LLCA adds character education to curriculum for 2013-2014

Published 2:58 pm Wednesday, August 28, 2013

At Lake Lure Classical Academy (LLCA), education is not just about intellect; it is also about character enrichment. New to the 2013-2014 LLCA curriculum is the addition of a Character Education Program (CEP) component. Character education cultivates opportunities for students to demonstrate character strengths in the areas of curiosity, social intelligence, self-control, gratitude, service, optimism, zest, integrity and grit.

The school’s motto to students is to “Inquire. Inspire. Serve.”

End of year survey responses from LLCA parents and families indicated a strong interest in the addition of character development to the school’s curriculum. The LLCA Board’s Curriculum Committee learned about the collaborative character education work achieved by the non-profit, Character Lab, psychology professor Martin Seligman, Dr. Angela Duckworth and KIPP Public Charter Schools.

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The LLCA CEP is designed around nine of these character strengths, allowing a school-wide focus on one each month.

LLCA Director Jessica Boland gives examples for how character education is incorporated into current studies.

Kindergarten students studying the Wright Brothers could explore the brothers’ grit in their determination to fly. The brothers started by repairing bicycles, and after many failed test flights and visits to the drawing board, they “dug deep and demonstrated grit by trying again until they finally got it right and became pioneers in the study of flight.”

Boland adds that sixth graders could explore curiosity as they study historical figures like Scientist Marie Curie whose curiosity led her to become the first woman to win a Nobel Prize.

The LLCA program goes even further according to board member and curriculum committee chair Melinda Morse.

“Our program also helps students deal with social intelligence and self knowing issues, like failure,” said Morse. “Is failure a setback, a motivation or a means for collapse?”