Archive | July 2012

Sharing Time August 2012- Weeks 3 and 4: I should do things on the Sabbath that will help me stay close to Heavenly Father.

Thoughts:  I love the idea of Sabbath observance.  I love the idea of taking a break from the normal world and stepping back and creating space for God.  But in all reality with kids and teaching primary normally I need 6 days to recover from Sunday 🙂

I really love the idea of emphasizing that we are so busy that we often miss the beauty that God had created for us on Earth.  In my house we try to talk about appreciating beauty on Sunday.  Beautiful books, beautiful conversations with family members, beautiful art, and beautiful time together.  We also eat dessert on Sunday.  I try to make sabbath not something to dread but something to create, to appreciate, and to worship.


Identify Doctrine:  I want to tell the children how other religions celebrate the sabbath on different days.  And even in our church if you live in Dubai (the Muslim Sabbath is on Friday) that you will go to church on Friday.  If you live in Israel  you would go to church on Saturday.  In Hong Kong they have church every day because so many people have to work and Jesus wants as many people as possible to come to church and to take the sacrament and to see their friends at church.

I wanted to show a map and say that you could actually go to church 4 times a week.  Start in Hong Kong on Thursday, Dubai on Friday, Israel on Saturday, and Europe on Sunday.   My father in law actually does part of this some weeks.  His travel is crazy.  He says sometimes he has a 5 day weekend 🙂

But that as Christians we celebrate the sabbath on sunday because Jesus raised from the dead on Sunday.  Jewish people celebrate it on Saturday because that was the day God finished creating the earth.  And muslims celebrate the ability to gather for prayer on friday.


Encourage Understanding:  Have the children think about what they do on a typical Sunday.  Ask how it is different from what they normally do on every other week day.  It is important to also let children express frustration with NOT being able to do some of their favorite activities.  I am a big believer in allowing children to hold opinions and to have a safe place for them to express their feelings.  Even as an adult sometimes I really wish I could just treat Sunday like Saturday and get so much done.  It is also important to consider that small children do not have the autonomy to choose a lot of their sabbath activities.

Scripture Activity: What did Jesus do on the Sabbath?

Jesus attended Synagogue and Healed on the Sabbath

Matthew 12:9-13: “Now when Jesus had departed from there, He went into their synagogue. {10} And behold, there was a man who had a withered hand. And they asked Him, saying, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”; that they might accuse Him. . . .{13} Then He said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he stretched it out, and it was restored as whole as the other.”

In essence, Jesus went to Church and He visited the sick. Jesus healed on the Sabbath. There are seven (7) healings recorded in the New Testament of Jesus Healing on the Sabbath. (Request our free article: “Jesus Performed Seven Sabbath Miracles”.)

Following Jesus’ example, we can go to church and keep the Sabbath. We may not be able to heal people as Jesus did on the Sabbath BUT we can pray for their healing and we can visit the sick.

Jesus Taught on the Sabbath 

Mark 1:21: Jesus and His disciples “went into Capernaum; and straightway on the Sabbath day Jesus entered into the synagogue, and taught.”
On the Sabbath Jesus taught God’s way of life to others. The greatest evangelism that we can do is to teach our children and grandchildren God’s way of life.


We are faced with a question in the Church today of: Where are our Children?
Many have quit attending Church and are not keeping the Sabbath. What can we do? We can set the right example, encourage them and pray for them.

Jesus kept God’s Law

Matthew 12:1: “At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. And His disciples were hungry, and began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.”
Obviously, Jesus and His disciples harvested a small handful of grain and ate on the Sabbath. This was permitted by God Law (Leviticus 23:22, Deuteronomy 23:24-25, Hebrews 4:15 ). Humorously we can conclude that we can eat on the Sabbath.

Do Good on the Sabbath

Matthew 12:11-12: Jesus “said to them, “What man is there among you who has one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out? {12} “Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.””
It is lawful to do good and help an animal or a man on the Sabbath. Luke 6:9: “Jesus said to them, “I will ask you one thing: Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to destroy?”

