Summaries of Your Lesson Plans!

Note:  Following are summaries of lesson plans submitted by other users. Among these summaries are fourteen episodes that are considered public domain, and are generally the most easily available.  The other two public domain episodes, “Rafe Hollister Sings” and “Opie and the Spoiled Kid,” can be found on the main listings of lesson plans and class summaries.  There are also other lesson plans covering episodes that aren’t quite as easy to find, but just as fun to watch!

Pilot Episode – “Danny Meets Andy Griffith” (from “The Danny Thomas Show”)

 This is the first introduction of Sheriff Andy Taylor to the world in 1960.  It is the episode of “The Danny Thomas Show” that spawned the series, “The Andy Griffith Show.”  It is very interesting as we see Andy and Opie in familiar roles, but there are some things around town that may seem a little surprising to big fans of the show.  However, just as in TAGS, there are valuable lessons to be learned from Andy and Danny’s chance meeting in Mayberry.

Runaway Kid

Andy hangs himself on his own pitchfork when he teaches Opie lessons on the importance of a fine character – “never let your friend down; never break your word, and when you make a promise never break it.”

Stranger in Town

The town is in an uproar because a stranger, Ed Sawyer, got off the bus and knows all about the townspeople, but no one in town knows him!  Barney wants to arrest him and Andy, although he’s curious, tries to keep everyone calm.

Mayberry Goes Hollywood

A Big-Time Hollywood director wants to make a movie in Mayberry!  While the director returns to Hollywood to retrieve the filming equipment, a certain transformation takes place among the local townsfolk.  Will the director be pleased with the changes or is it a disaster in the making?  Like the residents of Mayberry, are we overly interested in appearances?  How does a little attention cause us to change our behavior?

The Horse Trader (1) (2)

Andy attempts to teach Opie a lesson on the Golden Rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."  But is the saying "Do as I say, not as I do" a more apt description of Andy's example?

Andy and the Gentleman Crook

The Mayberry jail has a celebrity visitor, Gentleman Dan Caldwell. Mr. Caldwell has a reputation and has spent time in all the well- known prisons and is spending a short time in Mayberry before they move him to another location. Barney is beside himself making preparations for their famous visitor and is so impressed that Mr. Caldwell calls him by name.  As a matter fact, Mr. Caldwell has a gift for connecting with people and winning them over. But is he really a gentleman?

A Plaque for Mayberry (1) (2)

The Women's Historical Society discovers that someone in Mayberry is a direct descendant of Revolutionary War hero Nathan Tibbs. Barney is confident that he's the one; instead, it turns out to be Otis Campbell. "To save the dignity of our fair city," Mayor Pike and the town council pressure Andy to tell Otis he is no longer getting the award. Andy stands by Otis, who distinguishes himself with humbleness and dignity.

The Inspector

A new State Inspector is coming to inspect the Mayberry jail and Barney arrests Otis to “dress up the place.” During the inspection, misunderstanding and mishaps put our Mayberry force in jeopardy of impeachment!

Ellie Saves a Female

Ellie turns farm girl Frances "Frankie" Flint into a young beauty against her father's strong objections.  After failed attempts by Ellie and Barney, Andy appeals to the businessman in Mr. Flint by convincing him you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

Quiet Sam (1) (2)

Barney becomes suspicious of the strange habits of Sam Becker, a shy, secretive farmer living on the outskirts of Mayberry. Sam's wife is about to give birth to their first child, and he has nobody to help him. With the local doctor unavailable, Andy is forced to deliver the baby, while Barney keeps Sam occupied.

Bringing Up Opie (1) (2)

Everyone loves an episode that centers on Opie!  The men folk at the courthouse begin to realize just how much they miss Opie when he is banned from coming to the jail.  They did it for his own good, but it proves to be a difficult time for all, including little Opie.  Even if you don’t have children, this is a great lesson about our influences in personal conflicts and various relationships, as well as positive parenting and wise leadership.

Barney Gets His Man

Barney accidentally captures bank robber Eddie Brooke while issuing him a ticket for littering. As Brooke is driven away, he growls, "I'll get you for this, deputy." Barney's celebration ends abruptly when he learns that Brooke has escaped and was last seen heading toward Mayberry. Andy plots Brooke's recapture by luring Barney to fire his gun toward the unarmed Brooke.

