Lesson 29: I Can Say I’m Sorry

Primary 1: I Am a Child of God, (2000), 95–97


Purpose

To help each child understand that when we do something wrong, we should say we are sorry and try to correct the wrong thing we have done.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Mosiah 27:8–37.

  2. 2.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A Book of Mormon.

    2. b.

      A small toy that could fit in a pocket.

  3. 3.

    Make the necessary preparations for any Enrichment Activities you want to use.

Learning Activities

Invite a child to give the opening prayer.

Attention Activity

As the children enter the room or gather for the lesson, deliberately make some mistakes in arranging the classroom or preparing for the lesson. You might—

  • Drop something on the floor.

  • Place a chair backwards.

  • Display a picture upside down.

  • Start to write something on the chalkboard or on a piece of paper and then erase it or cross it out.

After each mistake say, “I’m sorry; I made a mistake.” Then correct the mistake.

Ask the children if they noticed all the mistakes you made. Point out that everyone makes mistakes.

Sometimes we do things that are wrong

Explain that as we are growing up and learning to choose the right, sometimes we make wrong choices. These are not just mistakes like putting a picture upside down; these are times when we do something that is wrong, something that Heavenly Father and Jesus and our parents do not want us to do. By making wrong choices, we may make ourselves and other people unhappy.

Story

Tell the following story in your own words, using a small toy to illustrate it:

Travis and Matt were having fun playing at Matt’s house. Travis liked Matt’s toys and wished they were his own. Travis decided to borrow some of the toys, and he put them into his pocket without asking Matt.

When Travis played with the toys at home, it wasn’t much fun. His mother asked why he was unhappy. Travis told his mother that he had borrowed Matt’s toys without asking and that now he felt bad about it.

Travis’s mother told him that it is wrong to take something that belongs to someone else. She asked Travis what he should do to correct his wrong choice. Travis wanted to take the toys back, but he was afraid Matt might be angry with him. Travis’s mother said that even though Matt might be angry, returning the toys was the right thing to do. She also told Travis that telling Matt he was sorry would help take away the bad feelings he had for doing something wrong.

Travis took the toys back to Matt. He said he was sorry for taking the toys without asking and promised never to do it again. Matt was happy that Travis brought the toys back. Travis was glad that he told the truth and made things right (adapted from Pat Graham, “Travis Repents,” Friend, Mar. 1987, pp. 40–41).

  • What did Travis do that was wrong?

  • How did Travis feel when he took Matt’s toys?

Explain that when we do something wrong, we feel bad inside. This is one way Heavenly Father helps us know we have done something wrong.

  • What did Travis do to make the bad feelings go away?

  • How did Travis feel when he returned Matt’s toys and said he was sorry?

We should say we are sorry

  • How do you feel when you do something wrong?

  • What can you do to make the bad feelings go away?

Help the children understand that when we know we have done something wrong, we need to admit it. Then we need to say “I’m sorry.” We also need to try to correct what we did wrong and promise that we won’t do it again.

Activity

Have the children stand and do the following activity verse with you:

When I do something wrong (shake finger from side to side),
“I am sorry,” I will say.
I feel so unhappy (pull down corners of mouth with fingers, making a frown)
For what I did today.
I will do better (put hands on hips and nod head up and down);
I’ll try with my might.
I will be happy (smile)
If I do what is right (fold arms and nod head).

We should do our best to correct the wrong

Story

Show the children the Book of Mormon. Tell them that the Book of Mormon tells about a man who did something wrong.

Open the Book of Mormon and tell the story of Alma, as found in Mosiah 27:8–37. Explain that Alma would not listen to his father. He disobeyed Heavenly Father and Jesus. He did many things that were wrong. He told people things that were not true about the Church. Many people believed him and would not listen to the Church leaders.

Explain that Alma changed from doing wrong things to doing right things. He tried to correct the wrong things he had done by teaching the people the truth.

  • How do you think Alma felt when he realized he was doing the wrong things? (See Mosiah 27:29.)

  • How did Alma try to correct the wrong things he had done? (See Mosiah 27:32, 35–36.)

  • How do you think Alma felt when he started teaching the people the truth?

  • When you do something wrong, why should you try to correct it?

Share a simple personal experience about a time when you said you were sorry. Tell the children how you felt and how you tried to correct the wrong thing you had done.

Review the things we need to do when we know we have done something wrong:

  1. 1.

    Admit we did something wrong.

  2. 2.

    Say “I’m sorry.”

  3. 3.

    Promise not to do it again.

  4. 4.

    Do our best to correct what we did wrong.

Explain that all these steps together are called repentance. Heavenly Father and Jesus are happy when we repent of the wrong things we do.

Have the children discuss how they could follow these steps of repentance in the following situations:

  • What should you do if you took something that does not belong to you?

  • What should you do if you said something unkind to someone?

  • What should you do if you did not tell the truth to your parents?

  • What should you do if you pushed someone down?

Testimony

Express your testimony that Heavenly Father and Jesus love us even when we do wrong things. Tell the children that you know they will be happy when they say they are sorry for things they do that are wrong and when they try not to do the wrong things again.

Enrichment Activities

Choose some of these activities to use during the lesson.

  1. 1.

    Help the children sing or say the words to “Repentance” (Children’s Songbook, p. 98). Explain that to repent means to say you are sorry, promise not to do the wrong thing again, and try to correct the wrong thing.

  2. 2.

    Provide each child with a piece of clay or play dough. Show the children how to roll the clay or play dough in a ball and then flatten it. Help them make a smiling face in the clay or play dough to remind them that when they say “I’m sorry” they will feel better. (A play dough recipe can be found on page xv of this manual.)

  3. 3.

    Give each child a piece of paper and a crayon or pencil. Have each child draw a smiling face. Label the picture I can be happy when I say I’m sorry.

  4. 4.

    Sing or say the words to “I Want to Live the Gospel” (Children’s Songbook, p. 148).

Additional Activities for Younger Children

  1. 1.

    “Accidentally” spill a box of crayons or other small objects on the floor. Tell the children that you are sorry you spilled the crayons, and then ask what you should do to make the situation better. As you clean up, tell the children that you will feel better when the floor is neat and clean again. Invite the children to help you clean up.

    Explain that sometimes we do things that make us or other people feel sad. When this happens, we should say “I’m sorry” and try to make things better. Thank the children for helping you clean up, and remind them that they feel happy when they help others.

  2. 2.

    Sing or say the words to “Jesus Said Love Everyone” (Children’s Songbook, p. 61).

  3. 3.

    Have the children say a large word, such as hippopotamus. Tell them that it is sometimes hard to say some words. Explain that it may be hard to say “I’m sorry” when we have done something wrong. Explain that even when the words “I’m sorry” are hard to say, they can help turn sad feelings into better feelings.

  4. 4.

    Tell a short story about two children who are playing together. When one of the children bumps into the other, the first child says, “I’m sorry” and tries to help the hurt one feel better. Include the idea of turning a sad feeling into a happy one. You may want to use the Smiling/Frowning Face figure from lesson 21. Let a child hold the figure and turn it to show the feelings of the children in the story.