Sharing ideas on Education, Leadership and Life

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Having a Set of Values


Today I saw a tweet with a link to a post by Frank Sonnenberg, who is a thought leader I follow on Twitter
His post " Times May Change, But Your Core Values Don’t" gives a very detailed list of the core values we need to have at all times. As I looked at the post and tried to cut and paste a few to highlight they are all worthwhile, so I encourage you to read the post.

I think too often we get caught up in the "curriculum" which is important or at times teaching to the test and we tend to focus on the academic end of things. However, today more and more research shows that we need to incorporate the social and emotional well being besides just focusing on the academics. We can't truly teach innovation, creativity, collaboration, digital citizenship without addressing and dealing with values.

My teaching experience has always been in Jewish Day Schools, where for obvious reasons values play a large role. I often told my students people on the street won't ask you what novel you are reading or what were the causes of the Civil War, but they will see and judge you by the way you act.

There are countless stories I could tell to show this on both from a positive standpoint and, unfortunately from a negative one as well.

As we plan for the new school year and prepare exciting and challenging academic lessons let us not lose sight of our values and the values we want and must instill in our students.

OK,  I gave in here is Frank's partial list:

See the good in everything.
Make him or her feel special.
Never stop learning.
Keep your promises.
Do right by others.
Be a loyal friend.
Appreciate what you have.
Be humble.
Challenge yourself.
Practice what you preach.
Reach for the stars.
Be dependable and reliable.
Give of yourself.
Be courageous.
Work hard, work smart
Tell the truth.
Accept responsibility
Show compassion.
Do the right thing.
Be strong.
Meet others halfway.
Play nice.
Have faith
Forgive and forget.
Be fair.
Lend a hand.
Keep an open mind.
Give thanks.
Don’t quit.
Be kind.
Bring out the best in others.
Show respect.
Show you care.
Give it one more try.
Believe in yourself
Be yourself.
Do your best.
Make a difference.
Listen to your conscience.


  1. Pretty powerful list of values that would be easy to easy to investigate & inspire in the every day...

    Just a wonder- what if we worked @ discovering & highlighting these values in our learning communities without needing to actually teach them?

    I think many of our students value & model many of these characteristics & bringing them to the fore front actually models for others while spotlighting those who are making the effort.

    A good reminder about what is truly important:)

  2. Thanks
    I would say that at times we take certain things for granted and often students need to be taught how to say thank you and we need to model and show caring etc..
    Thanks for your comment