A few weeks ago Scott and I were invited to attend the Strengthening Marriage class at church. They tell us that they are extending invites to couples in the ward as they go down the rolls alphabetically . . . . we hope that isn't just the "story" they are telling us when really the bishopric is concerned about our marriage. ;)
Anyways, it's a fun class and this Sunday we had a lesson about communication and using kind words. We had a great object lesson / activity and I decided that it would translate well for a Family Home Evening Lesson.
Note: Our family home evening lessons are not usually this put together. Most of the time it's a sit-around-and-discuss-a-topic-as-we-come-up-with-it-on-the-fly kind of lesson. So when we DO pull out an organized lesson, and it works, you can bet I'm going to share it.
Each of the kids were given a tube of toothpaste (yay, dollar store!) and a paper plate. We told them to create a picture using their toothpaste and they needed to use as much of the toothpaste as possible.
We'll just skip over the part that may or may not have involved some tears of frustration.
Then . . . after the pictures were judged, we told them to put the toothpaste back into the tubes. I supplied them with straws, toothpicks, and plastic spoons. I'll have to say that they got pretty resourceful -- sucking up toothpaste with a straw and blowing it back into the tube. Anna tried to spoon her toothpaste back in, making an absolute mess, and laughing the whole time.
Eventually we called time! and shared the point of the object lesson: The toothpaste is like the words we speak. Just like it was impossible to put all the toothpaste back into the tube, once we say something it is hard to take it back. And so, we should be careful about the words that we say . . . only speaking kind words to each other.
I had Conner read "The Power of Kind Words" from the March 2011 Friend magazine.
We also read "Speaking Kind Words" from the January 1997 Friend. But we did it as a reader's theater. I printed out 3 copies of the story and highlighted the parts for a narrator (Conner), Jonathan (Payton), and Christi (Anna). The kids had a lot of fun with that.
I found a fun quiz called "Choose the Right Words" from the January 2010 Friend. I read the scenarios and options A and B out loud while the kids wrote their answers on a sheet of paper. Hopefully most of their answers are "B's", indicating that they are using right words in their speech and interactions with others.
Payton, the wild card, didn't always like option A or B. Sometimes it was "A and a half" or "C - none of the above."
Number 6 said: A younger child shows you a drawing she made. You
a. say, "I can't even tell what that is."
b. say, "I like the colors you chose," or, "You are good at drawing."
Payton's write-in answer was: "I'd say nothing and slowly walk away."
That answer brought down the house as we all erupted into laughter. Oh man, there were a whole lot of belly laughs and tears for me! That boy cracks me up. And he's being totally serious!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Wondering what is Family Home Evening? Go HERE