Lesson 39: Showing Love for Our Parents

Primary 3, (1994), 191–96


Purpose

To help the children show love for their fathers and mothers by being obedient and helpful.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Exodus 20:12 and Mormon 8:1.

  2. 2.

    Be prepared to have the class sing “A Happy Family” (Children’s Songbook, p. 198); the words are included at the back of this manual.

  3. 3.

    Be sensitive to those children who do not have both parents in the home or whose parents have other unusual circumstances.

  4. 4.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A Book of Mormon.

    2. b.

      A small beanbag or ball.

    3. c.

      A copy of the family tree for each child (see the sample included at the end of this lesson).

    4. d.

      Picture 3-34, Mormon Abridging the Plates (62520; Gospel Art Picture Kit 306); picture 3-35, Moroni Hides the Plates in the Hill Cumorah (62462; Gospel Art Picture Kit 320); and picture 3-5, Adam and Eve Teaching Their Children.

  5. 5.

    Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities that you will be using.

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 Gave Our Parents Responsibility for Us

Attention activity

Display picture 3-5, Adam and Eve Teaching Their Children.

  • Who is this a picture of? (Adam, Eve, and their children.)

  • What did Heavenly Father want Adam and Eve to teach their children? (The gospel. Remind the children that they discussed this recently in class; see lesson 35.)

Explain that Heavenly Father gave our parents children to care for and to love until they return to him someday. He wants us all to learn how to be worthy to live with him after this life. Heavenly Father expects parents to teach their children the commandments and to take care of their children’s needs. This is a great responsibility for our parents.

Give to each child a copy of the family tree. Have or help each child write the names or draw the faces of his parents on the trunk of the tree and the first names or faces of himself and any brothers and sisters in the branches.

Discussion

  • Why did Heavenly Father give us parents? (To love and take care of us and to teach us his commandments.)

Explain that Heavenly Father knows that children can show love to their parents. Heavenly Father told us we should do this (see Exodus 20:12).

There are many ways to show love for our parents.

We Show Love for Our Parents by Being Helpful

Story

Explain to the class that being helpful is one way to show love for parents. Retell the following story in your own words:

Emma could tell Mother was not feeling well. Mother looked tired and often sat down to rest. Even Mother’s voice sounded tired when she spoke to David and John, Emma’s younger brothers. Emma thought of all the things her mother did for her and wished she could help Mother feel better.

  • What are some things Emma could do to help her mother?

Emma sat down with her younger brothers and played with them. She helped them play quietly and happily. Then she helped them lie down to rest so that Mother could take a nap. Later Emma helped them put their toys away.

When Mother finished preparing lunch, Emma helped David and John wash their hands and get ready for prayer. Mother smiled at Emma and gave her a big hug.

“Thank you for being such a wonderful help today,” Mother whispered in Emma’s ear.

Discussion

  • How did Emma show her love for her mother?

  • How do you think Emma felt after helping her mother?

  • How do you think her mother felt?

Activity

Toss the beanbag to each child and ask one of the following questions. After the child answers, have him or her toss the beanbag back to you. Give each child the opportunity to answer both questions.

  • What do my mother and father do to show me their love?

  • What can I do to show love for my mother or father?

We Show Love for Our Parents by Being Obedient

Discussion

Explain that obedience is another important way we can show love for our parents.

Story

Tell in your own words the following story about Annand and his father:

At last Annand was put in charge of the goats. Finally he was old enough to stay with the goats as they grazed on the mountain. Annand was eight years old and had eagerly waited for the responsibility of taking care of the goat herd.

Annand thought of how each morning he and his dog, Numie, would gather the goats together and follow the other herders as they took the village goats up the mountain trail to the high grass. In the evening his father came to the mountain and helped Annand and Numie drive the goats home.

His father had said, “Never leave the mountain trail, Annand. If you lose a goat, call to him, but never leave the trail. The mountain is rugged and very dangerous. My son, you must do what I say. Never leave the mountain trail.”

Day after day Annand’s new responsibility became easier, and he began to love the hours he spent on the mountain.

One afternoon, Annand realized that his father was late in coming to help him. He decided that he would round up the goats and start down the trail to meet his father. With the help of Numie, he soon had the goats in a circle. He was upset to find that there were three goats missing—Summa, the old she goat, and her two kids. What was he going to do? Annand decided that Summa had probably gone higher up the trail where they had taken her many times before. He must go after her.

