How To Incorporate Values in Students [39 Tips]

How To Incorporate Values in Students [39 Tips]

The importance of values education is reflected in the famous quote from former American President Theodore Roosevelt: “To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.

The significant sources of morals and values in a child’s life are home, books, peers, mass media, etc. Above all, schools and teachers play a vital role in the life of a student. Each subject has moral or ethical aspects. It is not necessary to have a moral education course at the school level.

But it is important to have this subject in teachers’ education as compulsory. Teachers are the makers of the future generation, and they need guidelines to incorporate values in students, considering that everyday classroom life is saturated with moral meaning.

To develop and support students effectively, pre-service teachers must be openly trained in the areas of moral development and values education (Revell & Arthur, 2007).

According to Howard, an approach may be termed comprehensive when it:

  • Has comprehensive content,
  • Is comprehensive in methodology,
  • Takes place throughout the school, and
  • Involves the entire community.

Certain other conditions enable the expression of a value, like knowledge, ability, opportunity, and priority. If one of these conditions is lacking, a value may not be expressed in behavior. This chapter intends to discuss all these factors of incorporating values thoroughly.

Models for Transmitting Values

Researchers established that there are two models for incorporating values:

Inculcation Models

It emphasizes that values are transmitted by deliberate promotion. It is a type of Socratic dialogue where people are gradually brought to their own realization of what is good behavior for themselves and their community. (Wikipedia)

Like the discipline, values begin with Socratic questions

  • How should one live?
  • What values guide us?
  • What standards do we use?
  • What principles are at stake?
  • And how do we choose between them?

A value approach to a problem will inquire about ends (goals) and means (the instruments we use to achieve these goals) and the relationship between the two.

Socialization Models

It emphasizes that values are transmitted in a more subtle way, even unconsciously, whether we like it or not. It comes from societal or religious rules or cultural values. Social ceremonies, Cultural habits, and religious practices are, for instance, inherited by the generation of the present from the ancient’s.

Ways for Transmitting Values

There are three principal ways in which schools transmit values (Charlene Tan, Kimchong Chong, 2007, p. 30).

Through the Curriculum (both formal and informal)

In brief, “Curriculum” is an educational plan of a program of learning that includes philosophy, content, approach, and assessment.

The informal curriculum consists of activities such as sports, cultural events, etc., carried out under school supervision. These should be treated as individual skills and can be considered essential for skills like leadership, cooperation, responsibility, and confidence. These skills are nurtured by extracurricular activities.

Explicit Values Education is associated with these curricula. The informal curriculum is popularly known as co-curriculum and is designed to make learners proficient in practical skills for maintaining good health with an enlightened mind.

Through the so-called Hidden Curriculum

Longstreet and Shane (1993) offer a commonly accepted definition for this term.

The “hidden curriculum” refers to the kinds of learning children derive from the very nature and organizational design of the public school, as well as from the behaviors and attitudes of teachers and administrators…

It is a branch of curriculum studies that investigates how society transmits culture from generation to generation and has been tagged with the term “hidden curriculum,” though much of what is studied is hiding in plain sight.

This type of curriculum helps improve Implicit Value Education.

According to Émile Durkheim, more is taught and learned in schools than is specified in the established curriculum of textbooks and teachers’ manuals.

In his book “Moral Education,” Durkheim opines: “In fact, there is a whole system of rules in the school that predetermines the child’s conduct. He must come to class regularly; he must arrive at a specified time and with an appropriate bearing and attitude.

He must not disrupt things in the class. He must have learned his lessons, done his homework, and done so reasonably well, etc. There are, therefore, a host of obligations that the child is required to shoulder.

Together, they constitute the discipline of the school. It is through the practice of school discipline that we can inculcate the spirit of discipline in the child” (Durkheim, Émile (1961 (1925)). “Moral Education.” New York, the Free Press, p. 148 mentioned in Wikipedia).

Through Personal Interaction between Teachers and Pupils

Personal interactions between teachers, parents, communities, and pupils also help foster values in students.

Strategies for Incorporating Values

Pupils need assistance in developing values in them. Some strategies are mentioned here in this regard. For the convenience of readers, these are divided into three categories:

  1. Classroom Strategies,
  2. School Strategies, and
  3. instilling some basic values.

Classroom Strategies

Guidelines to be applied in the classroom are discussed here :

Promoting Critical and Creative Thinking

Critical thinking is reasonable, reflective thinking that serves as a guide to beliefs and actions. Creativity empowers the human mind to innovate. Islam encourages value-laden creativity.

