A couple weeks ago, I found out that James was to be awarded a gold medal for honesty at his school.
At the beginning of the year, our school adopted a program that encourages positive character traits in children. We've always had a program of that sort but it was taught by the counselors. Each month, the kids would learn about honesty, doing your best, respect for others, responsibility, tolerance, etc.
This year, our school PTA came up with the funds to hire an outside group to help with these character building exercises. I was wary. On the surface, the group seemed vaguely religious. Religion has it's place, but it's not in the public school. I waited it out and watched.
I was pleased with the outcome of my wait. The group, Knights of the Guild, has a main tenant: Our approach to teaching character education creatively integrates the instruction of noble character traits with the historic theme of gallant knight and chivalry. The relevance of this parallel stems from the term, "Knight", which means "servant". Highlighting historic heroism of both male and female knights, our programs encourage students to seek knightly character and personal excellence, through which they can better serve their communities through knowledge, wisdom and compassion.
The fun thing about this group, is that when they introduce the program at the beginning of the year, they go all "renaissance festival" on the school. They send a whole group of knights (men and women), ladies dressed up as fair maidens, and huge drafts horses. Lots of jousting and thundering around on horseback. Who wouldn't want to be a knight after such a spectacle?
Each month, a student from each class is awarded a medal for that month's theme. One knight comes out for the assembly and gives a short speech regarding that month's theme. He then 'knights' the kids that have won and places the medal around their necks. The teachers also present the kids with a scroll that explains why they best exemplify that trait.
Congratulations James. A knight of honesty. Not a bad thing to be.