looking for a great idea for the next time I teach this song. Thank you so much!

  54. Jeanette Pitcher

    I would also like the enlarged version when you get it.

  55. I know Christmas is over, but we will be singing this song again next year with a little different arrangement. Could you please also e-mail me the file, so I can use it to reteach my Jr. Primary? Thank you.

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