Lincoln Public Schools

 

K-12 Character Education Program Goals

The Lincoln Public Schools Character Education Program supports the Board of Education Mission Statement and the LPS Goals for Students.

Character Education Program Philosophy:

The K-12 Character Education Program, through partnerships with home and community, strives to develop the strength of character, the skills, and the knowledge necessary to produce responsible citizens, prepared to live in a diverse and ever-changing world.

Key Attributes of the Program:

  • Collaborative relationships between schools, parents, and community organizations are developed to provide students with the tools needed to become ethical, responsible adults.
  • Character Education is infused into every aspect of the school culture, curriculum, and extra-curricular activities.
  • The School Community intentionally teaches and models core character traits that foster an environment where habits of good character are practiced.
  • The universal character traits emphasized, transcend political, cultural, religious and ideological distinctions.

Major Goals:

The development of character is an essential part of the K-12 curriculum. The core traits and skills are integrated into the various curriculum areas and emphasized by all teachers at all levels. The student goals for the Character Education Program are:

  1. Selects and uses age appropriate behavior
  2. Selects and uses age-appropriate coping skills
  3. Demonstrates confidence in self
  4. Interacts with others appropriately

The Character Education Program major goals are further defined by performance objectives and core traits. All students work toward mastery of the following objectives:

1. SELECTS AND USES AGE APPROPRIATE BEHAVIORS

  • Considers alternatives and accepts consequences for actions taken.
    • Responsibility
    • Respect
  • Learns when to demonstrate assertive behavior.
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
    • Respect
  • Demonstrates self-discipline/control.
    • Self-control
  • Demonstrates ability to respond to criticism.
    • Self-control
    • Respect
  • Demonstrates ability to follow rules and laws.
    • Citizenship
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
    • Respect

2. SELECTS AND USES AGE-APPROPRIATE COPING SKILLS

  • Recognizes and positively acts on the need for help.
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
  • Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
    • Perseverance
    • Fairness
    • Trustworthiness
    • Caring
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
  • Demonstrates decision-making skills.
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
  • Develops and applies stress-management skills.
    • Perseverance
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
  • Recognizes positive aspects in all situations.
    • Caring
    • Self-control
  • Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
    • Citizenship
    • Perseverance
    • Trustworthiness
    • Caring
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
    • Respect
  • Demonstrates organizational skills.
    • Responsibility

3. DEMONSTRATES CONFIDENCE IN SELF

  • Recognizes and accepts own abilities and limitations.
    • Self-control
  • Demonstrates positive attitude toward self.
    • Caring
    • Respect
  • Demonstrates ability to express personal feelings and ideas to others.
    • Caring
    • Respect

4. INTERACTS WITH OTHERS APPROPRIATELY

  • Develops and maintains friendships.
    • Perseverance
    • Caring
    • Trustworthiness
    • Responsibility
  • Develops and displays communication skills.
    • Fairness
    • Responsibility
    • Respect
  • Demonstrates respect for individual rights.
    • Citizenship
    • Caring
    • Respect
  • Recognizes and accepts cultural and individual differences.
    • Citizenship
    • Fairness
    • Caring
    • Respect
  • Allows others opportunities to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
    • Fairness
    • Caring
    • Respect
  • Develops and maintains family relationships.
    • Trustworthiness
    • Caring
    • Self-control
    • Responsibility
    • Respect
  • Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.
    • Citizenship
    • Fairness
    • Caring
    • Responsibility
    • Respect

Character Trait Definitions

Trustworthiness
• Be honest.
• Don’t deceive, cheat or steal.
• Be reliable-do what you say you’ll do.
• Have the courage to do the right thing.
• Build a good reputation.
• Be loyal-stand by your family, friends, and
country.

Respect
• Treat others with respect
• Be tolerant of differences. Be accepting.
• Use good manners, not bad language.
• Be considerate of the feelings of others.
• Don’t threaten, hit, or hurt anyone.
• Deal peacefully with anger, insults, and
disagreements.
• Use active listening.

Responsibility
• Do what you are supposed to do.
• Always do your personal best!
• Put forth your best effort.
• Be self-disciplined.
• Think before you act-consider the
consequences.
• Be accountable for your choices.
• Be patient.
• Learn how to problem solve.

Perseverance
• Develop a plan; set goals
• Keep focused
• Take the initiative
• Look for options
• Be patient
• Try again!

Fairness
• Play by the rules.
• Take turns and share.
• Be open-minded; listen to others.
• Don’t take advantage.
• Don’t blame others carelessly.
• Be flexible.

Caring
• Be kind.
• Be compassionate and show you care.
• Express gratitude.
• Forgive others.
• Help people in need.
• Be generous.

Self-Control
• Avoid acting on impulses
• Consider alternative solutions
• Do the right thing
• Wait your turn
• Follow the rules
• Accept consequences
• Be assertive, not aggressive

Citizenship
• Do your share to make your school and community better.
• Cooperate.
• Stay informed; vote.
• Be a good neighbor.
• Obey laws and rules.
• Respect authority.
• Protect the environment.
• Use common sense.
• Take the initiative; be self-motivated.
• Volunteer

Character Education Traits and Objectives

Citizenship
Demonstrates ability to follow rules and laws.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Demonstrates respect for individual rights.
Recognizes and accepts cultural and individual differences.
Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.

