This month in St. Johns' innovative character education program, Character Foundations, students from age 3 through Grade 12 will be learning about and practicing individuality, which is defined as discovering who you are meant to be.
You can reinforce Character Foundations lessons at home by helping your student learn to Say It, Know It, See It, and Be It:
Help your younger Spartan learn to say it:
Individuality means discovering who you are meant to be.
Grown-ups, ask a kid:
- Think of all of the things you enjoy doing. Do you like to draw, hike, swim, put puzzles together, make slime, bake, etc.? Think of how these interests and talents can help you make a difference in the lives of others.
- Are there activities that you are interested in, would like to learn more about, or would like to give a try? Talk with your parents and see if you can explore and discover these options. Trying new things can help you find out what you are good at and what you are meant to do.
Kids, ask a grown up:
- How old were you when you discovered what you wanted to be as an adult
- What experiences helped you discover who you are and who you are meant to be?
- What does it mean to you to make a difference?
The Disney movie Moana is a great story about a girl who is in search of who she is meant to be. Watch this short clip from the movie. Discuss the words and ideas that Moana and her grandmother use to describe who Moana is truly meant to be.
One night this month, sit down as a family and have everyone complete an interest inventory. An example of a good, free interest profile can be found right here. There are 60 items on the inventory that assess a person’s likes and dislikes. Once the inventory is complete, you are asked how much education you are interested in completing. After education level has been selected, it generates a comprehensive list of jobs that are tailored specifically to the individual. This can be used as a tool to help discover who you are meant to be and how you can make a difference in the world.
It's a great idea to reinforce Character Foundations lessons by reading books about individuality at home. Your child can also stop by the Heinrich Learning Resource Center to check out the display of books about individuality. Here are some titles to get you started:
- Penguin’s Hidden Talent by Alex Latimer (Pre-K3-1)
- Not All Princesses Dress in Pink by Jane Yolen (Pre-K3-1)
- You Matter by Christian Robinson (Pre-K3-1)
- Being You by Peter H. Reynolds (Pre-K3-1)
- The Colors of Us by Karen Katz (PreS-2)
- Be Who You Are by Todd Parr (PreS-2)
- Perfectly Norman by Tom Percival (PreS-2)
- Mixed Me! by Taye Diggs (K-2)
- A Girl Like Me by Angela Johnson (K-2)
- Wild About Us by Karen Beaumont (K-2)
- Zero by Kathryn Otoshi (K-2)
- Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall (K-2)
- Eyes that Kiss in the Corners by Joana Ho (K-3)
- Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell (K-5)
- Spork by Kyo Maclear (K-5)
- Suki’s Kimono by Chieri Uegaki (K-5)
- Oliver Button is a Sissy by Tomie DePaola (K-5)
- I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes (1-5)
- Where Are You From? by Yamile Saied Mendez (1-5)
- Black is a Rainbow Color by Angela Joy (1-5)
- The Noisy Paintbox: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art by Barb Rosenstock (1-5)
Middle & Upper School
- Schooled by Korman (Grades 6+)
- The Giver by Lowry (Grades 6+)
- Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli (Grades 6+)
- Stand Tall by Joan Bauer (Grades 6+)
- I am the Cheese by Cormier (Grades 7+)
- Roadside Assistance by Amy Clipston (Grades 9+)
- Faith Hope and Ivy June by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (Grades 6+)
- Ask the Passengers by AS King (Grades 9+)