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Book review: Part 2 of Teaching the Book of Mormon series an all-inclusive teacher's guide

Published: Thursday, July 2 2015 7:11 a.m. MDT

"Teaching the Book of Mormon, Part 2: Alma 17-Moroni" is by John S. Bushman, Reed Romney, John R. Manis and Curt R. Wakefield. (Cedar Fort)

"TEACHING THE BOOK OF MORMON, Part 2: Alma 17-Moroni," edited by John S. Bushman, Reed Romney, John R. Manis and Curt R. Wakefield, Cedar Fort, $24.99, 376 pages (nf)

Sometimes tailoring a gospel lesson from the Book of Mormon to a specific age group can be difficult. Seeking ideas from multiple outside sources like magazines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or last year’s manual may feel cumbersome.

What if those all the resources needed were organized into one book?

Luckily, "Teaching the Book of Mormon, Part 2: Alma 17-Moroni" does just that. This book is an all-in-one guide to supplement church manuals for class instruction — and it doesn't disappoint.

Authors John S. Bushman, Reed Romney, John R. Manis and Curt R. Wakefield don't want this book to replace church-approved lesson plans, but rather serve as a support.

Curt Wakefield is one of the authors of Teaching the Book of Mormon series. (Provided by Cedar Fort) Curt Wakefield is one of the authors of Teaching the Book of Mormon series. (Provided by Cedar Fort)

This 376-page study guide is broken up into chapters, exactly how the Book of Mormon is written. Prior to the actual chapter summaries, the authors have written basic facts: time period, major contributors source, abridged by and synopsis. Blank lines for notes accompany every page with room on the sides for additional thoughts.

And that's not all. Peppered throughout the verses are the ideas teachers will benefit from most, easily labeled with symbols defined in the introduction:

  • Lesson starters to grab attention or break the ice
  • “Look for” words to engage the class prior to reading a scripture
  • Analyze and apply questions to help digest understanding
  • Group work ideas, allowing class to share thoughts
  • Participation activities like drawing on the board
  • Writing activities such as quiet writing time
  • Insights like historical facts and tidbits
  • Quotes from prophets and other church leaders
  • “Deep into their hearts” — invitation for the teacher to bear testimony and assist the learner to “feel the prompting of the Holy Ghost, make applications in their lives and commit to live those principles,” according to the introduction.
Part 2 of the Teaching the Book of Mormon series, which covers Alma 17 through Moroni, is easy to use as it lays flat when opened, making it convenient to save a spot and take notes. The book is geared toward adults teaching any age group, but easy enough for youth to understand and teach with as well.
John Manis is one of the authors of Teaching the Book of Mormon series. (Provided by Cedar Fort) John Manis is one of the authors of Teaching the Book of Mormon series. (Provided by Cedar Fort)

It’s clear that Bushman, Romney, Manis and Wakefield spent hundreds of hours researching gospel principles in order to fine-tune this outstanding Book of Mormon supplement.

The authors range from seminary teachers, who have either doctorates or master’s degrees, to authors of previously published books and all seem to have a deep love of learning and teaching.

Brooke Porter is a California native turned Oklahoma adoptee. She writes, edits and is a full-time wife to a busy pediatric resident. Join her worrisome scenarios and solutions at atleastitsnotasingle.blogspot.com. EMAIL: bporter@deseretdigital.com

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