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Missing Piece in Puzzle

The Missing Piece
in Education

Children Learning

Benjamin Franklin's The Art of Virtue

Franklin's Philosophy of Life
in His Own Words

312 Pages
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Do You Make These Mistakes In
Teaching Character Education Lessons?

Mistake One
Not Making Educating for Character a Priority

This usually happens because:

Green Check Image

The schedule is too full. There's not time to add anything else into the day much less time to prepare additional lessons

Green Check Image There is no money in the budget for additional curriculum resources.
Green Check Image There is not enough interest or support from parents for a character education program.

While these are valid concerns, they are supported by invalid assumptions.

Assumption One

Character Development is of lesser importance than learning Math, English, Reading and other basic curriculum subjects. Two of the early advocates of Public Education, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson had the following to say on the subject.

"It is said that the Persians, in their constitution, had public schools in which virtue was taught as a liberal art or science, and it is certainly of more consequence to a man that he has learnt to govern his passions in spite of temptation, to be just in his dealings, to be temperate in his pleasures, to support himself with fortitude under misfortune, to behave with prudence in all his affairs and every circumstance of life, I say, it is of much more real advantage to him to be thus qualified, than to be master of all the arts and sciences in the world besides."

                               Benjamin Franklin's The Art of Virtue, page 21

In his notes on the State of Virginia published in 1785, Jefferson proposed that Virginia be divided into Counties and in each of them, establish a public school "for teaching reading, writing and arithmetic" and in which, "the first elements of morality too may be instilled into their minds: such as, when further developed as their judgments advance in strength, may teach them how to work out their own greatest happiness, by showing them that it does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed them, but is always the result of a good conscience, good health, occupation and freedom in all just pursuits. . ."

Assumption Two:

The teaching of character education and teaching reading, writing and arithmetic are competitive endeavors competing for scarce resources in both time and money—Not true! When employing the Character Based Learning strategies utilized in "The Seven C's of Thinking Clearly" students develop essential lifeskills at the same time as learning math, history, science or any other subject.

Assumption Three:

It is difficult to believe parents would not wholly support any efforts on the part of the school to improve student performance. You ask, "How does character education improve student performance?"

  • Would greater responsibility on the part of students help?
  • How about better cooperation and increased respect for each other?
  • What if you discovered that the Character Based Learning strategies you employed stimulated a greater interest in learning as well as increased comprehension and retention of information by helping students recognize the relevance of the topics they are studying to their own lives?

The fact is that teaching character education involves helping children develop essential lifeskills that can empower them to make choices that will improve every aspect of their lives.

Mistake Two
Not Focusing on the Cardinal Character Trait Everyone Needs
but Few People Have

Because behaviors are readily observable to us, we tend to think of them as the problem when, in reality, they are merely symptoms of the problem. The root cause behind these behaviors lies in the mind, not in the actions of the individual.

The most important character trait we can teach young people is how to think rightly.

Charles Darwin provided some important insight on this when he wrote in
The Descent of Man

"The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognize that we ought to control our thoughts. . .What ever makes any bad action familiar to the mind, renders its performance so much the easier."

Sign up now in the box to the right and immediately begin receiving seven of the most important lessons any child can ever learn and become part of the conversation on how you can teach the cardinal character trait to the children you teach and help them develop essential lifeskills that will empower them to achieve their full potential..

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