Monday, May 23, 2016

Teachers Council: Teaching the Savior's Way

We just held our first ward teachers' council. I have taught the "Teaching, No Greater Call" course in the past.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is focusing on developing the quality of teaching in the LDS Church.  Some of this improvement involves transforming many of our traditional and accepted teaching concepts and paradigms. In our ward and stake, we will conduct a teacher's council each 4th Sunday. 

I was curious if we could manage the logistics of continuing the usual schedule of meetings while at the same time having all Sunday School, Primary, Relief Society, Nursery, Priesthood teachers and Ward Council members attend this teachers council. We seemed to pull it off without a hitch.  Attendance of some of the other Sunday School classes second hour was more sparse but adequate. 

I'm not really sure the direction this teacher's council will take. A member of our Sunday School presidency served as a discussion facilitator. There are a series of videos and a short manual the Church has produced which serve as a kind of curriculum to stimulate conversation.

One topic that was raised today was how the Church plans to apply the "Come Follow Me" principle in Primary.  While I have been amazed at how successful the program has been with the Deacon's Quorum, I'm not sure a primary teacher could just assign Little Johnny to prepare and teach the lesson next week, but I think teachers could invite primary children to teach or lead discussion on a particular principle or part of the lesson.  

Applying "Come Follow Me" principle to the Primary was suggested as a possible way to deal with a behavior issue in our CTR7 class.  An intelligent child who has difficulty being reverent and attending may be served by having them prepare and present or lead a discussion on a part of the lesson.  This sure works for the Deacons. 

Having 6 children of my own, I know that my older children can easily prepare a Family Home Evening lesson but even the younger children can make significant contributions and in this way, the following scripture came to my mind, and I realized that the "Come Follow Me" principle would serve to "loose the tongues of our children", empowering them to "speak great and marvelous things". 

"And it came to pass that he did teach and minister unto the children of the multitude of whom hath been spoken, and he did loose their tongues, and they did speak unto their fathers great and marvelous things, even greater than he had revealed unto the people; and he loosed their tongues that they could utter. ... and they both saw and heard these children; yea, even babes did open their mouths and utter marvelous things;" (Book of Mormon, 3 Nephi, 26:14,16)

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