Hints and tips for transformative values education

Rosemary Dewan

Rosemary Dewan is the CEO of the Human Values Foundation which promotes the importance of teaching human values in schools. Since 1995 it has been providing practical, cross-curricular programmes for personal development and behaviour management, integrating SMSC, PSHE education, Citizenship, PLTS and SEAL.

Follow @HVF_Values

Website: www.humanvaluesfoundation.com Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Socrates said, “Education is not the filling of a vessel but the kindling of a flame.” What a pleasure it is watching that flame glow, especially if you have been instrumental in fanning the spark by helping the child or young person to be happy and well motivated.

Experience shows that when teaching is actively underpinned with positive, uplifting values, children become enthused and engaged, resulting in profound improvements in their wellbeing and an extensive range of exhilarating rewards for the individuals, with the benefits rubbing off on their families, schools and communities.

First and foremost – your own values and principles

In our rapidly changing world, from time to time you may find it well worth while stepping back to think about the values and principles that you live by and the consequential messages you are transmitting to all those around you. Children will be scrutinizing your every move - and copying you! Amongst your personal and professional goals, do you aim to be an inspiring role model, continuously fostering an enjoyable learning environment conducive to bringing out the best in your pupils?

A productive habit to encourage is the consideration of values. It promotes self-discovery. Whatever your specialist area, focusing on values and providing relevant, fun-filled exploration of them enhances understanding and opens up stimulating pathways towards participants putting them into practice and achieving exciting differences in their emotional wellbeing, social competencies, health, mindsets and performance. If you think back to influential teachers in your own life, your example can affect all aspects of the personal life of your pupils, throughout their school careers and well beyond – including as parents of the future.

This reflective and forward-looking exercise can result in advancing from a state of AWARENESS about the effects of chosen values – consciously or unconsciously – to a state of PREPAREDNESS to deliver and embed motivational, transformational values.

Preparation

As with so much achieved in life, vision and preparation are key. A quality, comprehensive values education programme will provide you with the underlying philosophy together with succinct advice and guidance. It will save you time with imaginative and innovative ideas on how to incorporate rewarding values into your school’s ethos and environment and open up rich sources of learning opportunities that draw on the entire breadth of the curriculum.

A whole-school approach knits the community together and engenders the sharing of best practices. Whatever your experience, you can look forward to gaining a more thorough understanding of the empowering process and relish being equipped with plenty of engaging activities, discussion points and practical yet flexible materials so that you can confidently, creatively and effectively contribute to and support learners’ development as you:

  • TEACH life-enriching values
  • EMBED high quality values
  • LIVE by transformative values

When considering the important area of assessments, the words of Benjamin Franklin, an outstanding, highly gifted polymath in the 18th century, are pertinent even today - “Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.”

Among the delights, joys and surprises many educationalists find when they proactively pursue values-based teaching are the happy, feel-good factors generated, the improvements in attitudes, behaviour and performance, better teacher/pupil relationships and parents/carers wanting to engage more deeply in their children’s education.

Developing the whole person

Values education is an exploratory process involving coaching children and young people so that they become increasingly aware of and consider the values shaping and impacting their daily lives now and in the future. Implemented thoughtfully, participants blossom and they are exhilarated by their personal growth, recognising and appreciating palpable and productive changes in their:

  • Self-esteem
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Social skills and competencies
  • Relationships
  • Exploration and management of feelings
  • Understanding of others
  • Performance in all domains of life
  • Aspirations
  • Life chances

Over time, you, parents/carers and others can take pleasure in helping children and young people build up for themselves, a well thought through bedrock of positive values to act as sound reference points for their thinking, feelings, choices and behaviour.

