Lesson 3: Heavenly Father’s Plan for Us

Primary 1: I Am a Child of God, (2000), 7–9


Purpose

To help each child understand that we lived with Heavenly Father as spirit children before we came to earth and that we can live with him again after this life.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Abraham 3:22–27. See also Gospel Principles (31110), chapter 2.

  2. 2.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A set of scriptures.

    2. b.

      A doll or paper figure.

    3. c.

      Picture 1-1, The World (62196); picture 1-3, Jesus the Christ (Gospel Art Picture Kit 240; 62572); picture 1-5, Family with a Baby (62307); picture 1-6, Family Home Evening (62521); picture 1-7, A Loving Family; picture 1-8, Passing the Sacrament (62021); picture 1-9, Morning Prayer (62310); picture 1-10, Family Prayer (62275); picture 1-11, Boy Being Baptized (62018); picture 1-12, Girl Being Confirmed (62020); picture 1-13, Joseph Smith (Gospel Art Picture Kit 400; 62449).

  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

Put a doll or paper figure on one of the chairs by the children. Ask the children to stand up, turn around, and sit back down.

  • Why didn’t the doll stand up?

  • Why can you stand up?

Talk about the differences between the children and the doll. Help the children understand that they are alive. They each have a spirit inside their body that makes them alive so they can see, hear, stand, move, think, and talk.

We are spirit children of Heavenly Father

Review with the children how we lived with Heavenly Father as his spirit children before we were born on earth. We were happy, and we loved living with Heavenly Father. We did not have the physical bodies we now have, but we had spirits. Explain that a spirit looks like a physical body but does not have flesh and bones.

  • Where did you live before you were born on earth?

Song

Sing “I Am a Child of God” (Children’s Songbook, p. 2) with the children. Remind the children that God is another name for Heavenly Father.

I am a child of God,
And he has sent me here,
Has given me an earthly home
With parents kind and dear.
Lead me, guide me, walk beside me,
Help me find the way.
Teach me all that I must do
To live with him someday.

Activity

Have a child stand by you. Using the child’s name, explain that he or she lived with Heavenly Father before being born on earth, and he or she is a spirit child who is loved by Heavenly Father. Do the same with each child.

Explain that because Heavenly Father loves us, he has a plan for us. Before the earth was created, Heavenly Father called all his children together to explain his plan. All of us, our parents, and our brothers and sisters were there.

Heavenly Father sent us to live on the earth

Display picture 1-1, The World. Explain that the earth is part of Heavenly Father’s plan. Under Heavenly Father’s direction, Jesus Christ created the earth for us. We were sent to be born here and receive a physical body.

Show picture 1-5, Family with a Baby. Let the children talk about the picture. Tell them that we were excited to come to earth and to learn and grow. We came to earth as babies to families who could love us and care for us.

Tell the children that when we came to earth, we were given physical bodies with skin, muscles, blood, and bones. Have the children feel their own arms.

  • Can you feel the bone inside your arm?

  • Can you see and feel your skin?

  • Can you feel your muscles?

Remind the children that our spirits inside our bodies give us life, but we cannot see or touch our spirits. Our physical bodies can be seen and touched. Tell the children it is a great blessing to have a physical body.

Activity

Recite the following verse with the children. Point to each body part as it is mentioned.

I Am Thankful for My Eyes

I am thankful for my eyes,
My ears, my mouth and nose;
Thankful for my hands and arms,
My legs, my feet and toes.

(Adapted from a verse by Lucy Picco.)

Explain that while we are here on earth we grow and learn many things. As we learn to choose the right things to do, we can become more like Heavenly Father and Jesus. This is another part of Heavenly Father’s plan.

Heavenly Father wants us to return to him someday

Express your love for Heavenly Father. Tell the children that someday you want to return to Heavenly Father so you can see him and be with him again. Explain that this is also part of Heavenly Father’s plan. He wants each of us to return to live with him when our earth life is finished. He wants us, our parents, and all our families to be with him again.

Explain that to live with Heavenly Father and Jesus again, we must be baptized and keep all the commandments. Show the set of scriptures. Explain that the scriptures teach us about Heavenly Father and Jesus and what they want us to do.

Using the pictures listed in the “Preparation” section, talk about what Heavenly Father wants us to learn and do here on earth. He wants us to love our families, be unselfish, go to church, take the sacrament, pray morning and night, have family prayer and family home evening, be baptized, be confirmed and receive the Holy Ghost, be married in the temple, learn about prophets, and become like Heavenly Father and Jesus.

Testimony

Express your gratitude for Heavenly Father and for his plan for us. Encourage the children to always do what they know is right so they can someday return to live with Heavenly Father and Jesus.

Enrichment Activities

Choose some of these activities to use during the lesson.

  1. 1.

    Give each child a piece of paper on which you have written I am a child of God, and have each child draw a picture of himself or herself. Let the children show their pictures to the rest of the class. Encourage each child to say something good about himself or herself while showing the picture.

  2. 2.

    Help the children say the following verse and do the actions indicated:

    God’s Creation

    God made the moon (make a circle with hands)
    And winking stars (open and close hands)
    And put them in the sky (reach up).
    He made the sun (make a circle with arms overhead)
    And trees (hold arms straight up)
    And flowers (cup hands)
    And little birds that fly (wave arms).

    (From Fascinating Finger Fun by Eleanor Doan. © 1951. Used by permission.)

  3. 3.

    Write the following questions on separate pieces of paper. Review the lesson by letting each child select a piece of paper. Read the question and let the child answer it. Repeat as necessary to give each child a turn.

    1. a.

      Who is a child of God? (I am; everyone is.)

    2. b.

      Where did we live before we were born on earth? (In heaven with Heavenly Father and Jesus.)

    3. c.

      Why did Heavenly Father ask Jesus to make the earth for us? (So we could have a physical body and learn what we need to do to live with Heavenly Father and Jesus again.)

    4. d.

      What do we need to do to live again with Heavenly Father and Jesus? (Obey the commandments, be unselfish, be baptized, go to the temple, and so on. Let the children show the appropriate pictures as they answer this question.)

    5. e.

      With whom can we live after we finish our life here on earth? (Heavenly Father and Jesus and our families.)

Additional Activities for Younger Children

  1. 1.

    With the approval of your Primary president, invite a father to bring his baby into the classroom. Talk about fathers and how they love their children. Tell the children that they have two fathers who love them: their father here on earth and their Heavenly Father. Before babies are born on earth, they live with Heavenly Father. (Note: Be sensitive to the situations of the children in your class, some of whom may not have fathers in their homes.)

  2. 2.

    Bring one or more pairs of “Daddy shoes” to class. Talk about who wears these big shoes. Let the children compare the size of their own shoes or feet with the big ones. Let each child take a turn walking in the “Daddy shoes.”

  3. 3.

    Sing or say the first two lines of “I Lived in Heaven” (Children’s Songbook, p. 4).

    I lived in heaven a long time ago, it is true;
    Lived there and loved there with people I know. So did you.

    (© 1987 by Janeen Jacobs Brady. Used by permission.)

    • Whom did we live with in heaven? (Heavenly Father and Jesus and everyone.)

  4. 4.

    Help the children do the actions to the following activity verse while you say the words. Repeat as many times as you desire.

    Make a circle with everyone standing, holding hands. Hold hands throughout the activity.

    We all lived together with Heavenly Father (everyone comes close together, bringing hands to the center of the circle).
    He sent us down to earth to live (spread out into a big circle).
    He gave us families to love and teach us (come close together again).
    Our families will help us live with him again (spread out into a big circle again).