As I kissed my children goodbye this morning and watched them enter the new classrooms for a new year I found myself wondering about their learning.
There is a lot of talk in education circles about results and how to obtain the best ones.
There is a lot of talk in education circles about effective teachers and how to be one.
There is a lot of talk in education circles about the best school and what makes one.
There is also growing talk about character and values teaching and what a difference this makes.
In 2013 Dr Anthony Seldon gave a lecture “Why the development of character is more important than exam results in schools.”
Paul Tough wrote a book ‘How children succeed’ suggesting there are seven elements of success –
grit, self-control, zest, social intelligence, gratitude, optimism and curiosity.
In Birmingham, England there is ‘The Jubilee Centre‘ where educators are looking at the importance of good character and how that can be taught.
2 key beliefs of the centre are:
*Virtues that make up good character can be learnt and taught and these have been largely neglected by schools and professionals (I would also add ‘and parents’).
*The more people with good character and virtues – the healthier our society.
(If you are near and interested on Monday 10 February 7.00pm, Memorial Hall, St Peter’s College, Adelaide, there will be a lecture delivered by Professor James Arthur. Head of the School of Education and Professor of Education and Civic Engagement and Director of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Values focusing on the topic of Character Education.)
Learning is such a powerful tool. Our children are so ripe for learning. In this world of exam and test results may I encourage you to think about the character teaching and learning that is happening – it is a challenge for our world of today. I am still thinking of how this looks in practice… What does that mean for my kids as they start a new year of learning?