Kids learn to do good outside classroom
When Marion fourth grade student Trent Sprowls thinks about acting with good character, he considers how he behaves at home as well as school.
“I have to do that with my little brother,” he said. “I have to show him what is good vs. what’s wrong. If he needs help with something then I show him like, ‘do this, but I’ll show you how to do it so you can do it next time on your own.’ Stuff like that.”
Marion Elementary School has been awarding “character coupons” and stickers for several years as part of its character education program, but decided to go a step further this year, counselor Kris Burkholder said.
“We want the kids to realize character is something you build on and do every day,” she said. “Your character is something you do when no one is watching. You don’t do it just to get a character coupon.”
Character ed makes it easier to make friends, fifth-grade student Brylee Smith said, but she admitted that some exhibits of good character are tougher than others.
“It’s easier to open a door, or to give your spot up in line and not argue while knowing that it’s the right thing,” Brylee said.
Now the school is recognizing students who demonstrate good character regularly, which promotes the consistent behavior Burkholder hopes to see.
“Now it’s kind of turned into our way of life at MES,” she said. “The kids act this way and they expect others to act this way. I think it’s really changed the climate at MES in a positive way.”
When it becomes something people aren’t doing for recognition, then it starts to become part of their attitude Trent said.
“You don’t necessarily have to think about it,” he said. “You just have to have that mindset to do good things even when you’re not told to.”
Last modified Nov. 19, 2020