6 Building Blocks

Six Building Blocks of Values Infusion

Teachers should incorporate the Values Code words into lessons and interactions with students at least 12 times a day. Therefore I, the teacher, promise to serve as a role model for the Values Code and proactively infuse values into my teaching throughout the day:

  • Mini Lessons: Develop written exercises or discussions to define each value in a relevant way. (i.e. "Why do you want an honest friend?")
  • Tapestry: Weave the Values Code into all learning and discussions throughout each day. Find opportunities to point out the importance of following the Values Code by relating the values to specific situations in students' everyday life experiences.
  • Values in Action: At least once a week, create a specific assignment for students to use the values outside of school. (i.e. community service work, volunteering, helping a sibling, etc.)
  • Self-Discipline: Instead of using criticism and strict enforcement, consistently use instruction that incorporates reflection, and self-behavior modification exercises. (i.e. "Write about which Values Code would have helped you in this situation?" and "why?")
  • Parental Involvement: Provide students with one Values Code card to be placed at home on the refrigerator and one for their desk or notebook at school. Periodically check, with a show of hands, to see if the Values Code cards are in place. Send weekly assignments home to encourage dialogue between parents and students about a specific value. (i.e. "Mom, why is it important to be concerned about other people?" or "Dad, how have you demonstrated hard work in your life?") Finally, have weekly class discussions or journal writing assignments to discuss family feedback on the assigned value. This follow-up is key to ensuring that students discuss values at home.
  • Praise and Recognition: Be vigilant about openly praising and recognising students as often as possible when you see them demonstrating good values. (i.e. verbally, stickers, certificates, etc.)

Who We Are

ValuesFirst a non-religious, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is a character education initiative created by a group of District of Columbia teachers, students, and principals. The Values Code Initiative centers on training teachers, principals, and staff in building character in children by instilling in them the importance of values in their everyday lives.