Douglas County School System Releases 'Character Words' for 2012-2013

The Douglas County School System is focused on character and this year's Character Words list starts with School pride and ends with Accomplishment.

Character Education is more important today than ever and it is never too late to start reinforcing concepts for young people. No matter what the circumstances, or who is involved, everyone can benefit from character education.  

What is character education? What is the purpose? Character Education teaches specific traits in a manner that will help children and youth develop positive characteristics which foster self-controlled, respectful individuals, who think before they act and consider the consequences of their actions before deciding what direction those actions will take.

The strives to build a common set of values among students, staff, and the community by focusing each week on a different character concept. Part of the kindergarten through twelfth grade curriculum, schools are not only teaching about character concepts but are also encouraging students to apply the traits in their daily lives.

Students are also involved in many character building activities that help our community such as the collection and donation of canned goods during the holidays and participation in charities such as United Way and Relay for Life. Several schools have sponsored Red Cross blood drives in their communities.
The state has adopted a set of character concepts that schools utilize with the students.

The character words for the 2012-2013 school year are listed below.
Week of August
6th - School pride: The proper delight or satisfaction in your school’s achievements and status
13th- Punctuality: Being on time, prompt; arriving at the right time
20th- Commitment: Devotion or dedication to a cause, person, relationship
27th- Gratitude: The feeling of being thankful or showing appreciation towards others

Week of September
3rd- Honesty: Being truthful and fair
10th- Patience: Power to wait calmly without complaining
17th- Sportsmanship: The ability to take winning or losing without gloating or complaining
24th- Self Control: The willpower to control actions and emotions

Week of October
1st- Respect for authority: Valuing and respecting others in official positions
15th- Self-respect: Demonstrating a positive opinion of one’s self
22nd- Trustworthiness: Dependable and reliable
29th- Reliability: Deserving of trust and confidence

Week of November  
5th- Patriotism: Respect and devotion to one’s country
12th- Truthfulness: Freedom from falseness
26th-Cooperation: Working together for a common purpose

Week of December  
3rd- Cheerfulness: Being good humored, bright and pleasant

10th- Kindness: Being friendly, considerate, and willing to help others
17th- Generosity: Willing to share and not be selfish

Week of January
8th- Fairness: Being honest and just
14th- Citizenship: Demonstrating individual rights and privileges as citizens of the United States
21st- Tolerance: Respecting the individual differences, views, and beliefs of others
28th- Courtesy: Polite and well mannered toward others

Week of February
4th- Compassion: Showing concern and sympathy for others
11th- Loyalty: True and faithful to love, promise, duty, or other obligations
25th- Equality: The right and opportunity to develop one’s potential

Week of March
4th- Perseverance: Working hard without giving up
11th- Courage: Meeting a challenge without giving into fear
18th- Creativity: Having imagination and inventiveness
25th- Diligence: Working hard in a careful, steady manner

Week of April  
1st- Determination: Carrying out a purpose with great willpower and purpose
15th- Integrity: Adherence to a code of values
22nd- Respect for the Environment: Understanding and appreciating our responsibility to the environment
29th- Cleanliness: Maintaining neatness and tidiness

Week of May
6th- Appreciation: The expression of admiration, gratitude, or value
13th- Self-reliance: Relying on one’s own abilities, efforts, or judgments
20th - Accomplishment: Appreciation for attaining one’s goals
27th- Review of all words

Hifi July 29, 2012 at 06:05 PM
Right! Who could be against anything as grand sounding as character education? Well, unless there was a conclusive study about it which proves that it does absolutely nothing except waste time and money. October 2010, a federal study, the largest and most thorough ever conducted, found that school-wide Character Education programs produce exactly ZERO improvements in student behavior or academic performance. It's no surprise. Besides the fact that there is no theoretical basis for character education, just take a look at the lists of values and goals of the dozens of competing CE offerings. The lack of agreement between the lists is one of the most damning aspects of character education! It also becomes obvious that the majority of the values follow a conservative agenda, concerned with conformity, submitting to authority, not making a fuss... One thing all these programs do agree on is what values are NOT included on their lists of core values. Not found, even though they are fundamental to the history and success of our nation are such noted values as independence, calculated risk, ingenuity, curiosity, critical thinking, skepticism, and even moderation. "Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!" the famous saying by Ms. Frizzle on the much celebrated TV show, The Magic School Bus, embodies values that would be antithetical to those found in today’s character education. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Character_education#Issues_and_controversies
Marsi Thrash July 30, 2012 at 05:48 AM
When the bullying ads came on the radio earlier this year, my Montessori-schooled 7 year old asked, "What's a bully?" After explaining, he was dumbfounded that anyone would behave that way, let alone get away with it. I don't know what goes on in the public schools here, but I do know that the Montessori method of education focuses on the whole child. They learn physical and social boundaries and respect from the time they join. In our case, that was 18 months old. They have a peace talk table, which is used when 2 children can't work out a problem. A teacher mediates, but the children ultimately work out their differences with guidance. They own their problems, and they own their solutions. They learn to say, "When you did this to me, it made me feel. . ." How many adults spend thousands of dollars in therapy to learn that? Wouldn't we all be better off if we learned it at the same age we were potty-training? At our school, character isn't taught, it's modeled. And expected. (Again, I am not criticizing the public schools, as we are not a part. Just sharing our experience, which works.)


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