Participants also benefit from the collective experience and the realisation that they are valuable assets to each other. Teachers frequently notice how their pupils become keener to work alongside them and reach out to and support their companions for the benefit of everyone in the group.
Discussion is an important feature that expands awareness and provides a rich source of learning. Within a deliberately safe, supportive classroom environment, children and young people can pluck up the courage to think outside the box, voice their views and try out their ideas.
By looking into the ramifications of different values in a range of contexts and their positive and negative effects, historically, currently and for the future, learners make connections and become increasingly aware of the potential impacts from selected values. This insight gently stretches minds and helps individuals make well considered, informed choices, including those involving an element of risk.
By way of illustration, one day a very experienced values-based education teacher found that a well-built pupil on the brink of exclusion was being given a last chance to change his attitude and joining her class. The newcomer was shocked by the warm welcome he received from his unfamiliar classmates. Never before had he experienced such attentiveness. He gradually took on more responsibility for his learning and started contributing to school life, becoming a real asset. His organisational abilities and newly acquired interpersonal skills, along with his natural energy and willingness to help led directly to the school winning inter-school trophies for football, cricket, rounders and hockey.
Exciting contemporary education - 10 motivational keys
Both children and adults require emotional support and respond positively to encouragement, love and a belief in what they are capable of. The ten MOTIVATION letters below provide a framework for demonstrating how a sustained focus on values can inspire children and young people so that they acquire tools to navigate successfully through each day, all the while uncovering and utilising their personal gifts and talents. This strategy also challenges teachers and others guiding, coaching and mentoring their charges because the process opens up participants’ hearts, minds and spiritual capacities and sometimes, as described above, leads to surprisingly unexpected revelations, ideas and outcomes.