Virtues are a treasure. St. Agnes certainly elevates the pursuit of living a virtuous life with these words of wisdom. She was a young martyr who demonstrated incredible faith and courage. We are also called to be saints who strive to continually grow in grace and virtue.
Virtues are the focus of my second article about establishing a kindness initiative at my school. If you are like me, you hope that your students will discover endless ways to be kind. Having a virtue of the month program provides fresh perspectives on how to choose kindness. For example, if you teach the virtue of courage, you can inspire students to have the courage to be kind when they would otherwise be too shy or afraid.
Each virtue of the month is explored and highlighted in a variety of ways. Lessons include reading and discussing Bible stories and reflecting on Bible verses about each virtue. Students in several grade levels created Google Slides presentations which explained how each virtue inspires kindness. The projects included in the presentations ranged from writing poems about the virtues to filming skits about the virtues. My eighth grade students participated in a generosity project where they researched the impact of being generous and reflected on a daily log of generous deeds. Students enjoyed sharing the monthly virtue assignments with their peers.
Digital Posters are another way to showcase the virtue of the month. It was a joy to collaborate with a parent volunteer to put together a resource for our families. Posters included inspiring quotes and tips for incorporating more of the virtue in family life. Here is an example:
I have put together three collections of virtues that correspond with the kindness themes that I shared in my previous article. Every virtue is connected to a Bible verse specifically chosen to inspire students. Here is the link to the lists:
At this point in the article, you may be asking yourself, What exactly is a virtue anyway? The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines virtue as a habitual and firm disposition to do the good. I tell my students that virtues are holy habits that help us to thrive.
I love that the first three Hail Mary prayers of the Rosary focus on an increase of faith, hope, and love. St. Paul reminds us how important it is to be kind as we live out the greatest of all virtues.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13