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Center for Advencement of Ethics and CharacterMore Character Education from BU CAEC

Exciting the Moral Imagination Through Literature or Drama

Young people can often be introduced imaginatively or vicariously to the importance of good character. The stories they hear and the art they explore have the power to transform them. Tapping the moral imagination also provides a setting, safely, detached from students' own lives, where they can comfortably ask, "What is the right thing to do?"

The following questions may be used as prompts for reader-response exercises, journal writing, or in-class discussion:

  • Which character in the book [or novel, play, biography, or other work] you are reading would you most like to be like? Did this character face a difficult challenge? How did he or she overcome it?
  • Which of his or her character traits would you most like to have in a friend? Why?
  • What have you learned most from your encounter with this character?
  • Which character would you least like to be like? Why? What have you learned from this character?
  • Identify and briefly describe your favorite or least favorite character in the book, and write either an original poem that captures the personality and qualities of this character, or a journal entry from this character's point of view that chronicles his or her thoughts and reflections about a significant event or experience in the book.
  • Write a letter to a friend that describes a memorable scene from the story. Be sure to explain why it was so memorable to you.
  • Discuss something meaningful you have learned from this particular book. Be as specific as you can.


More Character Education from BU CAEC

Boston University's Center for the Advancement of Ethics and Character offers lessons and methodologies to help teach virtue to students.


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Highlights

Teaching Racism & Discrimination in America
The issues of racism, prejudice, and discrimination have plagued the United States since it was founded, and racially motivated killings still occur with frequency today. Help your students understand the historical contexts of racism—with references on slavery, immigration, and the civil rights movement—to frame your conversation on modern instances of prejudice.

Poptropica Teaching Guides
Poptropica is one of the Internet's most popular sites for kids—and now it's available as an app for the iPad! It's not just a place to play games; each of the islands featured on the site provides a learning opportunity. Check out our teaching guides to four of Poptropica's islands: 24 Carrot Island, Time Tangled Island, Mystery Train Island, and Mythology Island.

Teaching with Comics: Galactic Hot Dogs
Reach reluctant readers and English-language learners with comics! Our original teaching guides to the Galactic Hot Dogs comic series (chapters 1-4 and 5-8), as found on Funbrain.com (and now in print!), will take students on a cosmic adventure while engaging their creative minds. Plus, find even more activities for teaching with comics, featuring many other classic stories.

July Calendar of Events
July is full events that you can incorporate into your standard curriculum. Our Educators' Calendar outlines activities for each event, including: Canada Day (7/1), Independence Day (7/4/1776), World Population Day (7/11), Bastille Day in France (7/14), National Ice Cream Day (7/19), First Moon Landing (7/20/1969), World War I Began (7/28/1914), Author J.K. Rowling's Birthday (7/31/1965). Plus, celebrate Read an Almanac Month and Recreation and Parks Month all July long!

Videos
Interested in using different types of media in your classroom? We have a growing collection of videos, with related activities, for holidays and events, including: Independence Day, slavery & the Civil War, American History, U.S. Presidents, handwashing awareness, the Common Core, women's history, Memorial Day, and the environment. Enjoy!