• What kind of feeling do you want in your future home?
• What gifts and talents can help us contribute to a happy home now and in the future?
• What skills and attitudes do we need to further develop to have successful and happy homes?
Excerpt from "Mothers Teaching Children in the Home" by Elder L. Tom Perry, April 2010 General Conference:
I recently had the opportunity to travel with Elder Donald L. Hallstrom to visit five cities in the great central area of the United States. In each city we visited, we would hold a meeting with the full-time missionaries, followed by a meeting with the stake and ward leaders regarding missionary work. Between each of the two meetings, the stake Relief Society would prepare a light dinner for us to afford us time to meet with the stake presidents. When we reached Milwaukee, Wisconsin, two young families appealed to the Relief Society to let them prepare and serve the dinner. The two husbands manned the kitchen. The two mothers supervised the table arrangements and the serving of the food. Three young children handled the table setting and the serving of the food under the supervision of their mothers. This was an opportunity for the mothers to have a teaching opportunity with their children. It was very special to watch the children respond to every detail as they were taught by their mothers. They carried out their assignments completely and fully.
The experience caused me to reflect on the training I had received from my mother. Like the prophet Nephi and also like so many of you, I was born of goodly parents (see 1 Nephi 1:1).
One of my nieces recently shared with me four notebooks my mother had filled with notes as she prepared to teach her class in Relief Society. I would imagine these notebooks—and there are others I have not yet examined—represent hundreds of hours of preparation by my mother.
Mother was a great teacher who was diligent and thorough in her preparation. I have distinct memories of the days preceding her lessons. The dining room table would be covered with reference materials and the notes she was preparing for her lesson. There was so much material prepared that I’m sure only a small portion of it was ever used during the class, but I’m just as sure that none of her preparation was ever wasted. How can I be sure about this? As I flipped through the pages of her notebooks, it was as if I were hearing my mother teach me one more time. Again, there was too much in her notebooks on any single topic to ever share in a single class session, but what she didn’t use in her class she used to teach her children.
I believe it is even safe to say that while my mother was an enormously effective teacher among the sisters at Relief Society, her best teaching occurred with her children in the home.
To read the full talk, click here.