Lesson 10: Prepare Every Needful Thing

"Lesson 10: Prepare Every Needful Thing," Part G: The Teaching the Gospel Course, ()


Purpose

To help class members prepare effective lessons.

Note to the Teacher

Gospel teachers should ask themselves three questions as they prepare lessons:

  1. 1.

    What should happen in the lives of those I teach as a result of this lesson?

  2. 2.

    Which specific principles should be taught?

  3. 3.

    How should these principles be taught?

The first of these questions helps teachers focus the lesson on the needs of those they teach. With this in mind, teachers can decide what to teach. This is an important decision, especially since lessons often contain more material than teachers are able to cover in one class period. In deciding how to teach, teachers should select methods that complement the material, are in accordance with the Spirit, and invite diligent learning.

As you teach this lesson, help class members understand how to prepare lessons efficiently and under the direction of the Spirit. Remember that your preparation for this lesson can serve as an example to class members as they prepare to teach.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Study the section of this book titled “Prepare Every Needful Thing”(pages 96–105).

  2. 2.

    Remind class members to come prepared to develop a plan for a lesson that they will soon teach. Encourage them to bring lesson materials, such as the scriptures and lesson manuals. (This assignment was given at the conclusion of lesson 9.)

  3. 3.

    Bring to class a copy of a current Church-produced lesson manual, such as a Primary manual or a Gospel Doctrine manual, in which the lessons contain purpose statements and suggested teaching methods.

  4. 4.

    Before class, write the following chart on the chalkboard:

Suggested Lesson Development

Personal preparation is essential for us to be able to teach the gospel.

Quotation

Invite a class member to read the statement by Elder Dallin H. Oaks on page 96.

Chalkboard and Teacher Presentation

Direct class members’ attention to the chart that you have written on the chalkboard. Have class members copy the chart in their notebooks.

Explain that these are three important questions that we should ask ourselves as we prepare a lesson.

Explain that during this lesson class members will answer these questions in relation to the lesson materials that they have brought.

1. Decide what should happen in the lives of those we teach as a result of the lesson.

Notebook Activity and Teacher Presentation

Ask class members to refer to the lesson materials that they have brought to class. Have them write the topic of their lesson at the top of the chart in their notebooks. If they are teaching from a block of scripture, have them write the chapter and verses.

Explain that with a topic in mind, we can decide how the lesson should influence those we teach. For example, in teaching a lesson about tithing, a Primary teacher may decide that the children should understand what tithing is and why we pay tithing. In teaching a lesson about the temple, parents may decide that their children should feel a desire to live worthy to be married in the temple. In teaching a lesson about family home evening, an elders quorum president may decide that the lesson should inspire quorum members to hold a meaningful family home evening every week.

Point out that many Church-produced lesson manuals include purpose statements with the lessons. Display the lesson manual that you have brought to class, and show class members the purpose statement in one of the lessons. Explain that we should use these statements as guides as we prepare lessons.

Invite class members to consider the needs of the people they teach. Then ask them the following question:

  • What do you feel should happen in the lives of those you teach as a result of the lesson?

Explain that a teacher’s answer to this question may include what people should understand, feel, desire, or do as a result of a lesson. Then give class members time to ponder the question. Have them write their answers on the chart in their notebooks.

Discussion

After class members have had time to write their answers, invite a few of them to share their responses and their reasons for giving those responses.

Emphasize that as we prepare a lesson, we should consider the needs of those we teach. Guided by the Spirit, we can know how the lesson should influence those we teach. This knowledge will help us decide what to teach and how to teach it.

2. Decide what to teach in the lesson.

Teacher Presentation

Point out that we often have more material than we are able to teach in the time we are given. This is true whether we teach from manuals with prepared lessons or from other resources, such as Ensign articles or general conference addresses. In such cases, we should prayerfully select the material that will be most helpful for those we teach.

Emphasize that when we teach the gospel, we should do more than simply present information. What matters most is not the amount of material covered but the influence the lesson has on those we teach.

Chalkboard and Discussion

  • What can we do that will help us decide which specific points to teach? (Without erasing the chart, write class members’ responses on the chalkboard. Note that some important points are listed below. Mention these ideas if class members do not mention them.)

    1. a.

      Prayerfully study the content of the lesson.

    2. b.

      Make a list of key principles covered in the lesson.

    3. c.

      Always keep in mind the needs and backgrounds of those you teach.

    4. d.

      Follow the guidance of the Spirit.

Encourage class members to begin preparing for a lesson at least a week before they teach it. This will give them time to ponder and pray about the material, understand it, and develop appealing ways to present it.

Notebook Activity

Have class members refer again to the lesson materials that they have brought to class. Encourage them to continue to consider the needs of those they teach as they answer the following question. Also encourage them to consider what the people they teach are prepared to receive.

  • In this lesson, what are the most important ideas for the people you teach?

Give class members time to ponder this question. Have them write their answers on the chart in their notebooks under “Which specific principles should be taught?”

Discussion

After class members have had time to write their answers, invite a few of them to share their responses and their reasons for giving those responses.

3. Decide how to teach the lesson.

Discussion

Explain that after we have decided what to teach, we should decide how to teach it. This includes selecting methods that will help people understand the principles we teach.

  • What are some methods we can use to teach the gospel? (Help class members recall the methods that were demonstrated in lessons 8 and 9. Also remind them of the list of methods on page 158 of this book.)

Remind class members that teaching methods should lift those we teach, invite diligent learning, and help class members understand and apply gospel principles.

Notebook Activity

Have class members look again at the chart in their notebooks. Ask them to consider one principle they have written under “Which specific principles should be taught?” Give them a few minutes to think of a method they might use to teach that principle and to include that method in their chart.

Display the lesson manual that you have brought to class. Point out that some lesson manuals include suggestions on how to teach certain principles. Teachers may use these suggestions, or they may think of their own ideas based on the needs of those they teach.

After class members have had time to write in their notebooks, invite a few of them to share their ideas.

Conclusion

Quotation

Read the following statement by President David O. McKay:

“There are three things which must guide all teachers: First, get into the subject … ; second, get that subject into you; third, try to lead [those you teach] to get the subject into them—not pouring it into them, but leading them to see what you see, to know what you know, to feel what you feel” (Gospel Ideals [1953], 424).

Encourage class members to apply the principles discussed in this lesson. Assure them that as they do so prayerfully, they will be able to plan lessons that will help others learn gospel doctrines and apply them in their lives.

Testimony

Bear testimony as prompted by the Spirit.

Assignments

Encourage class members to:

  1. 1.

    Complete the lesson preparation that they have begun in class. Write in their notebooks about their experience with preparing and teaching the lesson.

  2. 2.

    Review the principles taught in this lesson by studying the section of this book titled “Prepare Every Needful Thing”(pages 96–105).

  3. 3.

    Prepare for next week’s lesson by studying Matthew 7:1–5. Consider if there is anything they are doing to contribute to the challenges they face as teachers. Think about changes they might make. As they do so, they should ponder the Lord’s counsel in Ether 12:27, 37 about the blessings that can come as we humbly recognize our weaknesses.