|Character Word of the Week
Interdisciplinary Character Education
| Each week
Counting on Character features a different character word of the week.
The word of the week is a largest part of the Counting on Character
program. They represent different facets of character that combine to
reinforce a series of behaviors, beliefs, and perspectives that
constitute good character.
Parents and teachers both have an important role to play in encouraging the development of these traits in young people. Each word has a page that includes a variety of activities for parents and teachers to do with young people. There are different activities for different age levels. Younger children start by learning what a trait is, and then when they are a little older they practice that trait in a safe environment. In middle school and high school they deal with the limits within which it is acceptable to apply a trait and with resolving conflicts between different character traits. As a child matures they move from one level to the next as they advance through the education system.
The school activities are designed to be used by teachers of traditional disciplines not taught separately in a "character class." Civic virtues should be taught by social science teachers, literature teachers should discuss character issues that appear in novels with students, and science teachers should encourage students to discuss the how character related issues interact with science.
Some pages contain suggestions to the teacher about creating a learning environment conducive to character education. These suggestions focus on simple things teachers can do to make their classroom environment an example of good character. They also highlight little mistakes that teachers can make that undermine character education.
The pages are not exhaustive and are meant to be a starting point from which individual educators can build a program to meet the unique needs of their students. They are also meant to give parents a clear idea of what the schools are doing to support them in their effort to encourage their children to become people of outstanding character. There are pages for each week and pages for the Twelve Guiding Principles of Character Education.
Last Edited: 07/03/00