- Easier - Character is
the combination of personal qualities that make each
person unique. Teachers, parents, and community
members help children build positive character
qualities. For example, the six pillars of character
are trustworthiness, respect, responsibility,
fairness, caring, and citizenship.
- Ethics is the study of human actions. It deals
with issues such as defining "right and wrong" as well
as the gray area in between. Ethics seeks answers to
questions like what is "good behavior" and what should
- Harder - Character
deals with how people think and behave related to
issues such as right and wrong, justice and equity,
and other areas of human conduct.
- Schools often have character education programs
that focus on the qualities of character that are
honored by most cultures and traditions. Character
education is the development of knowledge, skills, and
abilities that encourage children and young adults to
make informed and responsible choices.
- Ethics are a philosophical reflection of moral
beliefs and practices. The Greek and Roman
philosophers were particularly interested in
discussions related to ethics. Religions and faiths
each have their own ethical systems to guide their
people. Ethical decision making involves the process
of making informed decisions when faced with difficult
dilemmas with many alternative solutions.
Whootie: Stories to Grow By
- This website contains lots of stories and a way to
add your own stories and pictures. Whootie Owl
presents fairy tales that promote positive values on
topics such as cooperation, courage, creative
thinking, friendship, generosity, honesty, justice,
kindness, learning, love, perseverance, regret and
recovery, respect for nature, restraint,
self-awareness, and selflessness.
- Other Stories Websites:
- 2) Adventures from the Book of Virtues
- 3) 42explore: Mythology http://eduscapes.com/42explore/myth.htm
- 4) 42explore: Storytelling http://eduscapes.com/42explore/story.htm
- Learn to fortify young people's lives with
consensus ethical values called the "Six Pillars of
Character." These values, which transcend divisions of
race, creed, politics, gender and wealth, are
trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness,
caring and citizenship. This website contains links to
schools that are doing projects related to Character
- Within the Website:
- 2) Resources and Guides http://www.charactercounts.org/guides.htm
- 3) What is Ethics Anyway? http://www.josephsoninstitute.org/MED/medwhatis.htm
- 4) The Six Pillars of Character http://www.josephsoninstitute.org/MED/med6P.htm
- 5) The Making of an Ethical Decision http://www.josephsoninstitute.org/MED/medmaking.htm
- 6) Do's and Don'ts of Character http://www.charactercounts.org/dosdonts.htm
for Global Ethics
- This website contains a number of interesting
projects for students. Each month a new ethnical
dilemma is provided for discussion. The past dilemmas
are archived and include topics such as business,
education, family, medical, philanthropic, personal,
and military. The "Picturing Tomorrow's World" project
for children combines ethics and art. You can also
vote at the moral barometer poll.
- Projects Within this Website:
- 2) Ethical Dilemmas: Right vs. Right http://www.globalethics.org/dilemmas/default.tmpl
- 3) Picturing Tomorrow's World http://www.globalethics.org/ptw/
- Welcome to
- This website celebrates real-world, everyday
heroes who have "stuck their necks out" for others. It
also fosters active citizenship in children. The
website contains hero stories, as well as ideas for
becoming an active citizen.
- Other Hero and Action Projects:
- 2) Any Kid Can Be A Hero Contest http://www.cd-mom.com/comcent/hero.html
- 3) My Hero.com http://myhero.com/
- 4) Academy of Achievement http://www.achievement.org/
- 5) Yahooligans: The Big Picture http://dailynews.yahoo.com/fc/Yahooligans/Great_Kids
- Using the websites, complete the
- Create a Name Poem. Create a
name poem using a word related to ethics
and character such as integrity, trust, or
- Choose a Star. Explore the
a Brilliant Star activity on role
models. Choose a famous person. Do you
think they are a good role model? Why or
why not? Use the 42eXplore:Biography
page for links to more famous people.
- Keep a Character Journal. Start
your journal with a personal mission
statement. Write about how you're striving
to be a person of good character. Each day
write about something you did that
reflected one of the six pillars of
- Start with a Quote. Use the
Unquote and Character
Above All pages to identify an
interesting quote. Write a paragraph about
what the quote means to you. Share the
quote with someone special. Select a quote
that reflects how you feel about a friend
- Build a Pillar Poster. Choose
one of the six
pillars of character such as trust,
worthiness, respect, responsibility,
fairness, caring, and good citizenship.
Create a poster showing why you think this
pillar is so important. Read more about
Pillars of Character and Pillars
2. Watch the Pillars
- Read the Pillars. Explore a
character, and character
books pages. Read a book that
represents at least one of the six pillars
of characters. Discuss this book with an
- Write a Song. Create and
perform a song about the importance of
good character. Try to tell a story in
your song. Videotape your song and send it
to another class.
- Be a Good Sport. What is
sportsmanship? Write a skit about
sportsmanship in a particular sport. Use
Links for ideas.
- Discuss a Dilemma. Read the
Making of an Ethical Decision. Go to
Dilemmas website. Read the current
dilemma or search for past dilemmas.
Discuss how you would react in the
situation. Compare your ideas with others
through an online discussion.
- Ethics Through History. People
have been interested in ethics. Select a
person in history and compare their
philosophies to others. People include
Plato, Aristotle, Epictetus, Marcus
Aurelius, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas,
Montaigne, Thomas Hobbes, Baruch Spinoza,
Thomas Locke, David Hume, John Stuart
Mill, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Bjorn
- Build "A Person of Character"
Bulletin Board. Go to A
Person of Character page. Use these
five statements as the beginning of a
bulletin board. Everyone can add a card
with their favorite character statement or
You could also create a Do's
and Don'ts of Character bulletin
- Defend a Rule. Read the
for Ethical Decision Making. Learn
more about The Golden Rule, Kant's
Categorical Imperatives, and
one to defend.
