ND Curriculum Initiative

The North Dakota Curriculum Initiative (NDCI) was a long-term professional development program for North Dakota public and non-public school curriculum administrators and teachers. The NDCI ended on December 2013.

Six Pillars of Character Education

For grade(s) 5.

Subject & Standards

Social Studies:

Needs Assessment/Rational

The Six Pillars of Character Counts are aspects that we would hope all adults would instill on their children. Student need has actually created this unit of instruction for me. They are experiencing difficulties getting along with peers. The students themselves, their parents, and their teachers have identified the problem. The process as well as the product very much applies to their lives as elementary students and as human beings. Improving social skills will be an asset to all of them in the future. When the project is completed by the students, it will be of personal value to them, as it will help in clarifying their values as they move towards adolescence. Identifying and thinking about what they stand for will be an invaluable tool as they begin making tough decisions in their lives, along with communicating what they learn through presentations and modeling to younger students. The website http;//www.charactercounts.org/ was utilized throughout the project as a guide. The framework of Character Counts dramatically improved the students involvement and was a valuable asset to the present materials used to complete this project

Understandings & Goals

Enduring Understanding: 1. By giving information tailored to the needs of particular groups, I want them to help solve real life situations and problems as independent learners and problem solvers. Their work with me would then become more relevant and useful in day to day encounters. 2. Also grouping students with simular issues will help to foster good communication and social skills.
Goal(s): 1. Students will explore the Six Pillars of Character Counts to develop positive attitudes and habits for making good decisions in relation to others.  2. Students will model and demonstrate good character to help improve social skills which will become of personal value to them.

Questions Answered

Essential questions:1. Describe one pillar you need to work on to help better yourself? 2. Identify a pillar of character, give its meaning and what it stands for? 3. Choose one pillar that will be a valuable tool when you begin making tough decisions in your life? 4. Describe how this project will create something personal for you? 5. What pillar would you feel most comfortable sharing with younger students? 6. When you identify and model the six pillars, how will it improve your social skills?
Objectives: 1. Given an acronym of one of the six pillars of character, students will be able to describe each letter with a sentence that is fitting with 100% accuracy. 2. Given the Six Pillars of Character Counts, the students will demonstrate a positive attitude in their daily lives and relationships as measured by courtesy and mannerism. 3. Given the opportunity to work in a small group, students will share their knowledge of each pillar appropriately with younger students by modeling their project.

Assessment

What quiz and test items (e.g. simple content-focused questions that require a single, best answer) will provide evidence of understanding? 1.  Matching quiz-each pillar to what it stands for.  2. Acronym quiz-define each letter of one of the pillars.  3. Matching quiz- pictures demonstrating a pillar to its acronym.
What academic prompts (e.g. open-ended questions or problems that require students to think critically and then to prepare a response / product / performance) will provide evidence of understanding?1.  What pillar are you modeling right now?  2. How do you know what pillar you are modeling?  3. How does this pillar pertain to your daily activities and encounters with others?  4. Does this pillar help you to interact appropriately with peer and teachers? What performance tasks and projects (e.g. complex challenges that are authentic, mirror the real world and require a performance or product)will you include that will provide evidence of student understanding? 1.  Students will model traits, and apply each in real life situations.  2. Students will explain traits to groups of younger children.  3. Students will use digital camera to take photos of daily activities that are demonstrating one of the pillars of Character Counts.
What other evidence (e.g. observations, work samples, dialogues, student self-assessment)of understanding will you collect? 1. Teacher observation of behaviors, self assessment rubrics, and work samples of completed project.
2. Students will do a self assessment based on four goals: a)Know the Six Pillars, b)Define, c)Model and d)Role Play. 3. Teachers will also be able to use this rubric assessment on their students. 4. Rubric will be sent with completed project.

Instructional Strategies

A small group of fifth grade students will complete a project based unit on the Six Pillars of Character Counts which are the following: Responsibility, Caring, Respect , Fairness, Citizenship, and Trustworthiness. As they are learning the concepts, they will practice the communication and social skills while preparing a project to explain the pillars to younger students. Students will do the following: (1) Given an acronym of one of the six pillars of character, students will be able to describe each letter with a sentence that is fitting with 100% accuracy. (2)Given the Six Pillars of Character Counts, the students will demonstrate a positive attitude in their daily lives and relationships as measured by courtesy and mannerism. (3) Given the opportunity to work in a small group, students will share their knowledge of each pillar appropriately with younger students by modeling their project.(4) Students will take digital pictures that show how people at Turtle Mountain Elementary School portray each of the pillars.(5) Students will create a cover using Microsoft Paint or Print Artist, then print and bind all documents in booklet form.
*Examples of student work will be sent with completed project.

Lesson Created By

This lesson was created by Justin Wageman. Learn more about Justin Wageman on their profile page.