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Explore weekly topics

Further specific resources for each of the 24-weeks in your character and virtue education plan.  Some of these resources are produced by the author of this site, others are freely linked to internet sources (the author of this site is not responsible for their content nor for their ongoing availability).

Week 1: a general introduction to character and virtue education.

  • This 45 min video A Vision of Character and Virtue  gives an overall introduction to the principles of character education (specific to theological education)
  • Here is a shorter motivational version of the video above, especially for Christian theological educators A Vision for Virtue.
  • This 45 min video The Practice of Character and Virtue gives an overall introduction to the principles of character education (specific to theological education)
  • This study guide on Leaders of Character can be especially important if you have (or plan to have) a leadership role.

Week 2: resources about virtue, character and education

Week 3: more about the biblical and historical roots of character and virtue education

  • Read Psalm 1 and list ways of the wicked in terms of vices and the ways of the righteous in terms of virtues.
  • A sermon from 2 Peter on Adding Virtue to your Faith
  • Bible study guide on Virtues in Psalm 15.
  • This resource, The Roman Road to Virtue  helps you see how book of Romans is structured to address the topic of virtue.
  • If you want to engage a little more with what Christian theologians call the recapitulation theory of the atonement, watch and discuss the following video together: Virtonement
  • Pursue further research around the statement: ‘Christian theology dialogued with the classical/Greek philosophical formulations around character and virtue’. You may want to start with the interface between Aquinas and Aristotle.  Or you might look at the life and work of the Renaissance scholar Petrarch, who stubbornly advocated continuity between Classical culture and the Christian message.

Week 4: explore more about character and virtue in global cultures

  • More on virtue in Islamic contexts.  See the Quran, Surah 16:90 where ‘Allah commands justice and kindness and charity to one’s kindred, and forbids indecency, wickedness and oppression’ or Surah 17 that offers a summary of foundational virtues.
  • More on ‘ubuntu‘ as an African approach to virtue ethics (this is simply a link to a book abstract, but try typing ‘ubuntu + virtue’ into your search engine…
  • More for on contemporary character education developments, see video seminar on Four Accounts of Flourishing as the Aim of Education
  • Three videos to learn more about the vision of Greek Paideia on Moulding the Soul, a Neo-Aristotelian Framework for character and virtue and  what we can learn from the history of 4th century Athens and Virtue.
  • This series of 4 videos explores Christianity, Culture and Character in European history.

Week 5: resources on making a commitment to character and virtue education

  • Seneca wrote the following advice to his pupil Lucilius: ‘Do not run hither and thither and distract yourself by changing your abode; for such restlessness is the sign of a disordered spirit’ (Seneca). More on the Vice of Restlessness that opposes the kind of constancy needed to maintain your commitment to this plan.
  • These three videos on What Killed Character explain what is meant by the death of character education and provides cultural and theological reasons for the historical demise of character education.
  • Reflections from the Christian Scriptures on the importance of visual reminders: Make yourself a monument
  • Here is a free resource to generate a Word Cloud as a visual reminder of key words related to your virtue practice. Here, instead, is an easy and free Meme Generator.

Week 6: resources and examples of virtue tests:

Week 7: more about understanding virtue tests

  • You may wish to broaden your virtue vocabulary with this extensive List of vices and virtues (interestingly, this list is curated by a group that is dedicated to the development of immersive worlds…)
  • Here is another list of 50 vices.
  • If you have never read about the 7 DeadlyVices/Sins, this might be a good time.
  • The digital native community brings with it new emphasis on certain vices, and offers the opportunity to correct with the appropriate virtues. Here are some examples in the video Virtue and Vice for Digital Natives.

Week 8: resources on planning and intentionality

Week 9 and 10: more about habits and habituation

Week 11 and 12 : resources on character friendships

Week 13: resources on virtue literacy

Week 14:  more on humility

Week 15: more on temperance

Week 16: more on courage

Week 17: more on justice

Week 18: more on compassion and mercy

Week 19: more on being diligent

  • The story of the Choice of Hercules has inspired a brief opera by Handel, which you can listen to here.
  • More How to be diligent at work with 10 tips to improve your career, skills and work-life balance.
  • A video on The Virtue of Attentiveness that is closely associated with diligence.

Week 20: more on being grateful

  • Read more about an empirical study on the relationship between compassion and gratitude in Gratitude and Related Character Virtues. In general, the Jubilee Centre offers focused research resources related to the virtue of gratitude.
  • Read more about  how virtues can be clustered into larger groups in the Jubilee Centre’s virtue taxonomy (p.9) that includes four categories: intellectual virtues, moral virtues, civic virtues and performance virtues.  Or consider the VIA classification which suggests six overarching virtue strengths: wisdom/ knowledge, courage, humanity, justice, temperance, and transcendence.
  • Robert Emmons, Ph.D. is perhaps the preeminent scientific expert on the subject of gratitude. Consider this essay and accompanying video on Gratitude is Good.

Week 21: more on acedia and being passionate

Week 22: more on faith, hope and love

Week 23: more on prudence

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