- Write about a Giraffe. Read
about the heroes at Heroism
in Action and The
Giraffe Project. Visit the web pages
of some of these giraffes.
Write about someone you think is a local
hero. Use the directions on the nomination
page to write up your project.
- Stop the Rationalizations.
Rationalizations can inhibit ethical
decision making. Read about Common
Rationalizations. Choose a
rationalization you've heard before. Write
about why a person might use this
rationalization and how they might be
convinced not to use it.
- Complete a Ethics and Character
WebQuest. Explore one of the webquests
- 1) Character Counts http://www.rvschools.org/lhoffman/CharacterEdWebquest/Character%20Education.htm
- 2) Create a Heroic Character
- 3) Do Aliens Have Ethics? http://education.nmsu.edu/webquest/wq/ethics/
- 4) Explorations http://www.iwebquest.com/greece/greece.htm
- 5) Fables, Myths, and Fairy Tales
- 6) Making a Difference Starts with
- 7) Student Press Law and Ethics
- 8) What is a Hero? http://www.redrival.com/hammink/webquest/hero.htm
- Websites By Kids For Kids
- This fourth grade project focuses on cooperative,
determination, honesty, integrity, perseverance, and
- This student project explores issues related to
knowing yourself and what makes a hero.
Human Ethics (1997 ThinkQuest
- Ethics reflect the values of a society and what
its members judge to be right or wrong. This site
explores what constitutes ethical behavior with a
revealing questionnaire, literary examples, material
on well-known persons who have influenced the stream
- This project focuses on heroes through history and
how people can take action.
Making Choices for Life
- Explore this student project on making good
choices. Learn about values and making decisions.
Do We Care About (1997 ThinkQuest
- This site challenges us to analyze our beliefs and
values, and to take action to make our world a better
place. Visitors can learn about lots of areas in which
to volunteer time: the areas of environment and
wildlife conservation; helping people with
disabilities or depression; educating others about
animal rights and vegetarianism; and helping alleviate
- This fifth grade project focuses on six moral
dilemmas developed by a fifth grade class.
- More Character and Ethics Sites
Above All from PBS Newshour
- This PBS series focuses on presidential leadership
and character. It includes essays, quotes,
discussions, and other information.
Soup for the Teenaged Soul
- This website supports discussions and activities
to help teens deal with relationships, friendships,
and other issues. Based on the book, the website
contains contests, stories, poetry, and
- Related Website:
- 2) Chicken Soup for the Soul http://www.chickensoup.com/
Texts in Ethics
- Read a classic work by someone from the history of
- This website gets students involved with crime
in the Purity of Virtues
- Explore the writings of Susan Kramer on the topics
of compassion, considerations, contentment, courage,
faith and trust, integrity, kindness, love, loyalty,
manners, peacefulness, selfish or self-giving,
steadfastness, tenderness, transformation, and
- This website is a free, online course in ethics
and making ethical choices.
- This glossary contains terms and definitions
related to ethics.
- This web page contains a definition and links to
information about ethics and the history of
Power! (Girls, age 9-14)
- The website's aim is to reinforce and sustain
positive values by targeting health messages to the
unique needs, interests, and challenges of girls.
- Similar Websites:
- 2) DoSomething.org http://www.dosomething.org/
- 3) TeenCentral.com http://www.teencentral.net/
- This website for children focuses on volunteering,
helping careers, and helping the homeless.
- This website focuses on teasing and particular the
special concerns of ill children.
Guide to the Real World
- Several chapters of this book are online. It
explains the immutable facts of life that every
successful adult learns in one way or another.
- Websites For Teachers
Comprehensive Approach to Character
- There are lessons and guides for each of the
Ideas for Character Education
- Use this list of 100 ideas to get started with a
character education thematic unit.
a Brilliant Star
- This project provides an overview of critical
characteristics of a "whole child" and links to
resources to promote ten areas of child
Center for the Advancement of Ethics and
- This website provides resources for parents and
teachers on the topic of character education. It
provides basic principles, resources, and links.
- Specific Pages in Website:
- 2) 100 Ways to Bring Character Education to Life
- 3) The Six E's of Character Ed http://www.bu.edu/education/caec/res6es.html
- This website was developed by teachers interested
in providing a caring, supportive classroom
environment. The site includes lots of activities and
ideas for building a caring classroom.
Education Lesson Plans
- This North Carolina Public School project provides
lesson plans across grade levels and subject
Education: Character Counts
- This website provide a list of traits and matching
children's books and resources.
- This website recognizes excellent character
education programs and resources. It also states 11
principles of character education programs. They give
annual awards to schools involved with character
- Related Websites:
- 2) Character Education Center http://www.ethicsusa.com/
- 3) Character Education in California http://www.cde.ca.gov/character/
- 4) Character Education Homepage http://www.usoe.k12.ut.us/curr/char_ed/
- 5) Center for Character Development http://www.charactercenter.com/
- 6) Center for Civil Education http://www.civiced.org/
- This is a good starting point for information on
character education. It contains sections for each
grade level as well as sports and other specialty
Education: Teaching Kids to Care
- This project provides a nice introduction to
character education. This site provides a series of
activities for teachers at the primary, intermediate,
and upper levels.
- Specific Pages in Website:
- 2) Strategies for Empowering Students http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/ce/strat-index.html
Ideas to Help Young People Develop Good
- This website provides sample lessons and ideas for
ages 4-6, 6-9, 9-11, 11-13, and teenagers.
Self Lesson Plans
- Here you find lesson plans for problem solving,
becoming assertive, and presenting a positve attitude
for a job interview.
Acts of Kindess
- This website provides lots of ideas for joining
the "kindness" movement including planning for
- Created by