A new character education program with a different emphasis each month has begun at Cabool Elementary School, taught by Bradley Coleman, elementary school counselor.
Coleman said the program is similar to one used at a Nixa elementary school where he did his internship. Over the course of the school year, it will focus on self-control (this month’s character), respect, compassion, responsibility, honesty, integrity, attitude and confidence.
“Basically, every month will have a specific character,” Coleman said, and he will teach age-appropriate lessons in each elementary classroom, emphasizing that month’s character.
For example, in a first grade classroom recently, Coleman talked about self-control and used different ways to get his message across. A short video of Cookie Monster showed how the character from Sesame Street loses control when it comes to eating cookies.
Another exercise in self-control involved a video where a teacher would leave a student in a room with a marshmallow, which the student could eat it if he/she wished, or wait and be rewarded with a second marshmallow when the teacher returned. Each child’s struggle with whether to wait or to go ahead and eat the marshmallow reflected that child’s level of self-control.
Bubbles, and the almost-irresistible urge to pop them, were used as another example. Coleman blew some soap bubbles, asking the class to sit still and let the bubbles float by or land on them. Sometimes the temptation to pop the bubbles was too much to take, illustrating that self-control can be hard.
The Bulldog Bucks part of the program is a way to reward students who are following the message of those in-class lessons and applying them in real-life situations, Coleman said. “The Bulldog Bucks are really there to reinforce it.”
Any school employee – teachers, administrators, support staff -- can award a student a Bulldog Buck. The student’s name and the reason the Bulldog Buck was awarded are written on the Buck, which is deposited in a drawing box. A drawing will be held each month to determine winners of prizes through the program. Those rewards are still being decided, Coleman said.
Businesses and organizations in the community are welcome to participate in the Bulldog Bucks program. “If businesses want to get involved, we’d appreciate it,” said Coleman. Interested persons may call the school at 962-3153.
News Article By: The Cabool Enterprise