Growing Up Well: Supporting Your Five-Year-Old's Character Development

Who do we want our children to become? Parents approach their work from diverse perspectives and cultural traditions. But on this question, there is widespread agreement: we want our kids to become responsible, hardworking and compassionate. In other words, we want them to have good character. Character development is about building good habits, and habits take time to form. Our character is always a work in progress! We may not know what the world will look like when our children become adults, but we know that virtues will help them flourish in any circumstance.

Resilience

Grit involves sticking with something until you succeed. It gives us the strength to try, try, try again. Grit supports a "growth mindset" — a belief that our intelligence and skills can grow with effort. Kids with a growth mindset thrive on challenges, show resilience in the face of obstacles, and view failure as part of the learning process.

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Gratitude

Gratitude involves both feeling and expressing our thankfulness; it means we show our appreciation for others. According to the Harvard Healthbeat, "Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships."

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Build Good Character Skills with Arthur

Whether facing down a bully, worrying about a new teacher or being the very last person on earth to lose his baby teeth, Arthur and his friends manage to solve their crises with imagination, kindness and a lot of humor.

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Explore our Age-by-Age Guide: