Katie's Blog-ness

Trains and Kids and Conference, oh My! September 16, 2012

Filed under: FHE Corner — katiesblogness.wordpress.com @ 7:05 pm
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[An updated version of this is now (April 2016) found here – it even has additional items!]

Well, so much for “I’ll post those tomorrow” about my additional General Conference train cars! Sometimes, tomorrow really means, um, “someday maybe if I get around to that.” Well, thanks to my on-top-of-it friend, I realized tonight that I STILL have not posted my other train pages for note taking at General Conference. Ugh. Oh well, I suppose better now than never! At least it will be before Conference has come and gone!

So I made these trains up as a way for my boys to take “notes” about General Conference. I decided it was time for them to start taking notes. I figured we can still play games to keep them engaged in Conference, but if I want them to want to take notes when they are older, it might be easier if I start helping them to do it now. I did not want to have to site there and transcribe notes for them the whole time or I would have a hard time listening to the Spirit to teach ME what I need to know, so I thought of these as a way they can do it for themselves. I was AMAZED at how well it went for THREE, my SUPER active 5-year-old, and FOUR, my just barely 4-year-old, this Spring. I had a deal with them, if they took notes on a certain number of talks per session, then they earned a prize at the end of each session. They are only on the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, but I am considering making a caboose that can be used for any other speakers that may speak, but that is for another day I am afraid.

These pages work by allowing the kids to color the tie on each train car to match the tie of the speaker as they talk. Then I have sticker pages that I made up that include pictures of each Apostle as well as lots of standard Conference topic images. They look for the sticker that matches the apostle speaking and puts in on their train car. They also add stickers that are about things they hear that speaker talk about. If they are a bit older, they can also draw/color pictures about the talk as well. Each session, we pin up the engine car that matches the session we are starting on a big pin board (the fridge with magnets could work or tape on the wall even). Then, after they have taken their notes on any given talk, they take their train car and add it to the whole train. We take pictures after the session and then the cars come back off and put into sheet protectors in their conference notebooks so they can review their notes over the next 6 months (a random Sunday afternoon activity they like sometimes).

Anyway, that is the idea, and here are the train cars…

Blank Box Car

Box Car Elder Cook

Box Car Elder Hales

Box Car Elder Oaks

Box Car President Monson

Box Car President Packer


Blank Coal Car

Coal Car Elder Andersen

Coal Car Elder Bednar

Coal Car Elder Nelson

Coal Car Elder Scott

Coal Car President Uchtdorf


Blank Tanker Car

Tanker Car Elder Ballard

Tanker Car Elder Christofferson

Tanker Car Elder Holland

Tanker Car Elder Perry

Tanker Car President Eyring


Blank Train Engine

Train Engine Saturday Morning

Train Engine Saturday Afternoon

Train Engine Sunday Morning

Train Engine Sunday Afternoon


As always, the materials posted here are for only personal or church use – no commercial use is OK. The images used to make the sticker sheets reference and for the Apostles on the train cars came from various parts of the lds.org website. I am not publishing these here for my benefit, but to hopefully save someone else time in not needing to again go through the effort to pull them all off their site and drop them in an image manipulation program. I hope you enjoy! 🙂


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51 Responses to “Trains and Kids and Conference, oh My!”

  1. Janelle Says:

    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!

  2. OK – I THINK everything is now updated and typos fixed and right files uploaded. Let me know if I missed anything else. Enjoy and happy Conference fun! 🙂

    • Janelle Says:

      Perfect! Seriously thanks for all the work you do. There are many of us out here that are deeply grateful for the time you put in to help us be super star Mommas:)

  3. Kate Says:

    Thank you so much for putting the work into this! It is just what I was hoping to find for the upcoming conference. I have two boys who I know will love this activity. Thanks for helping our conference run a little more smoothly! 🙂

  4. Ginny Says:

    I’m very excited to have these in my toolbox for Conference, thank you for your work putting it together!
    I am unsure how to proceed on the printing of the stickers. I have the Avery 8160 labels, but when printed the spacing is off. Any recommendations?

    • Oooo – no. I’m not sure why the spacing it off. Honestly, I am being a lame-o and haven’t printed them yet for this conference and they worked fine for me last time. I will try to look at it in a bit and see if I can offer any help.

  5. Emily Empey Says:

    love this,,, Just FYI Eyring is spelled wrong! 🙂 but GREAT IDEA~

  6. […] General Conference Fun                                                                                         Trains and Kids and Conference, oh My! https://katiesblogness.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/trains-and-kids-and-conference-oh-my/ […]

  7. Nicki Says:

    Tho is sooooooo cute!!!!!! I was looking also for the GA paper dolls that were all hooked together…. Did you do that?

    • Thanks! No, I did not make those ones, but I sure do love them! If you head to my post where I used some of those same images, I have the link right to Angela Roberts’ blog. She is the one that did those cute ones. I was SO grateful she let me use her images to make some other General Authority activities with them. I LOVE her stuff and my kids STILL love using those linked paper dolls (that is astounding after so many Conferences using them)! https://katiesblogness.wordpress.com/2012/03/18/general-conferece-part-1/ is the post where you can get back to her page scriptures4kids.com. (Or just type in her page address and surf through all her other great stuff until you land on those paper dolls – I can spend LOTS of time wandering around on her page! So much good stuff!)

      Enjoy! 🙂

  8. kuroanders Says:

    This is perfect for keeping the little ones engaged. Thank you so much for sharing!

  9. My six-year-old loved these last General Conference, so we’re doing it again this time! Thank you!

  10. amber burgess Says:

    I just wanted to say thank you so much for these trains. This will be the 4th (i think) conference that we have used them- and they have been so great for our family. We make one family train, with each of us taking a turn taking notes on a speaker and then hanging it on the wall in our family room. We leave the trains from each session up for about a week after and many great discussions have happened as a result. I am big on bribery in my house 😉 so I have a conference basket with small dollar store type items that the kids get to choose from after they take notes on a speaker. We also have bingo and a packet of activity pages to color. And fun snacks of course 🙂 I really just want my kids to look forward to conference (and stay in the room for each session lol) My oldest is turning 12 this year and I thought about making him his own conference notebook to take notes, but when I mentioned it he said, “But would I still get to do the train?” So I guess I still need to figure it all out- but THANK YOU so much- you have no idea how much we love these trains!!

  11. Linda Kennedy Says:

    I love these trains. The boys can color them and we can tape them on the wall after each session. The trains will be long with 3 boys coloring each one, but that is just fine!

    • Hehehe! I love the mental image you just gave me of three boys happy with trains. I am SO glad I can help with something so lovely as that! 🙂 We tried doing it on our front door our first time with the trains – and I only had two coloring boys. Our train snaked all down the door, more like a big crazy roller coster rather than a train. I think this year we are going to use the biggest wall we can find since little sis thinks she needs to join in the action now too. 🙂

  12. Brynn Says:

    Love these. Thanks so much! Beggars can’t be choosers, I know, but it would be great to have a generic one with a dress to use for female speakers :). I’m excited to use these. Thanks again!

  13. […] the only one that has not got her everything together yet as those numbers of visitors looking for trains or paper dolls or whatever all else (essentially exclusively Conference oriented) has continued to […]

  14. Brindi Says:

    I want to hug you. This is so much better than what I was using for my kids. And they are Train FANATICS…thanks so much so so much!

  15. Katie Ladwig Says:

    I just found these this morning right before Conference started. My kids LOVED it! They ditched their packets I had printed to do the train. We just did a family one as well with each of my kids taking turns with a speaker. My older ones helped the younger ones figure out what the speaker was saying. My 6 year old son on the autism spectrum was so excited to help “decorate for conference” when we hung them on the wall. Thank you for sharing!

  16. […] Conference Train – build a train when hearing certain words, and another one here […]

  17. Stephanie M Says:

    My kids requested the trains again this year. Thanks again!

    • Hehehe! So glad to hear it! I hope you all had a wonderful Conference!
      Side note – I ran out of paper as I was hastily trying to print my collection of General Conference fun to take with us to California and had NO time to get more paper. We went trainless! We didn’t even have any of the flower ones! It made some kids fairly unhappy with here mamma. LOL

  18. Amalie Says:

    Loved this!! I have been waiting a year since i found the for my daughter to be old enough to understand them. I just wish that you had a completely blank car of any type without a tie for when woman speak.

  19. Loved these, but my kids were disappointed there was no caboose!

    • I know – I am too. 😦 Every six months I think, “This time, I’m going to take the time to make a caboose.” Ugh! Does anyone know where to find more time?! I think that may have to be a summer project for me instead of trying to do it around General Conference time or something, otherwise it may just never happen – at least not while I’m in school. But hey, I can follow a little train’s example right? I think I can, I think I can! I will get that caboose made yet!

  20. Angela Says:

    any chance you will do an updated version when new apostles are called this October? We love this and have been using it for a couple years now! Or if you’d be willing to share your doc so we can edit and make our own? Thanks

    • YES! I am planning to spend part of my weekend doing an update and then re-updating after we get the new apostles. (fingers crossed that this actually happens) But I am also very happy to share the files, but I create them as .svg files and people tend to not be sure what to do with them. I will try to at least get far enough as to share the files so they can be edited, but I’m hoping to do much more than that. I’m so glad you enjoy them. It just makes me giddy when people can use something I made and finally figured out how to share! It’s SO much better than just making them and using them at home with my kids and that being the end of it! 🙂

  21. Hi everyone! I have felt that I need to spend my time on my family, my work, and some things I am doing for our PTA right now instead of doing any updating or adding this time around. I hope that what I already have will still be a blessing for some of you. To find all my General Conference-ish stuff, please follow the tag on any of those posts or simply use this link. Happy Conference everyone!!! 🙂


  22. Ashlee Says:

    We love the conference trains too! Looking forward to the ones with the new apostles. What about one for the women speakers also (minus the tie maybe?)

    • I totally want to do one for the sisters and I’d also like to do one that just says “Elder _____” and one that says “Bishop ______” for those outside the 15. But I guess it’s a good thing there is a Conference every 6 months. I get to keep trying! LOL 🙂

  23. […] had decided to give up on doing anything with my Conference Train for this April Conference. Sometimes even good things have to get set aside for better and best […]

  24. I did it!!!! I FINALLY made a caboose!!!! 🙂 (It’s in the updated version linked to above.)

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