Integrity: this month's life skill | American Family Martial Arts

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Integrity: this month’s life skill

The life skill this month at American Family Martial Arts is teaching children how to act with integrity. This skill  is vital for their development. Without integrity, children break promises, lie, and have no concern for others. Integrity means to adhere to moral and ethical principles, and if taught correctly, children will take these lessons with them as they grow up.
With children ages 3 and 4: they are learning right from
wrong. Teach them about the importance of telling the truth.
Another word you can use for Integrity is Honesty.
Some ways to do this:
Integrity means tell the truth even if you get in trouble
Is it honest to say?
  • You don’t want to go to church so you pretend you are sick?
  • You spilled milk on the floor and instead of walking away, you clean it up?
  • You accidently (or on purpose) wrote on the wall with marker so you quickly hide it so that your parent’s don’t see?
With children ages 5 and 6: they are beginning to understand other
people’s feelings . Teach them how to treat others the way you want to be treated.
Integrity means you are truthful and respectful. An example: if you are nice to other people and you don’t tease others because you know it is wrong, then you have integrity. Having integrity is a great way to show your parents that you care about other people.
Is this an act of integrity?
no bullys at American Family Martial Arts
Taking a stand against bullying
  • You accidentally step on a classmate’s foot, so you quickly apologize?
  • You don’t like your neighbor so you ignore her when she waves to you?
  • You choose not to tease your classmate because you know it’s the wrong thing to do?
  • You broke your glasses so you hide them so that your parent’s don’t find out?
With children ages 7 – 9: they are becoming responsible. Teach
them how to take pride in their responsibilities, particularly with
promises they make. To adhere to moral and ethical principles, especially when it comes to your responsibilities. For example: if you promise to do the dishes and you do a lousy job because you try to rush, then you are not having integrity. You must take pride in all of your responsibilities by giving everything your best shot.   
Some prompt questions:
You promise your parents that you will be on your best behavior for your babysitter. What are good examples and bad examples of having integrity while your parent’s are away?
  • – Good examples: you listen to your baby sitter and you follow instructions without giving her a hard time.
  • – Bad examples: you ignore your baby sitter and misbehave the whole night.

• You are testing for your next belt in a week and your instructor asks you to practice extra at home. What are good examples and bad examples of having integrity with your training?

  • – Good examples: you practice every day and you ask your parents for help.
  • – Bad examples: you don’t practice at all because you don’t think you need extra help.
With children ages 10 to 14: they want to be independent. Teach
them how to apply ethics when making independent choices. Integrity is by far one of the very best character traits one can have.
Discussion prompts for parents: Tell me your definition of the word integrity? If needed explain that integrity means: to adhere to moral and ethical principles, particularly when making independent choices. For example: you have integrity if you refuse to shop lift or steal. You grow up faster if you make all of your choices based on what is morally and ethically right

What would you do?

• Your friend finds a way to shoplift at a local clothing store without getting caught. He asks you if you want to help. Would you:

no bullies at American Family Martial Arts
LSU professor Boz Bowles talks with kids about being a friend, not a bully
  1.  Say yes, but only if there is absolutely no way that you will get caught?
  2.  Tell your friend no because it is morally wrong to steal from others?

• Your classmate shows you a way to cheat on your math exam. Would you:

  1. Say yes, but only if there is absolutely no way that you will get caught?
  2. Tell your class mate no because it is ethically wrong to cheat?
People with integrity make better choices and are more responsible.
Having integrity can take a long time to learn, but the more a child
practices this, the more likely he or she will develop this crucial
value. And having discussions with your child can help them think about this concept and make good choices.
The staff of American Family Martial Arts