To help each child understand that we can choose the right because Heavenly Father gave us agency.
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.
If you want to use enrichment activity 1 from lesson 6 next week (see page 28), prepare a note similar to the following for each child to take home to his or her parents:
Please tell [child’s name] how his [her] first name was chosen so we can talk about it next time in class. Thank you.
If you want to use enrichment activity 2 from lesson 6 next week, prepare a note asking each child’s parents to send a family photograph with their child next week (this can be the same note as above if you are using both activities).
A Bible and a copy of the Doctrine and Covenants.
CTR chart (see lesson 1).
A bowl of small items of different colors, such as candies or shiny rocks. Have enough of each color so each child will have a choice of several colors.
Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities you want to use.
Suggested Lesson Development
Invite a child to give the opening prayer.
Follow up with the children if you encouraged them to do something during the week.
Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ Want Us to Choose for Ourselves
Show the bowl of small items and let each child choose one. Tell the children that they have just made a choice. We must make many choices every day.
What choices have you made today? (Answers might include choosing what to wear, choosing what to eat for breakfast, or choosing what to do with free time.)
Tell the children that making choices is a very important part of life on earth. Some choices are easy and some choices are hard. Our right to choose was given to us when we lived in heaven with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
Remind the children that before we came to earth, Heavenly Father called us to a meeting. See if the children remember from the previous lesson what happened at that meeting. If they do not, quickly review, bringing out the following ideas:
At this meeting Heavenly Father presented a plan to help us become like him. We chose to follow the plan, so we each came to earth and received a physical body. If we choose to keep the commandments while we are on the earth, we will be able to live with Heavenly Father again. Jesus Christ offered to come to earth to show us what we must do to live with Heavenly Father again. Lucifer wanted to come to earth and force everyone to keep the commandments. He did not want to give people any choices. But Jesus wanted to follow Heavenly Father’s plan. He wanted people to be able to choose how they would live.
Explain that Heavenly Father knew it would be best for us to choose for ourselves so we could learn to make right choices. Being able to choose for ourselves is called agency. Have the children say the word agency aloud a couple of times.
Explain that Lucifer (who is also called Satan) and his followers are still fighting Heavenly Father’s plan. They want us to use our agency to choose to follow them instead of following Jesus and doing what is right.
Display the CTR chart.
What did Jesus want to do to help us choose the right? (He wanted to come to earth to teach us what is right so we would be able to choose wisely.)
Point to the words on the CTR chart. Say the words aloud, and then have the children repeat them with you.
Children Can Choose to Do Right
In your own words, tell the story found in Matthew 21:14–16. Explain that some of the chief priests did not believe that Jesus Christ was the Savior, the one Heavenly Father had sent to help them. They watched Jesus closely to try to find him doing something wrong so they could have him killed.
Explain that when Jesus healed the blind and lame people in the temple, the chief priests were angry. When the children began praising Jesus, the priests were even more angry, and they wanted Jesus to stop the children. But instead he asked the priests if they had not read in the scriptures that little children would praise him.
Point out that just like the children in this story, the children in your class can choose to follow and praise Jesus.
Open the Doctrine and Covenants and read aloud part of Doctrine and Covenants 37:4: “Let every man choose for himself.” Explain that in this scripture, every man means all people. We can all choose what we do. Have the children stand and repeat the phrase.
Point to the CTR chart and have the children repeat the words on the chart again.
We Can Choose the Right
Tell the children a story about a child who chose to do what Jesus would want. You may want to use the following story:
Brittany woke up Sunday morning feeling grumpy. She had gone to bed too late and had to get up too early. She had to wait for her turn in the bathroom. Then she couldn’t find one of her shoes. Then she stubbed her toe on a chair. Her big brother was angry with her because he thought she was going to make the whole family late.
At Primary Brittany didn’t sing. She didn’t smile. She didn’t even listen. She wished she weren’t at Primary. She sat on the back row and frowned and played with some things in her pocket.
What choices did Brittany make?
Brittany’s teacher had worked hard to prepare the lesson and knew that Brittany was not listening. After class Brittany’s teacher talked to Brittany alone and asked what the problem was. Brittany started to cry. She wanted to be happy, and she wanted her teacher to be happy too.
Brittany’s teacher asked if she would like to try an experiment. Brittany thought an experiment sounded like fun. Her teacher explained that choosing the right and doing what Jesus wants us to do can help us be happy. Brittany agreed to try to do what Jesus would have her do at Primary next Sunday.
The following Saturday, Brittany’s teacher reminded her about the experiment. Brittany said to herself, “Tomorrow I’m going to do what Jesus wants me to do.”
Sunday morning when Brittany woke up, she was excited to try the experiment. She quickly got ready for church and helped her sister get ready also. When Brittany got to Primary, she was smiling. She sang the opening song and sat reverently during the opening prayer. The boy sitting next to Brittany kept whispering to her, and soon Brittany was whispering back and not listening. Just before it was time to go to class, Brittany looked up and saw the picture of Jesus on the wall. She remembered that she wanted to do what Jesus wanted her to do. Brittany walked quietly to class and sat on the front row. She listened to the lesson and answered the questions her teacher asked her. Brittany felt happy. She was glad she chose the right. She discovered that choosing the right and doing what Jesus wanted her to do made her feel happy.
Why did Brittany feel happy?
When have you felt happy because you chose the right?
Have the children each make a hand into a fist with the thumb pointing out. Tell the children that you are going to describe some choices they might make. If the choice described is something Jesus would have them do, they should point their thumbs up. If the statement describes something Satan would have them do, they should point their thumbs down. Use the following examples or create some of your own:
You choose to come to Primary.
You choose to sing in Primary when the music leader asks everyone to sing.
You choose to keep your eyes open during the prayer.
You choose to bring a friend to church.
You choose to whisper to your friend during the sacrament.
You choose to walk quietly to your classroom.
You choose to laugh when another child stumbles and falls.
You choose to disturb the other children by making noises.
You choose to help the teacher with the activity.
You choose to make fun of someone who answers a question wrong.
You choose to listen quietly when the teacher tells a story.
Lead the children in singing or saying the words to “Choose the Right Way.”
Tell the children how grateful you are that Heavenly Father has given us agency. Express your confidence in the children’s ability to make right choices.
Ask the children to be ready to tell the class next week about a right choice each of them made during the week.
If you have prepared notes for the children concerning next week’s lesson, give each child a note. Explain the notes to the children and tell them to give the notes to their parents.
Invite a child to give the closing prayer.
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.”
Have all the children stand. Choose one child to be the leader, and give him or her a coin or button. Have the leader stand in front of the class with the coin hidden in one of his or her hands. Let the other children in the class guess which hand the coin is in. When everyone has guessed, the leader reveals which hand the coin is in. The children who guessed correctly take one step toward the leader. The others remain where they are. Continue until a child reaches the leader.
Why didn’t all of you guess correctly every time? (You didn’t have any information to help you guess.)
Is guessing a good way to make choices?
Help the children understand that we do not have to guess about our decisions. Jesus has taught us what we should do. If we do what Heavenly Father and Jesus want us to do, we will always make right choices.
Give the children paper and crayons and have them draw pictures of themselves doing things Jesus Christ would have them do in Primary. Examples might be sitting quietly, singing, helping the teacher, or walking quietly.
Help the children sing or say the words to
“Listen, Listen” (Children’s Songbook, p. 107), using the actions indicated:Listen to the still small voice (put hand to ear)!Listen! Listen (put finger to lips)!When you have to make a choice (hold hands out, palms up).He will guide you always (fold arms).
Repeat the song several times to help the children learn the words.