Study the lesson and decide how you want to teach the children the scripture account (see “Preparing Your Lessons,” p. vi, and “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii). Select the discussion questions and enrichment activities that will best help the children achieve the purpose of the lesson.
A Bible for each child.
A list of the ingredients in a cake for each child.
Picture 6-24, Moses and the Ten Commandments.
The chart of the Ten Commandments at the end of this lesson or from the meetinghouse library (65038).
Suggested Lesson Development
Invite a child to give the opening prayer.
You may use one or more of the following activities any time during the lesson or as a review, summary, or challenge.
Display the chart of the Ten Commandments with a few of the words covered, and let the children take turns filling in the blanks. (Or you could make copies of this chart, with some of the words missing, for each child and let the children fill in the blanks on their own copies.) They could then take their copies home to remind them to obey the Ten Commandments.
Briefly discuss what each commandment means and help the children learn them by playing a game. Give the children each a number or numbers, depending on the class size, from one to ten. Have them learn the commandment that corresponds to their number. Then call out various numbers. When each child’s number is called, have him or her say (or read from the chart) that commandment. After several turns give the children new numbers and play again.
Notice that all of the Ten Commandments fit under the two great commandments that Jesus Christ gave in Matthew 22:37–40: to love God and to love our neighbors. Write Love God and Love Neighbors on the chalkboard. Let the children take turns reading each commandment from Exodus 20:3–17 or from the chart. Have them write on the chalkboard a few key words from each commandment under the appropriate heading. Discuss specific ways to live these commandments, and challenge the children to choose one specific way to show love for God and to show love for their neighbors this week.
Place the wordstrip “Loss of Freedom—Unhappiness” on one wall of the classroom and the wordstrip “Freedom—Happiness” on the other. Explain that although Satan often makes it look like fun to break the commandments, all the choices we make have consequences. When people follow Satan’s plan, at first it seems to give them more freedom. But as they continue to make wrong choices, the consequences begin to bind them. For example, if people lie and cheat, they are not worthy to be in the presence of God. People who choose to keep the commandments may at first feel restricted. But as they continue to make right choices, their lives begin to open up to greater freedoms. For instance, if young people stay pure and morally clean, later they will have the privilege of going to the holy temple to receive all the blessings of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Have the children choose slips of paper with an action written on each paper, such as “don’t steal,” “control your temper,” “smoke and drink,” “lie,” “stay pure and clean,” and so on.
Depending on what their papers say, have the children stand by the appropriate wordstrip and read the action and tell what the consequence might be and why it brings us happiness and freedom or unhappiness and loss of freedom.
Sing or read the words to “Keep the Commandments” (Children’s Songbook, p. 146) or “The Commandments” (Children’s Songbook, p. 112).