by Jenni (with combined input from my mom and sister, who are both in primary presidencies also, and who taught the lessons first)
Objective: to help the children understand the plan of salvation in a meaningful way
In an area training last year, Sister Jean Stevens counseled primary leaders in that region to focus on the plan of salvation. Cheryl’s ward did a 5th Sunday about the plan of salvation and put these large visual aids on the wall in their primary room, and now refer to them during most other sharing time lessons. They based their lesson on a simplified version the Plan of Salvation lesson from Preach my Gospel (leaving out references to paradise/spirit prison and judgment). My sister recently taught a similar lesson in her ward.
Begin with the song I lived in Heaven, sing one verse at a time, stopping to go over the parts of it with the kids.
Place large visual aids on the floor to represent the premortal world, earth, the postmortal spirit world (paradise/spirit prison), and the celestial kingdom (the other kingdoms should be represented also, but might be smaller since they are not the main focus).
Gather some volunteers in the ‘premortal’ area. Explain that we were all there in the counsel in heaven before anyone came to Earth. Ask the primary “who chose to follow Jesus? If you followed Jesus, stand up!” (If anyone does not stand up, explain that everyone who comes to Earth chose to follow Christ at that time.) (My sister said that doing this part was a powerful spiritual moment for her primary.)
Have someone holding a hula hoop up between the premortal world and Earth. Have the volunteers go through in the order that they were born (if you have any parent/child groups in your primary they could be great for this part). As each person goes though the hula hoop representing birth, give them a cape or hat to put on, to represent their body.
Each volunteer next goes through a hula hoop representing death, taking off the cape or hat and leaving it on earth as they go to the “postmortal spirit world” area. Finally each volunteer goes through a hula hoop representing resurrection (putting the cape/hat back on) as they enter the Celestial Kingdom.
If you have a small primary, if it is possible for each child to go through the plan, that would be fantastic. Perhaps using a simplified version (without the cape or hula hoops) would make it possible for all the children to walk through the steps.