What are ‘Character Strengths’?
The Father of Positive Psychology, Martin Seligman, and his colleagues studied all major religions and philosophical traditions and found that the same six virtues were shared in virtually all cultures across three millennia:
- Wisdom and Knowledge
Each of the 24 character strengths falls under one of these six broad virtue categories, which are universal across cultures and nations. Character Strengths are the positive parts of your personality that impact how you think, feel and behave. Scientists have identified 24 character strengths that you have the capacity to express. Please go to the VIA Institute of Character’s website to find out more details of each character strength:
Why are ‘Character Strengths’ and Positive Education Important?
We believed Positive Education and ‘Character Strengths’ are the best tools to overcome the ‘negative bias’ which is hard wired into our human brain.
How often do you
- Praise a child for their good behaviour?
- Address a child’s mistake?
If your answer is more often praising a child for their good behaviour, we would like to congratulate for your positivity and please keep up with your good work. If your answer is more often the second, it is very common, as most of us are used to addressing a child’s mistake. We believed both actions are important. However, we would like to increase the number and frequency of identifying the Character Strengths of a child because it will help them to accumulate the internal resources they need for living a happy and meaningful life.
Just like Literacy and Numeracy, ‘Character Strengths’ can be taught and acquired through practice.
A child might have all the potential in the world to learn, but they need adults to guide their recognition, identification, and application of their Character Strengths. Although most young children are not yet cognitively mature enough for sophisticated Character Strengths, there are many fundamental Character Strengths such as Love, Zest and Hope, which are associated with Happiness and which start developing at a very young age. As a school, we provide lots of opportunity for our students to develop different Character Strengths.
How Do We Promote ‘Character Strengths’?
Our teaching team will take every opportunity to introduce and apply different Character Strengths in school. We will consistently use the language of Character Strengths in various contexts to enhance the deep understanding of the Character Strengths. We will talk about the Character Strengths of different characters in books, reading materials, videos, or films; teachers and students will spot each other’s Character Strengths, working together to promote a positive atmosphere of seeing the bright side of others. We have also created our own school-based Character Strengths Logos, where students will get a unique sticker, certificate, and badge as an encouragement or commitment to being more aware and making a better use of their Character Strengths.
At Silvermine Bay School:
We will see the good in you and let you know;
We will help you to see the good in yourself so that you yourself will know;
We will teach you to see the good in other people so that you may let them know.
We will be apart of the movement that will make the world a better place every single day by spreading the positive energy of ‘Character Strengths’.