When I first considered doing reviews, one of the first things I wanted to review was a character training curriculum called We Choose Virtues. I was thrilled when it was announced that we would be reviewing just that with Mosaic Reviews. I received a set of the Virtue Flashcards and a few digital files for free for this review. This review is a compilation of my own honest opinions (which just makes me laugh that I need to state that, and annoyed that there are dishonest people out there who make this necessary). Oh, and I wasn’t paid. Alrighty, the FTC should be happy now so let’s move on to my review…
First, look at this cool collage I made of my girls using the curriculum:
Ok, now I’ll tell you about it.
The first thing we did was use the free character assessment sheet that comes with just about every product. It is a download that you print out for each member of the family. This can be an eye-opening experience, to see what your kids think of themselves. My kiddos were pretty accurate in their assessment of themselves once I explained that there were no wrong answers and this was just to help them see how they are doing with their character.
We then discussed what character and virtue meant.
What I found most valuable with this task was the reminder that my kids already know they have flaws, I don’t have to point those out to them. What I need to do is help them aim for positive change. Focus on the positive, not the negative. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you have to deal with the negative head on. I simply mean that a lot of the negative things we deal with in parenting (and life) can be helped by taking positive, preventative action.
This is what I appreciate about character training. What I appreciate specifically about We Choose Virtues is that it is bright, colorful, and fun.
The virtue cards are awesomely illustrated with kids that my kids love. They love the names particularly. Did you know how fun Oboe Joe and Feather Heather can be to say? Apparently, it is much fun.
The cards have a positive statement on the front that reads “I am <insert virtue here>” with an illustration of one of the aforementioned kids. The back side has a catchy catch phrase to use when you need a practical, hands-on reminder in life. You know like when your kid starts to whine because they are bored and don’t like waiting? Yep, you prompt them with ” I wait, and wait, and wait with a smile!” With a smile on your face, of course.
There are also antonyms listed on the cards. For example, “I am NOT…pushy, or controlling, and I don’t get frustrated or bored when others are slow!” I do like giving kids the words to acknowledge weak character, they need to know that patience isn’t just waiting with a smile, it means we don’t push the person we are waiting on. The antonyms paint a full picture for kids to learn to recognize what good character looks like…and what it doesn’t.
Probably my favorite part is the Bible verses on my cards. I asked for the King James Version cards because that is what fits with our family. There are also options for NIV and secular cards which have no scripture verses. The secular cards are perfect for teachers wanting to use We Choose Virtues in the classroom.
The final product that I will mention is the coloring book. I received the digital (downloadable) version. My kids loved coloring the pictures! I loved that I only had to buy (well, you know what I mean) one and then print off as many copies as I needed. I did not like that I had to use my printer, but that’s just because my printer is dying and not exactly working the greatest.
Overall, we love the product. It is a bit on the pricey side, but you do get what you pay for and you are supporting a family business in the process. That is priceless.
I know I said it was a little pricey, but guess what? I have a discount code for you all! Two, actually.
HOME20 is good for 20% off the homeschool kit through the end of April.
VIRTUE15 is good for 15% off ANY product with no expiration date.
I will be sharing more about how we are using the curriculum and even some supplemental ways to use it in the coming weeks. So be sure to sign up to get my blog posts in your email (on the right, at the top).
Now tell me, what do you use for character training in your home?