Leaving Numie to watch the other goats, he started higher up the mountain trail. Soon he spotted Summa and her small ones far off the mountain trail in a little patch of grass. There were many bushes and rocks, and Annand could not see what was between him and Summa. Annand knew he must stay on the path, so he called, but Summa walked farther away.

It began to get dark, and soon Annand could not see the three goats at all. He knew that something had to be done, so he decided to go after them. Surely he could get them and come back to the trail.

As he began to leave the trail, he remembered what his father had said, “Annand, you must never leave the mountain trail.”

Annand knew he must obey his father, so he sat down and once again began to call for Summa. Suddenly, he heard a rustle in the grass. He looked up to see the she goat and her two little ones. They had come to him after all.

Annand herded them back down the trail, where he met his father coming after him. Together they took the goats home with Numie in the lead.

The next day Annand took his father back to the place where he had waited for Summa. Annand’s father took him around the nearby brush and showed him a steep ledge. Annand might have fallen off the ledge had he gone after Summa. Annand was thankful in his heart that he had obeyed and honored his father.

Discussion

  • How do you think Annand felt about his father? (He loved him.)

  • How did Annand show love for his father? (He obeyed him by not leaving the trail.)

  • How did obeying his father help Annand? (He stayed on the trail and was safe.)

Explain that sometimes we can’t understand why our parents tell us to do certain things. Righteous parents love their children and want what is best for them. Children should obey their parents and do what they ask them to do. When we obey our parents, we are showing our love for them.

Song

Sing or say the words to “A Happy Family.”

Moroni Showed Love for His Father, Mormon

Scripture story and pictures

Tell the children that the Book of Mormon has several stories about men who showed love for their parents by being obedient and helpful. One story was about the prophet Moroni.

Display picture 3-35, Moroni Hides the Plates in the Hill Cumorah. Ask the children what they know about the picture. Tell them that Moroni buried the gold plates. Years later, he returned as an angel to Joseph Smith to show him where they were. Moroni’s father was the prophet Mormon. Next to the picture of Moroni, display picture 3-34, Mormon Abridging the Plates.

Explain that Mormon was chosen by Heavenly Father to gather the histories together and record them on the plates. He had always shown his love for Heavenly Father by doing whatever he was asked to do. He taught his son, Moroni, to do the same. Mormon loved Moroni and wanted him to be happy. He knew that loving and obeying Heavenly Father would help Moroni to be happy.

Even after Moroni was a man, Mormon continued to teach his son to love Heavenly Father. Moroni loved his father and wanted to follow his example.

Because of the great love he had for his father, Moroni obeyed his father’s teachings. He wrote down what his father taught him so that all the world would know the teachings of his father. Mormon died before the gold plates were finished, so Moroni took the record and finished it.

Scripture and discussion

Read Mormon 8:1 to the class.

  • Why did Moroni obey Mormon? (Because he loved him.)

  • How did Moroni show love for his father? (By being obedient and helpful.)

Summary

Discussion

  • Why did Heavenly Father give us parents? (To love us, teach us the commandments, and take care of us.)

  • How can we show our parents that we love them? (By being obedient and helpful.)

  • In what ways were the stories of Annand, Emma, and Moroni alike? (In all these stories, the characters showed love for their parents by being obedient and helpful.)

Teacher testimony

Bear your testimony about the importance of parents and the blessings that can come when we show love for them. Invite the children to choose one way in which they could show their love for their parents during the next week.

Invite a child to give the closing prayer.

Enrichment Activities

Choose from the following activities those that will work best for your children. 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.

    Sing as a class “Families Can Be Together Forever” (Children’s Songbook, p. 188); the words are included at the back of this manual.

  2. 2.

    Have the children draw a picture of how they could show love for their parents.

  3. 3.

    Play “Teacher, May I” with the children. Have them all stand in a line facing you. Make statements such as “(child’s name), help your mother do the dishes.” The child must say, “Teacher, may I help my mother with the dishes?” or something similar. If the child says this, you say, “Take one giant step forward,” and the child steps towards you. If the child steps forward without first asking the question, then he must take a step backward, or away from you. The first child able to touch your hand wins.