I have mentioned before how much we enjoy character lessons in our home, so when we had a chance to review a set of Parenting Cards ($38.49) by We Choose Virtues. The parenting cards are a wonderful resource for any family wanting to implement character lessons in the home, and are best used with children ages 3-18. (I reviewed the NIrV of the parenting cards- this version includes both Old and New Testament verses. The NKJV only has Old Testament verses.)
Each set of cards teaches the same virtues:
How We Used The Parenting Cards
We enjoy character lessons, and integrating them into our conversations through out the day- everywhere from reading Bible stories to our own behaviors- Lexie really likes to point out which character traits/virtues we should be working on and when. =)
Implementing these cards into our homeschool was very natural for us. You can teach the virtues in any order you’d like. As you may have read we are using Sonlight for our core curriculum. Each week of our SL lessons includes a character/virtue topic with a matching Bible verse; I thought this would be a perfect way to add in our We Choose Virtues cards. I simply organized the cards in alphabetical order for easy navigation, and choose the card that is most closely related to our topic in the SL. Some weeks we had perfectly matched character traits (obedience, attentiveness, diligence, and kindness to name a few), and some weeks we just had to choose what was most closely related to our topic. I loved doing it this way.
So after I chose which card we would focus on that week, I quickly looked it over. The front of the card tells you which character trait you are focusing on, has a really cute catch phrase for what the trait means, then it also explains what that character trait does not look like (which is a great reminded for little ones!). At the bottom there is a Bible verse that goes with the trait. You can see an example below:
The back of the cards is where any “teacher notes” can be found. Here you will see a “User Challenge” section that give your family a challenge for the character trait, such as doing kind things for others without them knowing (on the Kindness card). It has a reminder of what the trait looks like coming from the parent, so for instance, “kindness is best taught by passion and lead by example.” There is a “Teachable Moments ….” section that gives you things to think about, topics to discuss with the family, and activities to enrich your lessons. At the very bottom on the back of each card, there is a “Kids of Virtueville” section that has the name of a character that goes along with the card to help children remember that particular card. We didn’t focus very much on the characters themselves, but we did read their little story and discuss the question included.
What We Thought
I truly love using these cards in our home! I posted ours up on my weekly board in the kitchen, where I write down what we are studying (so I have everything handy for us talk about throughout the day). This was a perfect spot, because every time bug looked up and saw it from the table, she wanted to discuss it!
I like that each cards says, “I am … ” Kind, Obedient, etc. It is positive reinforcement that they already have these characteristics. Then the “I am NOT …” tells what the trait is not and reminds us what behaviors we should avoid. These cards are meant for the whole family- and I love that! Because can’t we all use some character lessons sometimes? (I certainly can!)
The cards themselves are made of a great quality cardboard material, so they are very sturdy. If you have a laminator, which many of us homeschooler do, they would be easy to laminate, though not necessary. They are 8.5 x 5.5 cards, which means they are nice a BIG, but not too big. The illustrations and words are big and bright enough to help make them stand out.
- Teacher’s Handbook
- Family Character Assessment
- Coloring Pages
- Butterfly Awards
- Sing along song sheets
These were fun and easy to incorporate into our lessons- the teacher’s handbook has tons of helpful information and activities to include. I did the character assessment for Lexie, but really she is a little young to understand the concept- however, she can understand the concept of improving, so that is what we focused on. The coloring pages are of the characters that are mentioned on the cards; we didn’t do these with the lessons, but just for fun when she wanted to do some coloring (she really doesn’t like to color very much ..) We have not used the butterfly awards yet, but this will be a huge hit! And the sing a long sheets are fun!
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