Warm, bright, constant flames

To enable your pupils to grow into bright, constant flames, here are some suggested values you could promote, not necessarily to enable them to be considered ‘cool’ but rather to help them enjoy being warm, friendly human beings, reaching out to and supporting one another as they strive to develop attractive character traits and deliberately radiate qualities such as:

  • Love

  • Helpfulness

  • Trust

  • Sharing

  • Empathy

  • Respect

  • Patience

  • Caring

  • Compassion

  • Kindness

  • Integrity

  • Gratitude

  • Understanding

  • Forgiveness

  • Generosity

  • Unselfishness

Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support us.
When you register, you'll join a grassroots community where you can:
• Enjoy unlimited access to articles
• Get recommendations tailored to your interests
• Attend virtual events with our leading contributors
Register Now
Login

Latest stories

  • How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country
    How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country

    Teaching English in a foreign country is likely to be one of the most demanding experiences you'll ever have. It entails relocating to a new country, relocating to a new home, and beginning a new career, all of which are stressful in and of themselves, but now you're doing it all at once. And you'll have to converse in a strange language you may not understand.

  • Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?
    Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?

    Over the weekend, my family of five went to an Orlando theme park, and I decided we should really enjoy ourselves by purchasing an Unlimited Quick Queue pass. It was so worth the money! We rode every ride in the park at least twice, but one ride required us to ride down a rapidly flowing river, which quenched us with water. It was incredible that my two-year-old was laughing as well. We rode the Infinity Falls ride four times in one day—BEST DAY EVER for FAMILY FUN in the Sun! The entire experience was epic, full of energizing emotions and, most importantly, lots of smiles. What made this ride so cool was that the whole family could experience it together, the motions were on point, and the water was the icing on the cake. It had been a while since I had that type of fun, and I will never forget it.

  • Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2
    Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2

    The Action Pack is back for the start of the brand new school year, just in time for Recycle Week 2021 on 20 - 26 September, to empower pupils to make the world a better and more sustainable place. The free recycling-themed resources are designed for KS1 and KS2 and cover the topics of Art, English, PSHE, Science and Maths and have been created to easily fit into day-to-day lesson planning.

  • Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu
    Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu

    Following the exceptional performance from British breakthrough star Emma Raducanu, who captured her first Grand Slam at the US Open recently, Emmamania is already inspiring pupils aged 4 - 11 to get more involved in tennis - and LTA Youth, the flagship
    programme from The LTA, the governing body of tennis in Britain, has teachers across the country covered.

  • 5 ways to boost your school's eSafety
    5 ways to boost your school's eSafety

    eSafety is a term that constantly comes up in school communities, and with good reason. Students across the world are engaging with technology in ways that have never been seen before. This article addresses 5 beginning tips to help you boost your school’s eSafety. 

  • Tackling inequality in EdTech
    Tackling inequality in EdTech

    We have all been devastated by this pandemic that has swept the world in a matter of weeks. Schools have rapidly had to change the way they operate and be available for key workers' children. The inequalities that have long existed in communities and schools are now being amplified by the virus.

  • EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab
    EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab

    The world is catching up with a truth that we’ve championed at Learning Ladders for the last 5 years - that children’s learning outcomes are greatly improved by teachers, parents and learners working in partnership. 

  • Reducing primary to secondary transition stress
    Reducing primary to secondary transition stress

    As school leaders grapple with the near impossible mission to start bringing more students into schools from 1st June, there are hundreds of thousands of Year 6 pupils thinking anxiously about their move to secondary school.

  • Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?
    Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?

    The K-12 online tutoring market is booming around the world, with recent research estimating it to grow by 12% per year over the next five years, a USD $60bn increase. By breaking down geographic barriers and moving beyond the limits of local teaching expertise, online tutoring platforms are an especially valuable tool for those looking to supplement their studies in the developing world, and students globally are increasingly signing up to online tuition early on in their secondary education schooling. 

  • Employable young people or human robots?
    Employable young people or human robots?

    STEM skills have been a major focus in education for over a decade and more young people are taking science, technology, engineering, and maths subjects at university than ever before, according to statistics published by UCAS. The downside of this is that the UK is now facing a soft skills crisis and the modern world will also require children to develop strong social skills as the workplaces are transformed by technology. 

In order to make our website better for you, we use cookies!

Some firefox users may experience missing content, to fix this, click the shield in the top left and "disable tracking protection"