Character Traits (and Shabbat)

As a parent I am always looking for ways to build character in my children (and myself).  My family has just started what I hope will be a tradition called Shabbat.  We are not Jewish but I thought I would include the link so you can see what inspired the idea.  It is our goal to not make Shabbat a legalistic event in our household but rather a time that we look forward to.  We have only had a “Shabbat” a few times now but here is what we do:

1.  We enjoy a delicious meal with no rushing.  The goal is not to “eat and run” but rather to sit and enjoy conversation with those we love.

2.  We do a short devotion.  We have decided that those devotions, at least for now, will be focused on one of 49 character traits.

3.  We stay up late playing board games, cards, talking, or whatever we can that helps us to have authentic connection with each other instead of only proximity (Watching TV for example would have us all sitting in the same room but not interacting with each other…so there will typically be no electronic media during our Shabbats..not a rule but a guideline).

The main thing is that we put aside our anxiety about the week, put life on pause, and enjoy each other.

Didn’t mean to go into so much detail regarding the Shabbat.  I just want to share with everyone a link to some great materials regarding Character – http://www.characterfirst.com/

Much of what I used to prepared for the Shabbats I found on their website….most importantly, a great list of 49 Character traits – http://www.characterfirst.com/assets/Files/49Qualities.pdf

I also like the list as it is presented on this site (I believe they are affiliated with the first site):

http://ati.iblp.org/ati/family/curriculum/characterqualities.pdf?show=true

I would love to hear from you on what you use/do to teach and model Character Traits. Blessings, Anthony

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