Perseverance
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Develops and applies stress-management skills.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Develops and maintains friendships.

Caring
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Recognizes positive aspects in all situations.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Demonstrates positive attitude toward self.
Demonstrates ability to express personal feelings and ideas to others.
Develops and maintains friendships.
Demonstrates respect for individual rights.
Allows others opportunities to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
Develops and maintains family relationships.
Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.

Self-Control
Learns when to demonstrate assertive behavior.
Demonstrates self-discipline/control.
Demonstrates ability to respond to criticism.
Demonstrates ability to follow rules and laws.
Recognizes and positively acts on the need for help.
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Demonstrates decision-making skills.
Develops and applies stress-management skills.
Recognizes positive aspects in all situations.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Recognizes and accepts own abilities and limitations.
Develops and maintains family relationships.

Fairness
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Develops and displays communication skills.
Recognizes and accepts cultural and individual differences.
Allows others opportunities to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.

Trustworthiness
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Develops and maintains friendships.
Develops and maintains family relationships.

Responsibility
Considers alternatives and accepts consequences for actions taken.
Learns when to demonstrate assertive behavior.
Demonstrates ability to follow rules and laws.
Recognizes and positively acts on the need for help.
Demonstrates problem-solving skills.
Demonstrates decision-making skills.
Develops and applies stress-management skills.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Demonstrates organizational skills.
Develops and maintains friendships.
Develops and displays communication skills.
Develops and maintains family relationships.
Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.

Respect
Considers alternatives and accepts consequences for actions taken.
Learns when to demonstrate assertive behavior.
Demonstrates ability to respond to criticism.
Demonstrates ability to follow rules and laws.
Demonstrates ability to deal with peer pressure.
Demonstrates positive attitude toward self.
Demonstrates ability to express personal feelings and ideas to others.
Develops and displays communication skills.
Demonstrates respect for individual rights.
Recognizes and accepts cultural and individual differences.
Allows others opportunities to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
Develops and maintains family relationships.
Leads, follows, and works cooperatively with others.

District Curriculum:
Skills for Growing is the board approved curriculum used in Lincoln Public Schools, grades K-6. This comprehensive program brings together parents, educators, and members of the community to teach children important life skills within a caring and consistent environment. The program teaches skills in four main areas:
• Self-discipline
• Responsibility
• Good judgment
• Respect for others

A basic aim of the program is to develop a support system for children that involves the home, the school, and the community working together. The program’s major goals are to:
• Develop and support a positive learning environment
•Teach social and thinking skills
• Involve parents as partners
• Promote community involvement
• Foster learning through service to others
• Promote a drug-free approach to living
• Develop and support positive peer groups
• Celebrate and respect cultural diversity
• Provide support for parents, educators, and community members

Lions-Quest Skills For Growing was developed and is supported by Lions Clubs International, the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), the National PTA, and Quest International.

Optional Curriculum:

Character Counts! is used by many elementary teachers throughout the district. The use of this curriculum is optional. The purpose of the Character Counts! program is to teach the consensus ethical values called the “Six Pillars of Character.” These values, which transcend divisions of race, creed, politics, gender and wealth, are:
• Trustworthiness
• Respect
• Responsibility
• Fairness
• Caring
• Citizenship

Character Counts! was developed and is supported by the Josephson Institute of Ethics. In Lincoln, the 4-H, a part of the University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension and the Rotary Club of Lincoln, #14, have made training and materials available to Lincoln Public Schools educators.

Skills For Growing and Character Counts! have been integrated into the K-2 LPS correlated curriculum. In grades 3-6, Skills For Growing and Character Counts! have been correlated with LPS social studies and health curriculum. Bibliographies listing literacy connections to the Six Pillars and character education themes are available for all grade levels.

Using Skills for Growing with Diverse Student Populations

In Lincoln Public Schools, students come from a variety of racial, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds. Their achievement levels may cover a wide spectrum and some students may require special attention. Skills for Growing was designed to create a learning environment based on the needs of all children-an environment where everyone is needed and important. Skills for Growing supports, encourages, and celebrates diversity. The program provides students with the social and thinking skills to help them maintain this positive attitude and supportive environment.

The literature suggested for use with the LPS Character Education Program is representative of students from all cultures and races. The books listed can easily be used with the character education curriculum to support the district’s multicultural education plan.

School to Careers Infusion

The Skills for Growing and Character Counts! materials used in the LPS Character Education program are designed to help all students develop the behaviors and coping skills needed to become caring, capable, and contributing members of society. By teaching the skills and behaviors that support self-discipline, responsibility, good judgment, and respect for others, the program helps children prepare for the responsibilities of family life, citizenship and employment in the 21st century.

The requirements for success in the workplace have been consistently identified as including:
• High ethical standards
• Interpersonal and teamwork skills
• Positive attitudes toward work, learning, and personal health
• Communication and problem-solving skills
• Cultural sensitivity
The LPS Character Education Program supports these requirements and therefore prepares all students for potential success in the workplace.