(Pull strips out of a bowl and read out loud.)
1. I don't want to clean up! I'm not done playing!
2. You always want to be in charge! I don't even want to play with you!
3. That's not very good. Why did you do it like that?
Discuss how these statements make you feel. Unkind words make us feel bad. The words that we choose to use are important.
1. (complain) These cookies are so good!
2. (angrily) I love you!
3. (meanly) It's fun to play with you!
Discuss how even though the words are kind, the way you say things can make a difference. Speaking in a kind way is just as important as choosing kind words. So is having a good attitude.
1. Would you like to play with me?
2. I'm having a hard time making this. Could you help me?
3. I like spending time with you.
4. Can I finish this really quick before I clean up?
5. That looks great! I like the way you did this part.
6. I love you!
Discuss how these statements make you feel. When we speak kindly and use kind words, we feel happy and those around us feel happy too.
What we choose to focus on can change our view of situations or other people. When we choose to look for the positive or what is good, we feel happier and it's easier to have a good attitude.
Read or paraphrase this story about some jungle animals who discovered how what they chose to focus on changed their attitudes about each other. ("Pass it on" by Annabelle Sumera, Friend, Apr 1978)
In the scriptures, we read about some brothers who reacted differently to the same situations. Laman and Lemuel were quick to murmur and complain when things seemed difficult, but Nephi turned to the Lord for help and did his best to accomplish what was asked of him. Discuss the different reactions these brothers had to situations like leaving their home in Jerusalem, returning to get the brass plates, Nephi's broken bow, and building a ship. Laman and Lemuel murmured or complained while Nephi was determined to go and do.
Read this story about Nephi and his brothers from the May 2000 Friend Sharing Time: Keeping Promises. (Copy and paste pictures and text, have the kids color the pictures in advance, and make into a book.)
Just as the liahona didn't work when they were unkind or complaining, the Spirit can only guide us when we try our best to do what is right. It's important to have a good attitude even when things are hard. We can rely on the Lord's help when we do our best.
How can the words we choose, the way we say things, and our attitude affect our ability to have the Spirit in our home and to guide us personally?
-Importance of speaking kindly and having a good attitude in order to be happy and to be able to have the Spirit with us to guide us in our lives.
1. Read "Gerald's Secret New Year's Resolutions" by Vicki H. Budge, Friend, Jan. 1978, and unscramble the words to discover what Gerald resolutions were.
2. Choose the Right Words (multiple choice scenarios from Jan. 2010 Friend)
3. Read "Clean up Claire" from May 2008 Friend and discuss how to change our attitude and invite the Spirit after complaining.