Character Education Program
The focus of our Character Education and Ambassadors programs are:
The 7 Habits of Happy Kids by Sean Covey.
Habit 1: Be Proactive - You're in Charge
I am a responsible person. I take initiative. I choose my actions, attitudes, and moods. I do not blame others for my wrong actions. I do the right thing without being asked, even when no one is looking.
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind - Have a Plan
I plan ahead and set goals. I do things that have meaning and make a difference. I am an important part of my classroom and contribute to my school’s mission. I look for ways to be a good citizen.
Habit 3: Put First Things First - Work First, Then Play
I spend my time on things that are most important. This means I say no to things I know I should not do. I set priorities, make a schedule, and follow my plan. I am disciplined and organized.
Habit 4: Think Win-Win - Everyone Can Win
I balance courage for getting what I want with consideration for what others want. I make deposits in others’ Emotional Bank Accounts. When conflicts arise, I look for third alternatives.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood - Listen Before You Talk
I listen to other people’s ideas and feelings. I try to see things from their viewpoints. I listen to others without interrupting. I am confident in voicing my ideas. I look people in the eyes when talking.
Habit 6: Synergize - Together is Better
I value other people’s strengths and learn from them. I get along well with others, even people who are different than me. I work well in groups. I seek out other people’s ideas to solve problems because I know that by teaming with others we can create better solutions than any one of us alone.
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw - Balance Feels Best
I take care of my body by eating right, exercising, and getting sleep. I spend time with my family and friends. I learn in lots of ways and lots of places, not just at school. I take time to find meaningful ways to help others.
What is Character Education?
Character education is the development of knowledge, skills, and abilities that enable the learner to make informed and responsible choices. Character development provides a foundation upon which we can build respect for human dignity and create twenty-first-century schools that will empower students to achieve excellence. Good character does not develop spontaneously. Character education is the deliberate effort to help children understand, care about, and act upon core values. It encourages them to think critically and then act responsibly. Instructional materials, methods, and strategies, when developed into interdisciplinary curricular themes, empower teachers to create meaning while allowing students time for purposeful exploration and self-reflection. Positive character must be defined, recognized and applied. Preparing students to make good choices is a responsibility that is shared by home, school and the community at large.
(Adapted from the, Urban Programs Resource Network and the Mechanicville Character Education manual.)
The plan under development by the GC Character Education Committee begins by creating a peaceful environment for our children. Our goal is that everyone; teachers, staff, students, and families take ownership and actively participate in the plan.
Together, we can develop the strong character and good citizenship of our children.
A full description of our Character Education program at Gordon Creek can be found in the Parent Handbook sent home with students. A copy of the handbook is below.
Our Gordon Creek School Rules:
Be Safe, Be Respectful and Be Responsible
This is a promise that the children and staff make daily. It is our job as educators to relate daily situations back to this promise in order to help children make real life connections and follow through with being kind, safe, and doing their very best.
Are you being kind right now? Is that a safe choice? Is that your very best?
These are simple questions we can refer to throughout the day.
Voice Levels in Common Areas:
Level 0……..No talking
Level 2….Conversation (Inside Voice)
Level 3……Playground (Outside Voice)
Whole Body Listening: Give Me 5!
1) My eyes are watching.
2) My ears are listening.
3) My lips are sealed.
4) My hands are still.
5) My feet are quiet.
At school-wide gatherings, this concept will be reinforced. A presenter may say, “Give me 5” and then hold up 5 fingers. Counting down to 1 finger when all children should be displaying whole body listening.