Putting CHARACTER COUNTS! into practice means that teachers develop caring and  supportive relationships with and among students. They craft stand-alone lessons or integrate values and character traits with their ethically rich curriculum by encouraging student engagement with academic tasks. CHARACTER COUNTS! promotes the development of social emotional learning by intentionally teaching the desired character traits and success skills – not leaving this up to chance.


  • How does CHARACTER COUNTS! connect with school improvement?
  • In the video, Gary shares a number of ways that CHARACTER COUNTS! can be seen to be so much more than just Six Pillars of Character or another character education program. If you were asked to do the same, what would you say?
  • What has been the most effective tool, strategy or resource for you to intentionally and explicitly teach CHARACTER COUNTS?
  • In what way have you seen CHARACTER COUNTS! braid or integrate with social and emotional learning? PBIS? School climate?
  • What are some of the challenges that our school faces when trying to integrate character and social and emotional learning into the academic day?
  • How can we overcome these challenges? What support or resources does our school need to be even more effective in our approach of challenging students to be smart and good?