At Barbers Hill ISD, we believe that it is an entire community's responsibility to help students grow into kind and compassionate adults. We also know how challenging this can be in the current climate of social media and other distractions. In a time when testing and academics feel like the most important aspect of educations, we can lose focus on investing in the whole child and the habits and traits that make them successful in all areas of life.
We are happy to announce that our district believes in the importance of character development and social emotional learning to ensure a focus on the whole child! We have adopted the CharacterStrong curriculum built around these "Eight Essential" character traits and the social-emotional skills that have been proven to help us be productive, empathetic, successful people. We all will be working together to build a kinder school culture and, ultimately, a kinder world.
Each week, students will be given a new challenge that helps them to practice one of the eight character traits in their daily lives. The following week they are given an opportunity to reflect on their experience, either with trying the Dare or by sharing what they think or believe about that week's CharacterDare.
CharacterDare Example: See the Good
Carefully observe those with whom your interact, and identify something positive you can acknowledge. Give a genuine and thoughtful compliment based on your observations.
Sometimes, we can catch ourselves noticing the negatives around us without taking a pause to see the good, too. After taking the time to see good in someone else, take the time to share with that person what you noticed and the impact they have on others and yourself.
During their Advisory class, students and staff will work together through lessons that equip them with ways to understand, practice, or reflect on one of the eight essentials and their own character. Every lesson is written by educators with all students' abilities, backgrounds, and needs in mind.
Students are not the only ones challenged to live more intentionally! Every adult on campus will also be provided opportunities to put into practice the Eight Essentials with a weekly Staff CharacterDare. We know that students will watch what we do more than they will listen to what we say and leading by example is the best way to change school culture.
We encourage you to engage your students in conversations about their CharacterStrong experience.
- Ask for the CharacterDare of the week and see how many you can take on as a family.
- Share things you are grateful for and reflect on your own learning regarding these ideas.
- Tell stories about moments of growth you have had as an adult or when you were their age and faced with situations that connect to the week's CharacterDare.
We are excited that our district is taking on the important work of character development and social-emotional learning. We believe in the power of this work and we have no doubt that, with this common goal in mind, that we are creating a more caring, compassionate, capable world. We look forward to hearing all the amazing ways your student is growing.