I recently received a pretty neat program to test out called We Choose Virtues, a character-building program for young kids that focuses on traits like forgiveness, diligence and honesty.
To facilitate my review I received the following items from their expansive catalog:
*Family Character Assessment (a guide that helps you identify what traits to work on) $0
*Virtue Flashcards (one card per virtue) $14.99
*One parenting card (the complete package includes one parenting card per virtue) $34.99
*Teacher’s Handbook (PDF) $5.00
*Butterfly Award (PDF)
*Coloring Book (PDF) $3.00
This is not an inexpensive program, the entire program includes much more than you see here and will set you back about $100. The good news is that you can order a la carte so you don’t need to spend that much.
This Big Happy & Mosaic Review readers can use the following codes at the We Choose Virtues store for a discount!
home20 – 20% off the homeschool kit through end of April, 2013
virtue15 – 15% off your total order
We used this program a little differently than is laid out in the teacher guide as much children are a little older than the target audience. Each week my husband and I picked a virtue that we felt was most needed that week. I would read the Virtue Flash Card to my younger children (ages almost 10, 8 and 6) and we’d talk about what the virtue means. I read the kids a story about the virtue; there are short stories available on the parent cards but as I didn’t receive a parent card for each virtue I made up the stories as I went. The kids color the corresponding coloring page (if they want) as we talk about the virtue and I read to them.
During the week the Virtue Flash Card remains on the fridge where it is easily visible. As the week progresses I find teachable moments to remind the children of the virtue. At the end of each week my husband and I talk to the kids and together we determine which child is most improved in that virtue and as a reward they get to keep the card. Here’s an example: My 9 year old daughter was involved in an incident that she knew she would be punished for, yet she told us the truth when we asked her about it. We decided that our daughter should get the honesty card to keep.
We Choose Virtues is available in three forms: King James, NIV and secular, I received the secular form to try out. A note to secular families: the parent cards do have Bible verses on them but the other materials I used do not.
While the current materials are geared toward younger children there are good things in the works over at We Choose Virtues. We were treated to a conference call with the developer and she shared news of upcoming programs just for older children and teens! I can’t wait to try that program out!
What I Like:
The cards are full color and fun for the kids.
The PDF materials are affordable and high quality.
What I Love:
This program isn’t complicated and is extremely customizable to your needs. The way we do it only takes a few minutes a day but if you want it to be more formal you can dedicate more time.
What I’m not crazy about:
The program is pretty expensive, I really wanted to purchase a set of parent cards but $35 is a lot for me to spend on one thing that I’ll use for only a few weeks. The good news is that the items are of exceptional quality.
The secular version isn’t 100% secular
We are having a lot of fun with this program and I find the non-secular content easy enough to skip over. If you like the materials but are having budgetary concerns I think one could do the entire program using just the Virtue Flash cards and a little creativity.