Barney's Replacement

Bob Rogers, a lawyer from the state attorney's office, is sent to Mayberry to intern as a deputy to gain law enforcement experience. Convinced Andy is going to replace him, Barney lets his pride get the best of him and resigns to become a door-to-door vacuum salesman. Andy tricks Barney into rejoining the force by invoking the little-known Green River Ordinance and showing him Rogers does not know how to deal with people.

Andy and the Woman Speeder

Andy gives a speeding ticket to beautiful big-city woman Elizabeth Crowley. By the time the case goes to trial, Miss Crowley has used flattery and bribery to turn the witnesses for the prosecution--Floyd, Barney, and Opie--against Andy. After winning the case, Miss Crowley sees the error of her ways and promptly speeds out of town intentionally so Andy can give her another ticket and allow her to pay the fine she deserved in the first place.

The Clubmen

Roger Courtney, one of Andy's fishing buddies, puts Andy and Barney up for membership in the Esquire Club, an exclusive men's club in Raleigh. Barney, of course, overreacts and alienates the entire group by trying too hard to fit in. Andy is offered membership, but Barney is not. Andy tells Roger he must decline because he does not feel right joining a club that wouldn't let in his best friend. Before Andy can break the news to Barney, Barney assumes Andy was the one rejected and sits down to write the club a scathing letter of rejection himself.

Keeper of the Flame (1) (2)

More Opie, more lessons!  Opie has joined a secret club and made an oath of secrecy.  All is well until a sudden fire at Jubal Foster's farm points to a gang of boys who have been hanging around the place.  What's worse is that Aunt Bee has found matches and a candle in Opie's room.  When is it ok to deny one's oath?  How quick should we be in passing judgement?  Should we sample the fire water from Jubal's barn?  All good questions for this episode!

Barney and the Choir

When the lead tenor drops out of the Mayberry town choir, Barney happily volunteers to fill in.  The choir members soon realize that Barney "can't sing a lick," but nobody has the heart to tell him.  The solution is to trick Barney into whispering into a dead microphone, while someone else is singing into a live microphone back stage.

Lawman Barney

When two farmers illegally sell produce on the side of the road, Barney orders them to move to a location further from town.  The farmers defy and intimidate Barney, and he drives away scared.  Later, Barney gathers the courage to face them again and persuade them that the badge he wears represents more than just one small man.

The Bed Jacket

This is a pointed story that tugs at everyone’s heartstrings.  Aunt Bee works so hard to take care of Andy and Opie and prides herself on being practical.  But just this once, she would love to have this extravagant gift for her birthday.  Andy parts with one of his prized possessions to be able to get it for her.  Don’t miss this great lesson on personal sacrifices.  (It is also fun to watch Mayor Stoner as Andy teaches him the real-life lesson of “how one hand washes the other.”)

One-Punch Opie

A new boy (Steve Quincy) moves to Mayberry and immediately starts leading Opie's friends down the wrong path. Opie stands up to him ready to fight and realizes the boy is all talk. This is the episode where Barney does his famous "Nip it in the bud!" speech.

High Noon in Mayberry

“The Andy Griffith Show” almost turns into a western, with the bad guy and the sheriff shooting it out.  Or that’s the conclusion Barney jumps to anyway.  Andy doesn’t really know what is going to happen, but he is brave and faithful while waiting for a man from his past that says he has something to settle.  Could this man have revenge on his mind?  You have to see this great lesson, if for nothing else, to watch the Mayberry knot-tying class in action!

The Loaded Goat (1) (2)

No, this one isn’t entirely about Otis, although he is in it.  The star of this episode is a hungry goat with a healthy appetite, named Jimmy.  Well, Jimmy munches on some sticks of dynamite, and everyone is concerned he might blow up.  You’ll watch as different people have different reactions to this explosive situation, and how music can soothe the savage beast (and also one that has “eaten hisself fulla dynamite!”)

Class Reunion (1) (2)

Andy and Barney are having a high school reunion and learn lessons in cooperation, pride, friendship, and contentment.  They take a walk down memory lane and some of the memories turn out to be a little painful.  Do you feel like you are always chasing happiness, or are you content with what you have … with what you have become?  It just might be possible that what you are searching for is something you already have.

