Use of the Six Pillars of Character at home provides an environment of high expectations on the behavior and attitude of youth, while providing a caring and nurturing relationship with the most important influence on a child’s character, their family.

The use of the Pillars helps the child see the relationship between home and school expectations as it relates to parental rules, home responsibilities (i.e. chores) and the interactions between adults and children in the home.

It also provides a basis for enlightening discussions in those moments when a child’s decision (whether good or questionable) can be a great “teachable moment”.

Here are some tips to help you teach character:

Teach children that their character counts.
Explain that their success and happiness depend on who they are inside, not on what they have or look like.  Teach them the difference between right and wrong and guide their thoughts and actions by the Six Pillars of Character (trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship).  Explain these words and use examples from your own life, history and the news.

Encourage the Six Pillars of Character
Reward good behavior (usually praise is enough) and discourage bad behavior by imposing fair, consistent consequences (or allowing others to do so).  Demonstrate courage and firmness of will by encourage these core values even when it is difficult or costly to do so.

Advocate Character
Continually encourage children to live up to the Six Pillars of Character.  Don’t be neutral about the importance of character, and don’t be casual about improper conduct.  Be clear and uncompromising that you expect your children to be trustworthy, respectful, fair, caring and good citizens.

Model Good Behavior
Everything you say and do (or neglect to do) sends a message about your values.  Be sure that these messages reinforce your lessons about doing the right thing, even when it is difficult.  When you slip, be accountable; apologize sincerely and do better!



For assistance with family initiatives, contact our office at 515-271-2910

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