Are you teaching Tell Me Dear Lord this year in primary? Use this Tell Me Dear Lord Action Words activity to teach this song in singing time. This is one of the many songs included in this year’s New Testament song for Primary list.
Hand actions are a simple way to keep your primary kiddos engaged while learning a new song in primary! Use these hand actions for keywords in the song for a fun way to introduce, or review this song!
Tell Me Dear Lord Action Words
One of my favorite ways to teach a new primary song is by using hand actions. Whether you are using official American Sign Language or made up hand actions, this can be a great way to help a song stick in your memory longer!
At the beginning of singing time, post the first page of the action words symbols on the board. Ask the kids: “Can anyone guess which song we’ll be learning today? This might be a song you have never heard before!”
Say or sing the first phrase, “Tell me, dear Lord” and introduce two actions for that phrase. Cup your hands near your mouth for “tell” and point up on “Lord.” Have the kids try this line with you.
Then, sing the next line and fold your arms as you sing “In thine own way I pray.” Try singing the first two phrases together!
Speak or sing the next line and have the children repeat after you. Then, teach the simple lap – clap pattern outlined later in this post.
Try the first two lines of the song along with the first page of actions. Are you ready to learn the rest of the song?
Post the second action words page and begin teaching the last two lines of the song in the same manner as the first half. Then, try all the action words and sing the entire song using our Tell Me Dear Lord flipchart!
This activity works well as an introduction activity, but can also be adapted for a review idea! If you’ve already introduced this song in primary, you can definitely still use this activity to review!
Be sure to check out our additional extension ideas below for more ways to use this activity in singing time!
Tell Me Dear Lord Action Words:
I’ve outlined some actions for major keywords in the first verse of Tell Me Dear Lord. I’ve also created a printable with visuals for each hand action later in this post. Grab the visuals to help teach the actions!
Tell/Say – Cup hands near mouth
Lord – Point upward
Pray – Fold arms
What thou would’st have me / Help me to understand – Pat Lap –> Clap 2X*
Do – March in Place
Know – Point finger toward temple
Love/Loving – Make heart shape with hands or give yourself a hug
Word – Open hands to imitate a book
For the Lap – Clap pattern, pat your knees then clap your hands. Use this pattern while singing the line, “What thou would’st / have me,” repeating at the start of the new measure. Repeat this pattern later in the song for the line, “Help me to / understand.”
- For a fun review idea, cut up the action words symbols and arrange them in mixed order on one side of the board. Keep the lap clap pattern as one strip. On the other side of the board, write the lyrics to the song. Have the kids work together to put the symbols above the correct word or phrase.
- Split the room into two groups. Give the first page of the pattern to one group, and give the second page to the other group. Have each group try to decipher their action words. Have them check with you to see if it’s correct! Then, have them teach each other!
- Instead of singing the keywords, hum them! Each time you do an action, hum instead of sing! You can also reverse this – sing only the keywords and hum the rest of the song!
For another fun similar activity, head over to see this When We’re Helping Action Words singing time activity!
Tell Me Dear Lord Action Words Printable Song Helps
This free in-post printable includes a 2-page pattern guide with keyword symbols to represent hand actions for the first verse of the song!
Join INSTANT Primary Singing for extended printables including the 2nd verse, a 1-page poster, and black and white printables. You’ll find these bonus files included when Tell Me Dear Lord is the featured song of the month.
To access the free in-post printables for this post, you’ll just need to create a free account or login with the Grow.me tool. Then, confirm by email and refresh the page and ALL my free printables will automatically unlock in every post!
For more information on why I use a content lock or how to create your account, you can see the FAQ page here.
Looking for another review idea? Head over to this fun Tell Me Dear Lord Crack the Code activity!
What other fun ways will you use this Action Words singing time activity in your Primary room?