The Great Filling Station Robbery

An unfortunate young man, who always seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, is getting the mistaken reputation as a thief.  However, he doesn’t let the circumstantial evidence against him dampen his spirits!  Look for Barney as he steps into the “electronal marvel” age with high-tech law enforcement equipment.  We see in this episode, no matter how dismal a situation appears, God can still turn troubles around.

Andy Discovers America

Even if history wasn’t your best subject in school, you’ll love Andy’s story about Paul Revere and the shot heard around the world!  A need for strong communication skills can be seen here, just as in many other episodes.  However, this one also teaches us that we should never stop learning, and that it is very important to teach others what we know.

Aunt Bee’s Medicine Man(1) (2)

Aunt Bee is reminded of her own mortality and that she isn’t a “spring chicken” anymore.  A charming stranger visits Mayberry who seems to have the quick, easy solution to all her problems.  Mayberry life doesn’t seem quite complete without a little music, so Aunt Bee and the Ladies Aid Church Committee do their part to “make a joyful noise.”  Don’t miss their concert, or the lessons on deception and inner strength, as well as faith in God.

The Darlings Are Coming

In this episode, the Darling family makes their first appearance.  They are from the mountains and are a little different from most people in Mayberry, but they sure can play great music!  And they are an interesting bunch, too!  The family patriarch, Briscoe, has some unique ideas about following the rules and about life, in general.

Andy’s English Valet

This is Mayberry’s chance to see how other folks live in other parts of the world.  Those people in Britain sure are different … or are they?  Maybe they, like all people, simply want the same things we want – to feel loved and appreciated.  It is also about serving your fellow man and putting their needs above your own.  Perhaps we can learn more about ourselves along the way.

Barney’s First Car (1) (2)

This story is a favorite of many fans because an eventful day has come for Barney as he makes a big decision in his life.  His friends share in his good news on a Sunday drive in the country that you cannot miss!  Unfortunately, he has unknowingly become a victim of “Hubcaps” Lesch.  Observe how Barney reacts to sweet, little old ladies now!

The Rivals

Opie is bitten by the love bug for the first time but doesn’t quite know how to handle these new feelings.  He gets all kinds of advice and support from the adults, and learns a big lesson for himself in growing up.  Too bad Barney gets jealous over Thelma Lou’s kind, motherly attention toward Opie.  Remember the first time you were in love?  Recapture those strange feelings again through the experiences of Opie and Karen.

A Wife for Andy (1) (2)

That busybody Barney is meddling in Andy’s affairs again.  This time he is trying to get Andy remarried.  Andy has been patient about waiting for a new wife since Opie’s mother passed away, but Barney’s schemes are wearing Andy’s patience a little thin.  Although Andy doesn’t marry in this episode, he does get to know someone a little better, someone who could possibly be the next Mrs. Andy Taylor.  “Cupid” Barney may have hit his target after all.

Dogs, Dogs, Dogs

This is a special lesson about mercy and service to others.  We can all learn from Opie’s compassion. The title tells the stars of this one, but the lesson includes all animals and our fellow man as well.  Uncustomary for Andy, he is slow to be as merciful as his young son.  If possible, try to secure an uncut version of this episode to witness Barney’s speech about selfish giraffes!

Mountain Wedding

This marks the first appearance of Ernest T. Bass.  It’s about a wedding, but it also teaches us much more.  We learn about helpful hints for a happy marriage and various other relationships: good communication, strong commitment, and what to do when something goes wrong.  Sometimes relationships fail because we give up too easily when things get a little difficult.

The Big House

Several “Andy Griffith” episodes are about pride and humility, and this one is no exception.  But it is also about seizing the opportunity, doing your best, learning from your mistakes, and giving/taking second chances.  Pay close attention when Barney gives his classic speech about rules – You just might learn something!

Gomer the House Guest

When Gomer Pyle loses his job at Wally's filling station, Andy tries to be a good neighbor and invites Gomer to stay at his house until he finds another job. However, with naive Gomer sawing, fixing the vacuum, gargling, and singing at all hours of the night, nobody can get a good night's sleep. The solution is to convince Wally, who had lost most of his business, to rehire Gomer.

Citizen’s Arrest (1) (2)

Unlike our forgiving Gomer, he loses his temper when Barney gives him a ticket and then he “arrests” Barney for the same offense.  We all have dealings with loved ones, co-workers, and various other people in public every day.  Sometimes we let our tempers flare and our blood boil, instead of focusing on cooling those volatile predicaments with prudent, sound suggestions in conflict management.

