Kingston Primary School is proud to have embraced the Virtues Project – a holistic approach to character education. The Leschenault Alliance of Public Schools and many schools in the Bunbury region use the five strategies of the Virtues Project to foster a shared vision of the culture of their school, and provide simple tools to use every day to make character education a natural part of the child’s experience.
Each fortnight, our school focuses on a specific virtue, which is targeted through our classroom activities and involvement in the Resilience Project.
The Five Strategies of the Virtues Project are:
Speak the Language of the Virtues
Language has the ability to empower or discourage. Self-esteem is built when shaming or blaming language is replaced by naming the virtues, our innate qualities of character.
These virtues include:
At Kingston Primary School, virtues are used to acknowledge, guide and correct. The language of the virtues also helps us remember what kind of people we want to be.
Recognise Teachable Moments
This strategy is a way of viewing life as an opportunity for learning, recognising our mistakes, and our tests and challenges, as opportunities to hone our virtues.
It is an approach to bringing out the best in each other by asking, “What can I learn from this situation?” “What do I need to do differently next time?” And, “How can I make it right?”
Set Clear Boundaries
Clear boundaries, connected to a shared vision of the virtues with which we want to treat one another, help to prevent violence and create a safe learning environment.
This strategy offers a positive approach to discipline, emphasising both assertiveness and restorative justice. It helps us to identify what bottom-line behaviours will not be tolerated, as well as how amends can be made.
Honour the Spirit
School spirit grows through simple practices that illumine our sense of values. School-wide practices and celebrations make special events meaningful. This strategy helps us to address the spiritual dimension in a way that respects our diversity.
This is an art and skill, which supports healing, encourages moral choice, and allows the safe expression of feelings. It helps in counselling, conflict resolution, and disciplinary situations.
Companioning helps us to get to the heart of the matter when individuals are in grief or crisis. It involves presence and listening, and asking clarifying questions, which allow individuals to empty their cup, and then resolve their own problems with the help of the virtues.