“Idea List: Preparing a Lesson,” New Era, Aug. 2004, 15
Have you ever been asked to teach or help with a lesson and then felt really nervous? Knowing how to prepare a lesson can help make teaching less scary (see D&C 38:30). Whether you’re helping teach in seminary, church, or family home evening, these ideas can help you prepare.
Begin preparing early.
Pray for guidance. The Spirit can help you prepare.
Study the ideas presented in the lesson manual.
Read what the scriptures and Church leaders say about the topic (see D&C 52:9).
Prayerfully decide what the people you’re teaching need to learn. Sunbeams have different needs than priests.
From the manual, choose two or three gospel principles to focus on.
Plan ways to involve everyone.
Decide which teaching methods—like hymns, quotes, object lessons—will best help your students understand the scriptures or gospel topic.
Plan ways to relate the lesson to what the students are experiencing in their lives.
Write an outline of your lesson. In what order will you teach the two or three gospel principles you have chosen from the manual?
Decide when you will ask questions to stimulate thinking and participation.
Plan when you will use other teaching methods (video clips, gospel art, writing activities, personal experiences, small-group discussions, etc.).
Prepare to give the class some time during the lesson to decide how they will apply what they’ve learned.
Talk to others about your lesson; your parents or leaders might have helpful ideas.
Your ward teacher improvement coordinator can help.
The manual Teaching, No Greater Call has many helpful ideas, including activities. Find it at www.lds.org in the Gospel Library> Church Publications> Curriculum> Teaching.
Trying to do all of these ideas for one lesson can seem overwhelming. So each time you prepare to teach, choose just a few of these to work on.