Before we made our recent move, I found out that I was going to have the opportunity to review the secular version of a program called We Choose Virtues. Reviewing anything during a move can prove stressful to say the least, but this program was just what we needed to help us start to settle in while keeping everyone’s character in check.
Help me understand you law.
That is part of the memory verse for the virtue of obedience from Psalm 119:34 and though we are a secular family, it was the key to the start of our virtue studies with We Choose Virtues.
You see, before we moved I read through the teacher’s manual and then I sat down with the kids and used the character assessment charts for the program to help decided where the kids strengths and weaknesses were in the 12 virtues addressed in the program. It was insightful, but I wasn’t really sure where to start.
Then I had the opportunity to listen to a WONDERFUL conference call with Heather, the creator of We Choose Virtues. It is was then that I learned that we should start with three virtues, the three main rules, to be obedient, kind and helpful.
Heather suggested that if your home is in a bit of chaos (I will fully admit we have been at full on chaos for a while now) that you should work on one virtue at a time as a family. If your kids already doing well with obedience and the remainder of the three rules, let them work on individual virtues that they are personally struggling with.
We need to reign in the chaos, so I gathered the kids around the table with some blank paper, the memory verse for obedience on hand and the virtue clue card for obedience.
We discussed what it means to be obedient, practiced reciting the phrase on the clue card and used the phrase for copywork. Then we discussed the memory verse and applied it to our situation. We discussed how it is my job to help them understand the laws in our home so that they may be obedient.
It was then that we wrote out a rough draft of our house rules with I will Obey, I will be Kind and I will be Helpful at the top. It really helped my children to be a part of the process of deciding some of our rules and to have them out on paper and clear for the whole family to understand.
Three Weeks Later
We are still working on obedience, but I have seen some great progress. My 8 year old daughter is having the hardest time with this virtue. She is willfully stubborn, but a quick recitation from me of the obedience phrase from the virtue clue card and she begins to reign in her defiance.
We have yet to use to delightful Kids of VirtueVille Coloring Book provide as part of the We Choose Virtues program. I am saving the coloring pages for when the kids have succeeded at demonstrating a virtue. Once they finish our first virtue, Obedience, I plan to print out the coloring page for them so that they can color it and put it up on the fridge or their wall to commemorate their accomplishment.
In all, I LOVE the We Choose Virtues Program and I am so happy that I had the opportunity to revisit the program and share it with my readers again.
Purchasing We Choose Virtues for your Home
“From Caterpillar . . . To Butterfly - We Choose Virtues brings memorable catchphrases, endearing characters, and just plain fun to inspire character that last.”
Available for Purchase at: We Choose Virtues Shop
Cost: Varies. Purchasers can choose to purchase a full kit, $69.99* for the family kit or $98.99* for the homeschool kit, or to buy individual components.
Suggested Ages: 3 years through 5th grade
Homeschool Kit Components:
Family Character Assessment
Kids Virtue Poster
Kids of VirtueVille Mini Posters
Three Rules Poster
100 Days of Virtue Poster and Butterfly Stickers
25 Virtue User Reviews
Official Butterfly Award
An Awesome Discount! : You can get 20% off the purchase of a homeschool kit during the months of March and April of 2013 with code HOME20 or 15% off your entire We Choose virtues purchase with code VIRTUE15 (coupon codes are entered on the final page of checkout before you complete your purchase)
Encouraging & Helpful Tips from Heather
As I said, I had the opportunity to listen to a wonderful conference call in which Heather shared her vision and pointers for We Choose virtues. I took pages of notes, lost my notes (my own virtue issue,) listened to the call again and now I want to share some key points with you.
If you want to use the program with younger or older students it is possible. For children under three, just focus on the three rules. For older children, have them teach the virtues to your younger children. Heather also has a program for older children in the works. I suggest subscribing to the We Choose Virtues blog to keep up with any future announcements.
Although Heather herself only used the flash cards for years to teach virtues, she feels the parenting cards are the best choice for families for a must have item.
When teaching your children the virtues encourage them as they voluntarily use their virtues and discipline when they willfully disobey. “Be firm but kind.” Over time they will have established character and it will become who they are.
“From the moment our children are born into our homes, we are their teacher.” Heather believes the teacher’s manual is beneficial to families, not just homeschoolers or teachers, as we are our children’s first teachers.
The flashcards are a great tool even if your child is not reading yet because they feature rhyming text and word association through initial consonant sounds.
When following the three rules, use them in order; obedience, kindness then helpfulness. Just because a child is already being helpful does not mean that do not have to be obedient. Obedience always comes first.
Do you feel like your family has a hold on the three rules, the virtues of obedience, being kind and being helpful? Have you ever used a program to help with character training in your home?For more reviews of We Choose Virtues, including King James Version, check out the reviews from my fellow team mates over at Mosaic Reviews.
*Prices are current as of 3/28/13 and are subject to change.