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Primary Class Missionary Story Activity from “Fourth Floor, Last Door”

I’ve recently been called back to Primary, teaching the CTR4s! (Yay!) Anyway, I was teaching this lesson from the Primary 3 manual “Lesson 24: The Lord Helps Missionaries,” but this activity could work with any missionary themed Primary lesson or Sharing Time. Taking President Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s story “Fourth Floor, Last Door,” we acted out the story of the hard-working missionaries knocking on every door in the apartment building.
For “doors” I had corrugated cardboard rectangles, a bit bigger than a notebook sheet of paper, one for each child in the class. I cut up a box that had something printed on the outside for my “doors,” but the inside was plain brown, so that side was a door. With a large black marker I created doorknobs (just black circles filled in) on the plain brown sides. The kids did not mind the print on the wrong sides. I also created a missionary name tag by printing a look-a-like I found on the internet.
Showing the class a picture of President Uchtdorf and explaining how he is a helper (counselor) to our prophet President Monson, I said I was going to tell a true story that he told. In Germany where President Uchtdorf came from, there was an apartment building with four (show 4 fingers) floors. The missionaries were looking for a family to teach about Jesus. They started knocking on every door on every floor.
I picked a child to be our missionary (keeping it simple for 4-year olds, we had only one missionary, not a pair), and I put the missionary name tag on the child. I instructed him or her to go to a door and knock. The cardboard was stiff enough to make a satisfying knocking sound. I instructed the child holding the door to say, “nobody home.” Very quickly the kids caught on and continued through all the doors. When they finished the last door, I said, “That was the first floor. Now let’s climb the stairs,” (acting out climbing stairs) “and let’s do the second floor.” We continued like that to the fourth floor. Sometimes we switched out the child playing the missionary, and we had to add a few extra turns on a floor to let everyone who wanted to be a missionary have a turn. Finally on the fourth floor, I said, “something special is going to happen at the last door,” to build some suspense. When the “missionary” got to the last door, I whispered to the child holding the last door, “say ‘come in and teach us.'” I then finished telling the story about how the mother read the Book of Mormon, she and two daughters joined the Church, and one of the daughters grew up to be Sister Uchtdorf, etc. I followed up with questions, “Do you think Heavenly Father was glad those missionaries worked hard, knocking on all those doors?” “Was the family glad the missionaries taught them about Jesus?” etc.
This activity was a big hit with the 4- and 5-year olds.
Your comments are welcome below. Click on “Comments” to enter one.
~~Matia Bryson

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