Lesson 4: Joseph Smith Prepares to Receive the Gold Plates


The purpose of teaching Primary 5 Lesson 4: Joseph Smith Prepares to Receive the Gold Plates is to encourage everyone to prepare themselves to serve Jesus Christ and others.

Teaching Thoughts

  • Use my handout idea of preparing to take a trip. Bring in a suitcase and some items. What would your class pack? Why? What would you choose to leave behind? Then read a scenario that would happen on your trip (boat sank, crossing through hot desert, etc.) Are you prepared for it? Ask your class then what they think the Lord would have them pack for Joseph Smith? What do you think the Lord wants you to pack?
  • Read through Chapter 4 of Church History in the Fulness of Times Student Manual for more details about this period in Joseph's life.
  • The Red Headed Hostess has another great lesson packet that includes 5 learning activities. 

The following links are to LDS.org resources unless otherwise stated.

Teacher Study

"A Time to Prepare" by Elder Ian S. Ardern

"Now Is the Time to Prepare" by President Russell M. Nelson


They that Are Wise (about 8 minutes)- The parable of the ten virgins

The Second Coming (about 2 minutes)- Illustrated Scripture Story

The Parable of the Ten Wise Virgins  (about 1 1/2 minutes)- Illustrated Scripture Story

Preparation of Joseph Smith: Tutored by Heaven (about 3 1/2 minutes)- Joseph's account of Moroni's visitation and getting the plates

The Promises of the Book of Mormon (about 1 minute)- Illustrated scripture story

The Angel Moroni and the Gold Plates (about 4 minutes)- Illustrated scripture story


"Keep the Commandments"- Children's Songbook pg. 146

"Teach Me to Walk in the Light"- Children's Songbook pg. 177

"I Know My Father Lives"- Children's Songbook pg. 5

"A Young Man Prepared"- Children's Songbook pg. 166

"I Hope They Call Me on a Mission"- Children's Songbook pg. 169

"I Love to See the Temple"-  Children's Songbook pg. 95

"Saturday"- Children's Songbook pg. 196

"When He Comes Again"- Children's Songbook pg. 82

"We'll Bring the World His Truth"- Children's Songbook pg. 172

"An Angel Came to Joseph Smith"- Children's Songbook pg. 86

"The Golden Plates"- Children's Songbook pg. 86

"An Angel from on High"- Hymn #13

Additional Scripture References

D&C 1:12

Ether 2:25

Alma 12:24

D&C 133:4

Alma 16:16



My Primary 5 Lesson 4 handout packet includes

  • Tic-Tac-Toe board with questions for the X's and O's. This is a variation of Enrichment Activity 5. Instead of doing as a whole class, break up into pairs. Each person has 5 questions to ask the other. 
  • "I Can Prepare Now" and "I Can Decide Now" worksheet- This is a combination of Enrichment Activity 1 and 2 with my spin on it. 
    • If we were to go on a big trip in 6 months, what things would we have to do to prepare now- what would you put in your suitcase? What things do you want to put in your life's suitcase? 
    • What decisions about your trip can you make now? What route do you want to take? Those are decisions you can make before you go. What life decisions can you make now?

Activity Ideas

Preparing for the Temple- A search and find for objects in the picture

Worthy of the Temple- Explains how a Bishop helps us get to the temple and includes a craft of a Bishop opening his office door

I Can Be a Missionary Now- Build a gospel sharing home

The Temple-I'm Going There Someday- Matching game that focuses on ways to prepare to enter the temple.

The Book of Mormon, a Gift from Heavenly Father- Scripture figures to help tell the story or use this coloring book version.

The Smith Family- Church History figures (get your class to tell the story to you when you use these as puppets)

The Book on the Shelf- Maze

The Golden Plates- A matching game with facts about Joseph getting the gold plates.

Mystery Picture- Draw a mystery picture by answering questions about Joseph Smith getting the gold plates.

Seek and Ye Shall Find- Word search 

A Voice from the Dust- Mormonad of the plates.  Discover ways you can use these posters in your lesson.

Worth More than its Weight in Gold- Mormonad

Coming Forth of the Book of Mormon- Booklet to color and assemble

Coloring Pages

Joseph Smith Receives the Gold Plates

Joseph Smith Receives the Gold Plates from the Angel Moroni

I Can Prepare Now to Serve a Full-Time Mission

I Can Prepare to Be Worthy to Go to the temple

Testimony of Truth

The Scriptures Teach Me about Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and How to Return to Them