Jesus is saying that we can do good on the Sabbath and to save a life. We then could visit someone who is sick and prepare a meal for them.

Activity:  Bring in things that are beautiful and talk to the children about how God created them for us to enjoy.  And how we can use the sabbath to find beauty in our lives, to create beauty, and to create beauty and kindness.


Sharing Time 2012: Week 2: I should read, listen to, and look at things that are pleasing to Heavenly Father.

Thoughts:  I wanted to use the “Good, Better, Best” talk from Elder Oaks.  I like his approach that there are many good things and we have to choose.  I think that primary is great time to teach practical life skills along with spiritual ones.

The advent of technology and especially technology that is easy for very small kids to use, think iPad, has changed the way children grow up.  I think moderation delegated by  parents is great, but we also have to teach children to deal with pressures and social, technological time management issues in addition to dangers that have traditionally been addressed.


Identify the doctrine:  Heavenly Father wants us to fill our minds with wonderful things.  And because God loves you so much the whole earth is filled with amazing things to learn.  Sometimes we have to use our minds and choose between activities.  I want to show a scale and how it needs to be balanced.  I think sometimes we get out of balance and that is not good.

Heavenly Father wants us to have fun and be happy.  We have to decide how to put first things first, but that is hard. But luckily we get lots of time to practice and everyday is new and we get to practice again.  And eventually we get really good at it, but not even I am perfect at it.

Encourage understanding:

I wanted to draw a large circle on the board that will turn into a pie chart.  On one of the sides I want the kids to list what a typical day looks like.  Then roughly draw out the parts of the day on the pie chart.  So that they can see how much of their day they actually get to pick.

Application: I wanted to show three foods, one that is good, one that is better, and one that is best.  And explain that we probably wouldn’t want to eat the best (some green veggie) all the time, but when we eat all three we get lots of different flavors and our bodies get good nutrition.  Just like how we use our time, it might not be fun to do the hard things but when we balance we can be happy and taste all the wonderful beautiful things that God wanted us to see.

I am going to do

spinach, Milk , and Chocolate and blend them up and let the kids have a treat.  Since I know all the kids food allergies.

Sharing Time August 2012- Week 1: Having good friends will help me choose the right.

Jessica F.


Thoughts:  I really like the idea of talking about friendship.  Friends can be so influential.  I personally like the idea of teaching my children that you can tell a good friend because you want to be better together.  I think that this also applies to marriage advice that I have heard, but that I see it as important for friends and marriage also.

I think that if we teach children that relationships that we get to choose and build and grow are based off becoming better together.  And not that we are perfect or that we leave a friend over once small instance of human failing.  But that we are wishing to move in the same general direction in life will lead to happier relationships with friends and with other relationships in the future.


Encourage understanding:

I like the story in the sharing time outline.  I like the boys were still friends and that they were willing to work with each other to make better choices.

Tell the following story: “Two boys found a worn-out pair of shoes by the road. In the distance they could see a man working in a field. One of the boys suggested that they hide the shoes and then watch the man’s reaction.” Ask the children to share what they would say to this boy. Then tell the rest of the story: “The other boy suggested that instead of hiding the shoes, they should put a silver coin in each one, and that’s what they did. Soon the man returned. When he found the coins, he was so overwhelmed with gratitude that he knelt down and offered a

Identify the doctrine (seeing an object lesson): Show the children a bowl filled with fruit and a bowl filled with dirt. Ask the children which would be good to eat and why. Explain that Heavenly Father wants us to fill our minds with things that are good for us rather than things that are harmful. Invite them to say, “I should read,

prayer of thanks. He spoke of his wife, who was sick, and his children, who had no food, and he asked the Lord to bless whoever had helped him. The boys felt something warm in their hearts and were thankful they had chosen the right” (see Gordon B. Hinckley, in Conference Report, Apr. 1993, 71; or Ensign, May 1993, 54). Invite several children to share times when good friends have helped them choose the right


I wanted to have the children role play but in a different fashion.  I want children to think about if they were the friend who made the wrong choice, how would they want their friend to react, and to treat them?

