Tips & Tricks: Using Flip Charts in Primary

This Tips & Tricks for Using Flip Charts post was
originally shared on my site, A Mom’s Take.

You can view the original published article here. I have republished
here on my new blog, Primary Singing, as it’s a better fit for the content!

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Today, it’s all about the tips and tricks for singing time flip charts! Do you have secret tricks and ways to use flip charts that help you make them more useful or simplify the process for you?

Today, I’m sharing my tips and what works for me, but I can’t wait to hear what works and helps you – too!

Tips and tricks for easier singing time flip charts! So helpful for the Primary music leader / chorister while conducting and learning new songs! LDS printables for new choristers. #LDS #SingingTime #MusicLeader #Chorister #FlipCharts

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Getting Started with
Singing Time Flip Charts

Essential Supplies for Primary Flip Charts: 

  • Heavyweight Sheet Protectors – Don’t skimp on sheet protectors, you’ll use them for everything and the heavyweight option is definitely the way to go.They won’t flop or bend over while you’re holding them and won’t crease easily.Start with at least a 200 pack, like these ones on Amazon. Or go big with a 500-pack of sheet protectors (it’s cheaper than 2 boxes of 400!) and you’ll be set for good!
  • Split rings – These amazing little rings make flip charts so easy and portable. Plus, they fit right into my singing time binder. Look for 11mm or .5″ split rings or key rings. These are one of the best investments I’ve made in my calling (after egg shakers!)
  • 3-ring Binder – 1″ or 1.5″ 3-ring binder works great for holding all your singing time music that you’ll use for the month. I have a 1.5″ binder and there is room to spare.I also keep a 3″ binder to store all the songs I’ve printed up and for flip charts I’ve previously used but don’t need for that month’s primary song list. My favorite is the “Better Binder” as they are so durable, but any would do.
  • Instant Ink – A lifesaver for me has been my HP connected printer with Instant Ink subscription. I usually pay $4.99/month and with that I get 100 prints included.Whenever my ink runs out, Instant Ink mails me replacement ink cartridges. I print everything in full color and use a ton of ink each month, without worries as my print cost is so low!

    Sometimes, especially the first month or two of the year while I’m preparing for the new song list, I’ll up my plan to the $9.99/month plan that gives me 300 prints.It’s totally worth it for the freedom of printing what I want when I want to and never worrying about running out of ink! Sign up to get 1 free month of Instant Ink!

Tips & Tricks for Singing Time Flip Charts

Use Split Rings! – I didn’t want to hassle with multiple pieces of paper or being tied to the podium. I wanted to be able to hold the words, move about the front, still be able to lead and make hand motions / signals, all while using a flip chart for those times when they’re needed.

Split rings was the game changer that let me have an individual “book” that flips around the rings during the song so I could move about the room while just showing a single page at a time, and easily hold the flip chart without losing the order or pacing of the song.

See how I Make & Use Flip Charts in this post!!

Write Words on the Back – A great trick you can, and absolutely should, use is writing the lyrics on the back of the flip chart printed pages.

I’ll arrange all the pages into the sheet protectors, then write the lyrics from the front page onto the back page – the one that will be facing me while I’m holding the flip chart.

singing time flip charts

This allows me to follow along, know when to flip the chart, and have a helpful reminder of the words easy to see! Sneaky, sneaky!

Keep them in your Singing Time Binder – At the end of each month, I update my singing time binder to hold all the songs for the upcoming month.

I’ve shared a whole post about how I set up my Singing Time binder, including lots of printables I stuff inside so be sure to pop over to that post next.

I’ll also prepare any flip charts that I’ll want to use for the month. Often, this means pulling out the papers from previous flip charts to make room for the new monthly songs to take their place.

I keep songs I plan to use again that year in their setup, but switch out others that I won’t be using again that year to reuse the same rings.

lds flip charts

What works best for me is using the same opening, closing, welcome, and birthday songs for the entire month.

See my Singing Time Song List post for more information and my printable list! I’ll even stick to the same 3 songs we’ll practice throughout the month.

My flip chats are stored right in my singing time binder directly behind the printed music. This makes it a cinch to find and access during singing time. I’ll simply open the binder rings, pull out the flip chart, and we’ll get right to singing!

Condense (More lyrics per page) – One of my pet peeves with flip charts is too few of words per page. I prefer a verse to have no more than 2-3 pages, where possible.

Some songs are too long to fit this limitation, but most work great with a smaller main picture and 2 phrases per page. For example, in the song “If the Savior Stood Beside Me,” I created a flip chart that fit two phrases on a single page.

This turns the first verse into just 2 pages, rather than 4-6! That means a lot less fumbling with flipping the pages! It really makes it much easier to lead with less page turns.

In another example, the song “An Angel Came to Joseph Smith,” I put the entire 1st verse lyrics on a single page!

Most welcome and birthday songs can fit across 2 pages making it easy to simply flip the chart from the front to the back (no split rings necessary)!

I have shared the flip charts I have created. I always aim to use as few pages as possible – saving me paper, ink, and struggle while leading!

Lyrics Book – One last trick you can use, I got this idea from Camille’s Primary Ideas, is to print out the entire verse (no pictures) as a reference point for practices or for use in the Primary program!

I found it clunky to use during everyday weeks as I was trying to balance a lyrics book with my singing time binder and any props for the week and it was just too much.

You can grab the Primary Program flip chart version under each of the flip charts, too!

I do use the lyrics book for those review weeks leading up to the Primary Program. I used the lyrics book on my music stand while conducting the program – no other big posters or props were needed!

Worked great and helpful for those kids that still needed the words. See how I make a Primary Program lyrics book here!

Singing Time Ideas Using Flip Charts – Once you have prepared flip charts, they can even be used for super simple, no-prep, singing time lessons! I’ve shared a whole post with 10 different easy Flip Chart Singing Time Ideas!

Favorite Primary Posts
Still on A Mom’s Take Blog

See all our posts categorized under LDS for more helpful resources for Primary music leaders, including how I get organized for primary with my singing time binder and what works best for me for nursery singing time!

I can't gush enough about how organized this Primary Singing Time binder has made me! No more scrambling Sunday morning, this covers everything, no Children's Songbook required! A great resource for an LDS Primary Chorister / Music Leader #LDS #Mormon #ImaMormon #Primary #SingingTime #SharingTime #MusicLeader #PrimaryChorister #Organized #Primary #IAmaChildofGodSinging Time Binder Organization & Lots of printables!!

LDS Nursery Singing Time ideas with props, printables, song list, activities, actions, and ideas!! Perfect for singing with toddlers and preschoolers. #LDS #SingingTime #Nursery #Primary #Mormon #ImaMormon #Singing #KidsActivities #MusicActivitiesNursery Singing Time Ideas