Lesson 1: Happiness Comes from Choosing the Right

Primary 2: Choose the Right A, (1995), 1–5


Purpose

To help each child understand that happiness comes from choosing the right.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Matthew 5:6 and 3 Nephi 12:6. See also Doctrine and Covenants 58:27 and Gospel Principles (31110), chapter 4.

  2. 2.

    Make a CTR chart. Attach picture 2-1, Jesus with a Child, to a larger piece of paper or posterboard. Print the letters CTR above the picture and the words I will choose the right underneath the picture. Save this chart for use in future lessons.

  3. 3.

    Talk with each child’s parents to learn a few details about each child to share with the class.

  4. 4.

    Prepare to sing or say the words to “Choose the Right Way” (Children’s Songbook, p. 160. The words to this song are included at the back of the manual.

  5. 5.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A Bible or a Book of Mormon.

    2. b.

      Chalk, chalkboard, and eraser.

    3. c.

      A CTR ring for every child who does not already have one (see “Class Information” in “Helps for the Teacher,” p. vii).

    4. d.

      A copy or tracing of the CTR shield (found at the front of the manual) for each child.

    5. e.

      Crayons and scissors.

    6. f.

      A long piece of yarn for each child.

  6. 6.

    Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities you want to use.

Suggested Lesson Development

Give the opening prayer, expressing your love for Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the children in the class.

Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ Love Us

Attention activity

Tell the children a little about yourself and about your feelings and desires for this year’s Primary class. Introduce each child to the other class members, telling something about the child as you do so.

CTR chart

Display the CTR chart you have made. Tell the children that this year in Primary they will be learning about Jesus Christ, our Savior. One of the most important things they will learn is how much Jesus loves each one of them. Testify that Jesus loves each of the children in your class. Mention each child by name, as in this example: “Jesus loves Stephanie.” Tell the children that Heavenly Father also loves each of them.

Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ Want Us to Be Happy

Teacher presentation

Tell the children that because Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father love each of us so much, they want us to be happy. Share with the children some times when you have felt really happy. (Examples could include getting baptized, sharing with others, doing something fun with your friends, working to achieve a goal, spending enjoyable moments with your family, reading and learning about Jesus, getting married in the temple, or serving a mission.)

Child participation

Let the children talk about times when they are happy. If the children need some prompting, ask questions such as the following:

  • Are you happy when you play with your brothers and sisters?

  • Are you happy when you help your mother or father?

  • Are you happy when you get to do a favorite activity?

  • Are you happy when you come to church?

Choosing the Right Brings Happiness

Story and discussion

Tell the following story in your own words:

James was a boy who was just the right age to be a member of our class. One day he asked his Primary teacher if he could bring his pet to class. His teacher replied, “Choose the right, James. Choose the right.”

  • What do you think James chose to do?

When he asked his Primary teacher if he should bring a friend to church, she said, “Choose the right, James. Always choose the right.”

  • What choice do you think he made?

James had heard his parents say these same words many times: “Choose the right, James. Heavenly Father and Jesus want us always to choose the right.”

  • What does it mean to choose the right?

One day when James came home from school, he found his mother had left a cookie for him and one for his brother. James loved cookies, and he ate his quickly. Then he looked at his brother’s cookie. His brother was not home, and no one was around to say, “Choose the right, James. Always choose the right.”

  • What would you do?

  • What would James do if he chose the right?

James ate his brother’s cookie. When James’s brother came home, he saw that there was no cookie for him. He thought his mother had forgotten to leave him a cookie, and he was very sad. James felt bad because he had eaten his brother’s cookie.

  • Did James choose the right?

  • Was James happy about his choice?

  • What should James do now?

Help the children think of ways that James could correct his wrong choice. Emphasize that we should always try to choose the right, but if we do choose wrong, we should try to correct our wrong choices. When we make wrong choices we will be unhappy, but when we make right choices we will be happy.

Scripture

Tell the children that Jesus has told us that we will be happy when we choose the right. Read aloud Matthew 5:6 or 3 Nephi 12:6 (through righteousness). Explain that to “hunger and thirst after righteousness” means to choose the right. We will be blessed when we choose the right.