Andy Saves Gomer

Just like the above episode, this is another one of the “Best of Gomer” shows.  He tends to annoy Andy and his family when he vows to repay Andy for saving his life.  But we can also see how important it is to show your appreciation AND to accept the kindness and gratitude of others.  With high hopes of evening the score, watch how Andy’s plan to let Gomer save him backfires!

Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.

This episode is the pilot for Jim Nabors’ own series by the same title.  Gomer decides to join the Marines, but even with Andy’s assistance, he manages to break a few military regulations and tries the thin patience of Sgt. Carter.  In honor of every man and woman who has served in the United States Armed Forces, we thank you for your devotion to our country and for sacrifices made in protecting our freedom.  We salute you! 

Barney and the Cave Rescue

Barney becomes the butt of jokes when he tries to prevent a bank hold-up and discovers it is the bank president and bank auditors entering the bank on Saturday.  Andy convinces him to attend the town picnic and forget about the ribbing, promising that he and Barney will take Helen and Thelma Lou off by themselves, away from the crowd. While exploring an old cave, Andy and Helen are trapped by a cave-in and Barney sets up a rescue.

The Haunted House

Before Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, Norman Bates, Chucky, Pinhead, Leatherface and other boogeymen, there was the ghost of Old Man Rimshaw’s hired hand.  Supposedly, he haunts an abandoned house in Mayberry (but it is really a tactic for keeping a moonshiner’s secret).  This story is about different kinds of “spirits” and how we handle our fears.  It also asks the question: “Do YOU believe in ghosts?”

The Song Festers

Sometimes Barney can carry a tune fairly well, and in some episodes he can’t sing a lick.  In addition to “Rafe Hollister Sings” and “Barney and the Choir,” this is one of those “he can’t sing” episodes.  Here, Barney’s feelings of disappointment come into play more than in the others.  In a way, Gomer is the one that pulls the rug out from under him, but then he also makes an unselfish sacrifice to pick Barney back up.

Fun Girls

Andy and Barney stay late at the office to catch up on some work, but the evening backfires when Daphne and Skippy show up at the courthouse.  What started out as a quiet evening turns into a nightmare as Andy and Barney struggle to hide their visitors from Helen and Thelma Lou.

Three Wishes For Opie


Barney dabbles in séances and fortune telling in this episode.  He and Opie are granted wishes from the spirit of Count Istvan Telecky of the Eighteenth Century, and they all seem to come true.  Were they only coincidences?  Or does Barney really know what he is doing?  Don’t miss this episode for some pretty strange occurrences in Mayberry.

Goober Takes a Car Apart


Andy attends the Sheriff's Safety Conference in Mt. Pilot for a day and a half and needs someone to answer the phone in the courthouse. Goober pleads with Andy to let him do it, but he is also under pressure from Gilly Walker to fix his car. The solution is simple: take the car apart, put it back together in the courthouse, and work on it there. The solution is also the ultimate test of Andy's patience.

Goober and the Art of Love


Andy and Barney get tired of Goober tagging along on their dates, so they encourage him to get a date. Nervous around women, Goober turns to Barney for dating advice. Barney decides that Goober needs to see courtship in action, so the two of them spy on Andy and Helen. Barney's plan works, that is, until the "5th Wheel" becomes a third couple.

Lost and Found

While painting a dresser, Aunt Bee discovers a pretty pearl-and-gold pin that was given to her by her Aunt Martha.  Shortly thereafter, the pin mysteriously disappears.  After receiving a claims check from the insurance agent, Aunt Bee finds the pin in her painting smock - however she has already spent the insurance money.  Andy and Aunt Bee must make a decision.  What would you do!?

Goober Makes History

Have you ever let flattery go to your head?  In this episode, Goober's self-confidence is boosted by compliments from his friends.  But in true Goober fashion, he ends up taking it too far.  A good lesson reflecting on where we gain our own confidence - from outward appearances, or from within?

The Church Benefactors

The Mayberry church receives a $500 gift, and the congregation is undecided as to how to spend the money. The church almost divides over whether to spend the money for new choir robes or for strengthening the church's crumbling foundation. Andy's common sense finally rules the day when he convinces the congregation that they must be practical.

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