What a joy to come to my son's home and see this on his blackboard for the family! The beauty of this, to me, is that it challenges his children to learn some new concepts and strong morals:
1. What is good? Why would one want to be good? Isn't that what we all want - a good school, a good life, good health? Believing in good, hoping for good, good judgment, and sacrificing for good are all aimed at having a life that is based in good, not bad.
2. The vocabulary is amazing. Who ever talks about Virtue, temperance and prudence? In the past, these were commonly used words. They are important to a healthy and good life.
3. Just by introducing children to these concepts can bring big rewards to all: themselves, the family, and relationships at school. They will help in sports, academics and beyond.
4. These are great conversation starters, beginning with the word Virtue. What does virtue mean? What are some synonyms for virtue? Are there other virtues besides these seven? The 7 Virtues are taught as primary virtues by the Catholic Church. Faith, Hope and Love (Charity) are the 3 Theological virtues, the foundation, and have God for their proper object. The other 4 are called moral or cardinal virtues and call us toward leading moral lives.
5. Simplifying the definition of each virtue makes them feel more attainable, even for us adults. My son, John, told me, "We talk about them at supper. Some people teach their children the 10 Commandments. But those are rules for an entire nation to govern, not rules for kids. How do you teach children about 'Don't commit adultery or Don't covet your neighbors wife'? So we started the 7 virtues. My 5 year old son learned what courage means. He was afraid to go upstairs in the dark, by himself. So I told him 'You can practice your courage!' He'd run up the dark stairs and run down and we'd say 'Hooray, you're being courageous!"