1986 Menu: Church Curriculum for Youth


The Church is worldwide, and a new school year for youth begins somewhere in the world almost every month of the year. In the Church, however, we all begin a new year of study starting in January.

When the new year begins, many of you will be advancing to new classes, and most of you will be introduced to new courses of study. We refer to these courses of study as curriculum.

I wonder how many of you know how carefully these courses are planned to give you a complete and well-balanced understanding of the gospel. Twenty-two courses of study are designed specifically for youth. These lessons are taught by devoted teachers in Sunday School, Aaronic Priesthood, Young Women, and Seminary. Each plays an important part in helping you enlarge your understanding of the gospel. Just as you increase your knowledge in school, you need to grow also in learning of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This growth requires your attendance at the various Church meetings and classes, and your attention and effort to make the most of your opportunity to learn.

We might compare the Church courses of study to a well-balanced diet. If we only eat one meal a day or only part of what is on our plate, we will probably miss some valuable and essential nutrients.

Those who attend classes and assist their teachers and fellow students by active, meaningful participation and who complete out-of-class assignments will be greatly blessed. For example, you will have studied and discussed in some of your classes every principle you will be called upon to teach as a missionary. You will have learned to study the standard works and will have learned how to use scripture study tools. You will then study each book of the scriptures vigorously in your seminary classes. You will have learned about modern prophets and their messages to youth. Young men will have had many opportunities to learn about the duties and blessings of the priesthood, and young women will have become better prepared to understand and fulfill their vital roles. You will learn about the plan of salvation and how to apply the gospel in making right decisions to avoid pitfalls that lead to unhappiness.

Church magazines will help you keep informed with messages from Church leaders, articles on current issues, and inspirational incidents from people learning to make right decisions. We are blessed to have the New Era designed especially for the youth of the Church.

Curriculum materials that the Church has prepared for you are summarized in the chart that follows.

Youth Curriculum

Curriculum materials prepared for youth provide an intensive study of the gospel of Jesus Christ. In addition to the weekly experiences in Sunday School and Young Women and Aaronic Priesthood meetings, the youth are daily guided through a vigorous, four-year study of the standard works in Seminary.

In Sunday School, youth are further prepared for seminary by learning how to use the scripture study tools. They also learn of the lives of latter-day prophets. Courses 15–17 teach the doctrines of salvation and give an overview of the plan of life.

Young Women and Aaronic Priesthood courses emphasize priesthood duties, service, virtue, and dating, and they help prepare youth for missions and temple marriage.

These are the major areas of emphasis in the curriculum for each age group:

12–13 YEARS OLD

  • Loving God and his commandments

  • Major scripture characters

  • Scripture study aids

  • Service

  • Priesthood duties

  • Combating worldly influences

  • Moral cleanliness

  • Social skills

14–15 YEARS OLD

  • Faith in Jesus Christ

  • Plan of salvation

  • Basic gospel doctrines

  • Scriptures

  • Growing spiritually

  • Teachings of latter-day prophets

  • Strengthening one’s family

  • Preparing for dating

16–17 YEARS OLD

  • Loving the Savior

  • Plan of salvation

  • Developing spiritually

  • Scriptures

  • Priesthood duties

  • Planning for the future

  • Preparing to be a missionary

  • Preparing for temple marriage

  • Physical, social, and emotional health

  • Teaching skills

[photo] Photo by Grant Heaton