I think it is important for children especially who have had the benefit of religious upbringing to think about what it would be like to make a mistake since that is not a thought experiment that is done a lot, and is a great exercise in empathy.


August 2012 Sharing Time – I Choose to Fill My Life with Things That Invite the Spirit

Jessica F.

I am moving overseas in 6 days.  I am posting the ideas I have for the whole month of August since I am not sure if I will have reliable internet.  I think it might take a bit of time to set it all up.  I will post again weekly  in September unless the monthly format is better, but I don’t wan to get behind so I am posting them all before I go.

Sharing Time 2012- July Week 4- Honesty is telling the truth regardless of the consequences.

Jessica F.

Thoughts:  I have one daughter who really liked to lie.  I have a degree in child development, and I know it is a stage, but it in all honesty is really annoying and we want her to stop since it takes extra work on our part to figure out the truth.

One this that really helped her was to explain that we her parents were not in charge of her.  That she was in charge of herself.  And that our job and the other adults that loved her- was to help her be really good at being in charge of herself.  This seemed to flick a light on her head.

I think that children often lie because they feel powerless and try to avoid the consequences for their actions, when really we should be teaching them that we are here to help them make better choices and to practice making good choices.

I also think that it is not the best idea to tell kids that if they tell the truth that nothing bad will happen, or that they will always be happy.  A lot of people tell the truth and are not respected or appreciated for it.  I prefer to teach my kids truth and about integrity leave it at that or explain briefly depending on age.



Play a game: Have a set of pictures that show something that we understand takes practice.  My list will look like this: ( trying to get the likes of the kids in primary)

Swimming, Piano, Soccer, Dance, Skiing, Running, and so on….

I want to play the game of how does someone get good at these activities?  What do they do? PRACTICE

What would we call it if one of the people in these pictures decided to not practice but tell their coach that they did practice? What would happen to that person’s performance?  And for on…

Encourage Understanding:

Show pictures that show a person doing things that we would do in everyday life.  For example:  A child studying, a person driving, a person cooking, taking a test, helping another person.

How do we become good at these activities?  We practice.  And when we mess up we tell the truth and we try again better the next time.  And it might take a lot of practice, but eventually we get better a little bit at a time.  And even when we mess up you are still special and important, and your parents love you, and your teachers love you, and Jesus Loves you perfectly.





Sharing Time- July Week 3: Reverence is deep respect and love toward God.

Jessica F.


Thoughts:  In my experience in primary too often the lesson on reverence turns into something that is not reverence, but obedience to the rules of the primary.  I do think that sitting still is a great gift, but often I think that we teach primary in an antiquated way.  We teach primary like we teach school, and I think that we can do better.  I want to focus on reverence being a love the stillness (not silence). In a world that is so busy and loud we should teach ourselves and our children to like the stillness of the world, and provide them with opportunities to find that peace, and there they will ponder the love of God.


Identify Doctrine:  I want to use the following scriptures

  1. “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”–Matthew 11:28
  2. “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake..”–Psalms 23:1-3
  3. “The whole earth is at rest, and is quiet: they break forth into singing.”–Isaiah 14:7
  4. He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. — Mark 4:39

Encourage Understanding: As a group I want to discuss with the kids what the scriptures mean.  I want to do this by first reading them out loud and playing a drawing game.  I want to take each scripture and pick children at random to help me draw the picture so that they can bring to life the scripture, and to focus on how it would feel to be still.

Activity: Have the children play freeze dancing.  Have the pianist play music and when it stops have the kids stop dancing and freeze.  During the freezing portion say a quick verse about how much they are loved by God.  This I was planning on taking from the scripts and General Conference talks.  Have them focus on how it feels different to be still and how it feels to move.  Explain how it is important to use our bodies and be active and that it is also important to be still and feel how much God loves them personally.