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Helping Our Primary Class be Kinder

Guest Author - Terrie Lynn Bittner

This can be used as a Sharing Time, as a brief lesson in class (with permission from your Primary Presidency) or in connection with last week's article. It continues the butterfly theme of last week.

Everything is Different Now (Kindness to classmates)

Use the same method of introducing the changes as described in the reverence lesson. Explain that one thing that will be different now will be that we are all going to be kind to one another.

Have the children pat their knees silently. Use an adaptation of activity number 2 in the July 1996 Friend’s Sharing Time. I altered the verse because most younger children won’t remember or say their parts alone. Instead, we all chant, “Who is our friend in our Primary class? (hands to side in question mode.) Alexis is our friend in our Primary class! Yippee! (Hands raised as if cheering.) Hooray! (Same action.) Alexis is our friend in Primary class.” Continue until you’ve done every child.

Give each child a paper bag that has the parts to the craft. Put his name on it. Place the bags on a table. When it’s time to do them, ask one child to select a bag and bring it to you. Read the name and ask that child to deliver it to the owner. Instruct the owner to say thank you.

Craft advanced preparation: Find a coloring book picture of a butterfly. Make a pattern on cardboard and trace onto pieces of construction paper. Each child’s packet will have enough butterflies—all the same color—to share one with each child and keep one for himself. Include a pipe cleaner. Punch a hole into the head of each butterfly. Write the child’s name on each butterfly in his packet.

Instructions for craft: Tell the children they are going to make a butterfly garden like the one in the story. However, their gardens would be prettier with more colors. Ask one child if she would share her butterflies with the others if they shared theirs with her. (Choose a generous child.) Ask her to give each child one of her butterflies and instruct the receiver to thank her. Let each child do the same. This takes a while, but it’s important for them to see each child sharing with them and to say thank you.

Instruct the children to string their butterflies onto their pipe cleaner and then to twist it closed. They can wear it on their wrist as a bracelet or hang it in their rooms. Thank them for sharing so nicely and tell them that each time they see their garden, they will know it was beautiful because they shared.

Summarize the expected behaviors of your class toward each other.

Create a poster or decorate your room with a Friendship Garden. Give each child a butterfly to color. Have them write their names on the front. Each week, bring something spring-related for each child to color and add to the board. Tell them you will let them add to the garden each week that the entire class has been kind to each other. (Never leave one child out. In Primary, we don’t like to exclude someone.) When they haven’t been reasonably kind, don’t scold. Just say sadly, as you’re finishing up, “Oh, I wish we could have added the purple flowers today. I’m sure next week, everyone will be kind and we’ll be able to do that. I’ll bring them again then.” Then give them all hugs or in other ways show you aren’t angry.

Copyright © 2007 Deseret Book
Sharing Through Primary Songs, Vol. 3

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Content copyright © 2013 by Terrie Lynn Bittner. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Terrie Lynn Bittner. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Brenda Emmett for details.


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