Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Love the preparation suggestion #3 for this lesson - be sure, ladies, to "Make your classroom as attractive as possible for this lesson. Cover the table with a cloth and place a centerpiece on it." Giggle.
I think maybe I'll shoot for realism instead. I'll dump a basket of unsorted socks on the floor, scatter some cracker crumbs and potato chip wrappers, and place a pile of backpacks, shoes, coats, and homework folders right in front of the door to make it feel more like my home. Just kidding. Maybe.
For this lesson - "Each young woman will strive to create a home environment where the Spirit of the Lord can dwell" - a pretty straightforward goal, wouldn't you agree?
Yet there are so many ways to get there with a lesson like this!
You could go all practical - home organization, "House of Order" and similar scriptures, homemaking skills - because the Spirit recoils from messy houses (or something like that). Last year's Homemaking lesson might be a good place to begin if you feel you need to go that way. Just be aware that the next lesson has a VERY similar theme - #6 "Sharing Work in the Home" and right after that there is a four-lesson unit coming up called "Contributing to Family Life."
You could stay on the spiritual plane - perhaps using President Tanner's and Sister Cook's talks on how YW can nurture and spiritually strengthen their homes right now, and/or bringing in some of the material from Elder Bednar's Oct 09 talk on being more diligent and concerned at home - especially if you have a lot of girls who are from part-member families or who are the only member in their families. There's a lot they can do to be witnesses of God and strengths within their families. Just also be aware that #9 is a lot the same, "A Young Woman as a Peacemaker in Her Home."
You can blend the two - that there are spiritual dimensions to even the most mundane tasks of homemaking, and that spiritually nurturing homes have recognizable physical characteristics, the temple being the best model for this. Elder Stevenson's talk from May 09, "Sacred Homes, Sacred Temples" might be a good resource.
I think the end of this lesson would be a good time for a short brainstorm session about what life/home skills your girls are interested in learning, and calendaring some upcoming class activity to teach or learn those skills. You might be surprised what they don't know or what they are dying to learn how to do.
You also might be surprised that one person who can teach that skill is one of the girls themselves. A couple of weeks ago, sadly, we had a funeral in our ward for a young man in his mid-20s who died in a motorcycle accident. Our current bishop had been one of his quorum leaders when he was Priest-age and even back then this young man was really into cars, engines, motorcycles and was always fixing something up. One time when they were planning activities, the class wanted to learn about car maintenance. Well, the leader brushed this idea aside at first - since it wasn't something he knew anything about, he's not into getting under the hood of his car - but this young man spoke up: "Hey, I think that would be good. And I'll teach it." And he did. And it brought the quorum closer together and it gave this young man a chance to shine at the things he was good at and the other guys at the activity paid way more attention because it was someone their age teaching it. I've been thinking a lot about that story since then. I'm betting there are experts among our youth right under our noses, and kids who may need a chance to shine.