Tip for living: 'Teaching to Build Faith and Faithfulness'

By Wendy Jessen

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, April 4 2013 5:00 a.m. MDT

Most of us have probably painstakingly sat through a lecture by a parent or a teacher where we did not retain or even sometimes hear much of what was said. Conversely, there have been times where the opposite is true.

Sister Kathy K. Clayton, wife of Elder L. Whitney Clayton of the Quorum of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has written a guide for parents and teachers to be an effective instrument in helping others learn."Teaching to Build Faith and Faithfulness: Ten Principles for Teachers and Parents" (Deseret Book, $18.99) offers many tips on how to accomplish the goal of instructing pupils effectively.

Her tips include:

Get your audience to be involved and participate in the lesson. This helps students understand and internalize the material being taught.

Know your students. It is impossible to be sensitive to the needs of people if time has not been spent getting to know them. Understanding their needs, struggles and strengths is crucial.

Teaching is not controlling. Every individual has agency. As the Prophet Joseph Smith taught, "I teach the people correct principles and they govern themselves."

Being an example or a mentor of gospel principles promotes change in others. When people can see that you are living gospel standards and that it works in your life, that example will influence them to change for the better.

Sister Clayton's book is an effective handbook for parents and teachers to better teach and inspire individuals to live more faithfully.

Wendy Jessen is a Southern Utah University graduate and a stay-at-home mother of six. Her email is wendyjessen26@gmail.com and she blogs at mormonmomofsix.blogspot.com.

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