Lesson 34

Always Tell the Truth

“Lesson 34: Always Tell the Truth,” Primary 2: Choose the Right A (1995), 181–86


To strengthen each child’s desire to tell the truth, even when it is not easy.


  1. Prayerfully study Mark 14:53–65 and Articles of Faith 1:13. See also Gospel Principles (31110), chapter 31.

  2. Prepare to sing or say the words to “To Show I Choose the Right” (sung to the tune of “If You’re Happy,” Children’s Songbook, p. 266).

  3. Materials needed:

    1. A Bible.

    2. A bottle that the children can spin, such as a soft-drink bottle.

    3. CTR chart (see lesson 1).

    4. Picture 2-56, The Trial of Jesus.

  4. Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities you want to use.

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.

We Can Tell the Truth

Attention activity

Tell the following story in your own words:

One day Ann-Marie went fishing with her grandpa. Ann-Marie had a good time and was especially happy when she caught a fish.

When Ann-Marie got home, she went to see her friend Danny. He invited her inside and took her into the kitchen, where he showed her a fish that he had caught. Danny’s fish was much bigger than the fish Ann-Marie had caught.

Ann-Marie was happy for Danny, but she also felt disappointed. Compared to Danny’s fish, her fish was very small. She didn’t want Danny to know how bad she felt, so she told him that she went fishing with her grandpa and caught a fish so big that she and her grandpa had to use a net to help pull it in. Ann-Marie told Danny that her fish was much bigger than his.


  • What did Ann-Marie do that was wrong?

  • What should Ann-Marie have done?

  • What does it mean to tell the truth?

Explain that telling the truth is part of being honest. When we tell the truth, we tell about things exactly as they happened.

  • Why is it important to tell the truth?

You may want to ask the children to tell about times when they have told the truth.

Article of faith

Remind the children that the Articles of Faith are statements of what Church members believe. Tell the children that part of the thirteenth article of faith says, “We believe in being honest [and] true.” Have them repeat the phrase a few times.

Jesus Christ Told the Truth

Scripture story

Display picture 2-56, The Trial of Jesus. Leave the picture up for the rest of the lesson. Tell the children that Jesus Christ always told the truth, and tell the story found in Mark 14:53–65.

Explain that the soldiers took Jesus to the home of the Jewish high priest, where the Jewish leaders asked him many questions. Read aloud from Mark 14:61 one of the questions they asked him: “Art thou the Christ?”

Explain that Jesus knew that if he said he was the Christ, the special Son of Heavenly Father, the leaders would not let him go. Read aloud from Mark 14:62 what Jesus said when he answered the high priest: “And Jesus said, I am.” Point out that Jesus always told the truth, even when his life was in danger.

Explain that Jesus wants us to tell the truth always, even when it is hard to do so.

CTR chart

Point to the CTR chart and have the children repeat the words on it. Then have the children repeat after you, “I will follow Jesus Christ and tell the truth.”


Help the children sing or say the words to “To Show I Choose the Right.”

To show I choose the right, I tell the truth.

To show I choose the right, I tell the truth.

I know the Savior’s way,

And it shows in what I say.

To show I choose the right, I tell the truth.

Sing or say the words a few times to help the children learn them.

We Can Tell the Truth Even When It Is Not Easy


Point out that it is not always easy to tell the truth. Sometimes it is easier for us to say something that is not true or to not say anything at all.

  • Why is it sometimes hard to tell the truth? (Answers may include because we don’t want to make someone angry or because we might be punished.)


Tell a story about a child who did not tell the truth and felt sorry about it. You may want to use the following story:

JoAnne had accidentally broken her mother’s sewing scissors. She had hidden them in a drawer so her mother wouldn’t know who had broken them. JoAnne’s mother was looking for the scissors, and she asked if anyone had seen them. JoAnne told her mother that she had not seen the scissors.

JoAnne felt bad after she said that. She knew she had done wrong by playing with the scissors when she wasn’t supposed to, and now she had done a second wrong thing by lying about it. JoAnne felt sick.

When JoAnne came to family prayer, she quickly closed her eyes. She didn’t want to look at her mother. As JoAnne’s father said the prayer, JoAnne heard him say, “Give us the courage to do what is right, that we might have peace of mind and joy forever.” JoAnne knew that to be happy again she needed to tell her mother the truth about the scissors.

JoAnne brought the broken scissors to her mother and told her mother the truth. She was sorry that she had broken the scissors and lied, and she wanted to do the right thing. (Adapted from Margery Cannon, “A Miss and a Mistake,” Children’s Friend, Mar. 1962, p. 14.)