CTR Stands for Choose the Right

Chalkboard activity

  • How could your mother mark something that belongs to you without writing your whole name? (She could use your initials.)

Explain that our initials are the beginning letters of our names.

Tell the children what your initials are. Print them on the chalkboard and repeat your name, pointing to each initial at the appropriate time.

  • What are your initials?

Put the children’s initials on the chalkboard and show how they represent their names. Print the initials first and then add the remainder of the names. (If you have a large class, use just a few children’s initials as examples.)

Print CTR vertically on the chalkboard, as shown below. Have the children raise their hands if they can read the letters.

CTR

Read the initials aloud with the entire class. Tell the children that these initials stand for three important words. Complete the words on the chalkboard:

choose the right

Read the words with the children and have them repeat the initials. Then say together what the initials stand for.

Emphasize to the children that when they say “CTR,” they should think of “choose the right.” Tell them that these initials will help them remember to follow Jesus Christ and do the things that will make them happy.

We Can Remember to Choose the Right

CTR chart

Refer to the picture of Jesus Christ on the CTR chart. Tell the children that this year in Primary they will learn about many of the things Jesus did and taught while he was on the earth. Explain that Jesus always chose the right, and he wants us to choose the right so we will be happy and so we can help others be happy. Have the children stand and say together the words on the CTR chart: “I will choose the right.”

Song

Help the children sing or say the words to “Choose the Right Way.” Repeat the song a few times until the children are able to sing or say some of the words on their own.

CTR ring

Pass out the CTR rings to those children who do not already have one (if CTR rings are unavailable, skip to the CTR shield activity and discuss the letters on the shield). Have all the children look at their rings.

  • What do the initials on this ring stand for? (Choose the right.)

Tell the children that their CTR rings can help them remember that Jesus wants them to choose the right.

CTR shield activity

Give each child crayons and a copy of the CTR shield to color. Help each child cut out the shield and make a small hole in the top to thread a piece of yarn through. Tie a knot in the yarn so the child can wear the shield around his or her neck.

Summary

Review discussion

  • What does CTR mean?

  • What does it mean to choose the right?

  • Who loves each of us and wants us to be happy? (Heavenly Father; Jesus Christ.)

  • What do Heavenly Father and Jesus want us to do so we can be happy?

Testimony

Bear your testimony that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love us and want us to be happy. Tell the children that we can find peace and happiness by following Heavenly Father and Jesus and choosing the right.

Compliment the children for choosing the right by coming to Primary, and encourage them to attend each week.

Encourage the children to memorize the words on the CTR chart (“I will choose the right”) during the coming week.

Invite a child to give the closing prayer.

Enrichment Activities

Choose from the following activities those that will work best for the children in your class. You can use them in the lesson itself or as a review or summary. For additional guidance, see “Class Time” in “Helps for the Teacher.”

  1. 1.

    Explain to the children that in Primary this year they will be learning many things about choosing the right.

    Display picture 2-4, The Pre-earth Life; picture 2-24, Calling of the Fishermen; and picture 2-39, The Prophet Joseph Smith. Tell the children that they will learn about some important people who chose the right. Give a brief preview of each picture.

    • Picture 2-4. We chose the right by choosing to come to earth (see lesson 4).

    • Picture 2-24. Jesus’ Apostles chose the right by leaving their fishing to follow him (see lesson 15).

    • Picture 2-39. Joseph Smith chose the right by praying to find the true church (see lesson 20).

  2. 2.

    To help the children get to know each other better, write each child’s name on a piece of paper and put the papers in a container. Let each child choose a name from the container and give clues about the person whose name was drawn until the rest of the class guesses who it is. Clues could include statements such as “This person smiles a lot,” “This person is wearing blue,” or “This person has black hair.”

  3. 3.

    Describe some actions that the children might take. Ask the children to stand up if the action represents a right choice and to sit down if the action represents a wrong choice. Use the following examples or create some of your own:

    • Get up early so you will be ready for church on time.

    • Complain loudly when you don’t get what you want for breakfast.

    • Help your little sister find her lost shoe.

    • Say “hello” to the new child in your Primary class.

    • Stamp your feet noisily as you enter the meetinghouse.

    • Think about Jesus Christ during the sacrament.

    • Listen quietly to the lesson in your Primary class.