  • Did JoAnne tell the truth when her mother first asked her about the scissors?

  • How did JoAnne feel when she did not tell the truth?

  • How do you think JoAnne felt when she did tell her mother the truth?

  • Was it easy for JoAnne to tell the truth?

Explain that even though it was hard for JoAnne to tell the truth because she was afraid she would be punished for breaking the scissors, she was happier when she told the truth.


Play the game “Tell the Truth” with the children. Have the children sit in a circle, and place the bottle on the floor in the center of the circle. Explain that you will spin the bottle, and the child it points to will have a chance to answer a question about telling the truth. After answering, the child will spin the bottle to choose the next person. (If the bottle points to a child who has already answered a question, have the child spin it again.)

Use the following situations and questions for the game, or create some situations more appropriate for the children in your class (if your class is large, you may need to add more situations):

  1. You are playing in your home and you accidentally break a lamp.

    • What should you do?

  2. Your father asks you to hurry to the store and buy something he needs. He asks you not to stop and play on the way. As you pass your neighbor’s house, she gives you some letters to mail for her. On the way home from the store, you stop to see a friend’s new bicycle. Suddenly you remember that your father is waiting, and you hurry home. Your father is upset, and you want to tell him that you are late because you mailed some letters for the neighbor.

    • What should you say?

  3. You see a plate of cookies on the table. They look so good that you take one for yourself and give one to your little brother. When your mother comes to take the cookies to her friend, she sees your brother eating a cookie and starts to scold him.

    • What should you do?

  4. You take one of your little sister’s toys away from her, and she starts to cry. When you hear your grandmother coming, you quickly give the toy back, but your little sister will not stop crying. Your grandmother asks you why your sister is crying.

    • What should you say?

  5. You and your friends are playing ball in front of a neighbor’s house. You kick the ball, and it knocks over and breaks a flowerpot by your neighbor’s door.

    • What should you do?



Bear your testimony about the importance of being truthful, even when it is hard. Remind the children that Jesus Christ always told the truth and that he wants us to always tell the truth. You may want to tell about a time when you were glad you told the truth, even though it was hard for you to do so.

Remind the children that they should always try to choose the right. When they tell the truth, they are choosing the right.

Encourage the children to tell their families about what they learned in Primary today.

Invite a child to give the closing prayer. Suggest that the child ask Heavenly Father to help each class member tell the truth, even when it is not easy.

Enrichment Activities

Choose from the following activities those that will work best for the children in your class. 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. Sing or say the words to “Dare to Do Right” (Children’s Songbook, p. 158), “Choose the Right Way” (Children’s Songbook, p. 160), or “I Believe in Being Honest” (Children’s Songbook, p. 149). The words to “Dare to Do Right” and “Choose the Right Way” are included at the back of the manual.

    I Believe in Being Honest

    I believe in being honest;

    I believe in being true,

    That honesty should start with me

    In all I say, in all I do.

    I’ll form good habits in my youth,

    To keep my word, to tell the truth,

    To speak up in defending right

    And keep my name and honor bright.

    I believe in being honest;

    I believe in being true,

    That honesty should start with me

    In all I say, in all I do.

  2. Ask a child to come to the front of the class and hold up both hands. Loosely wrap a piece of thread or yarn around the child’s wrists and hold it securely. Explain that the thread or yarn is like a little lie. Ask the child to break free (hold the thread or yarn loosely enough that the child can break free).

    Then wrap the child’s wrists a dozen or so times as you explain that one lie can lead to many more as we try to cover up our lies. When we lie, we often have to tell more lies to keep people from finding out that we lied. When we tell many lies, it is more difficult to free ourselves. Ask the child to break free now. If the child succeeds, you may want to try with even more layers of thread or yarn. Explain that the more we lie, the harder it becomes to choose the right and tell the truth.

    • How can you break free from these lies?

    Use a pair of scissors to cut through the thread and free the child’s hands. Explain that to be free of lies, we must always tell the truth. If we have already told a lie, we must repent by telling the truth to the person we lied to. When we tell the truth, we can be happy.

  3. Prepare for each child a copy of the “secret message” found at the end of the lesson. Give each child a copy of the message and a pencil. Explain that one of Jesus Christ’s teachings is in the secret message. Tell the children they can discover the secret message by finding the letter that goes with each symbol and writing it in the box underneath the symbol. Write in one letter as an example and help the children as needed.

    Ask the children to fold their arms and smile when they know what the secret message is. When all the children have discovered the message, have them read the words of the secret message together with you: “Tell the truth.”

  4. Have the children act out some of the “Tell the Truth” game situations used in the lesson, demonstrating the right choice in each situation.

tell the truth game