For example, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “Whosoever introduces a good practice in Islam, there is for him its reward and the reward of those who act upon it after him without anything being diminished from their rewards. And whosoever introduces an evil practice in Islam will shoulder its sin and the sins of those who will act upon it, without diminishing their burden in any way.” (Muslim)

However, it is indispensable for everybody of any faith to have a high level of thinking skills, and it can be learned and taught. Courses should be designed to stimulate learners to raise a range of inquiries or questions. In this regard, some strategies may be implemented.


Kids will increase their thinking skills if riddles and puzzles are presented properly to them. They also enjoy it. But one should be careful about selecting the puzzles. Chosen puzzles should cultivate some useful general skills. It needs to be explicitly discussed what skills are being taught and why.

Making Pupils Think and Teaching Them How to Learn

Knowledge is accumulating at such a rate that it is impossible to learn everything. Moreover, as knowledge is transitory, it is difficult to predict what will be useful for the future or what will be selected to learn.

Therefore, we must teach children how to think and learn, i.e., equip them with the basic attitudes, beliefs, skills, and resources necessary to tackle fresh problems and acquire new information (Neville Jones & Eileen Baglin Jones, 1992).

Students should be assigned tasks that require thinking or speculation (Tafakkur) rather than simple factoid presentation. Homework should be selected to teach them some skills, not just copying.

Our assessment system relies on rote and regurgitation, but this tendency needs to be gradually eliminated. Rote learning cannot be entirely avoided, but it needs to be selective.

For example, students should memorize multiplication tables by rote learning, but they should also learn and think about how to apply them; rote learning should not be the sole approach in this regard.

For example, students should be evaluated for their understanding when they go through a text. However, in Bangladesh, teachers often provide answer sheets and solutions for students to memorize. This practice amounts to ‘spoon-feeding’ the learners.

Another setback can be mentioned as an example. Our textbooks often provide a definition on one page and then an exercise on a later page that simply calls for regurgitating the definition, word for word. Teachers should not assign such exercises.

Instead, they should create exercises that require applying the idea rather than memorizing empty words. If it is not possible to create such exercises, then the idea may not be very important, and no exercises need to be assigned on that topic.

Thinking is obligatory for everyone. Allah has repeatedly commanded in the Quran to use Aql or intelligence and be sensible, reasonable, and rational.

The universe is a book for the wise to ponder over Heaven’s messages, and “those who are endowed with insight may take them to heart” (Sad: 29). This Quranic verse signifies that one has to deeply and fully understand the meanings behind the words they recite, read, or memorize.

Thinking is important for understanding the Quran. Understanding its meaning helps in performing prayers, supplication, remembrance of Allah, etc., and understanding its implications in all aspects of life.

Students should engage in reflexive thinking in class, throughout the day, and every day. They should make it a habit to mull over each new idea and connect it with previous knowledge.

Thinking about these connections increases the usefulness of each memory, as it can be recalled in multiple ways. Students should be responsible for their own learning. They should be helped to be aware of the ways in which they learn and be able to monitor their own learning.

Allah teaches us: “Say: ‘I do admonish you on one point: that you do stand up before Allah—(it may be) in pairs or (it may be) singly—and reflect (within yourselves)'” (Saba: 46).

Both teachers and students must practice thinking about what they are going to say.

Great Saints like Imam Ash-Shafi’ee (rahimatullaah) said: “When one desires to talk, then it is upon him to think before he speaks. If there is beneficial good in what he will say, then he should speak. And if he has doubt about that, then he must not speak until he clears that doubt (by making his speech good).

So teachers must have a clear concept of their respective subjects before entering the classroom, and students should be taught where to find the information they need or how to research a topic and whom to ask for information.

Multiple Ways in Problem Solving

Students should check their work or problem-solving in multiple ways. They should be assigned the same exercise more than once, with instructions to find answers using different methods.


Efforts should be made to inspire students to draw diagrams in subjects like electronics, relativity, environment, geometry, etc. The Prophet (peace be upon him) once drew a straight line with lines to the left and right. The straight line represented the straight path (Siratul Mustakim), while the others represented destruction.


Students should practice re-deriving things, even if it’s something they remember. This serves as a cross-check on their memory and enhances their thinking skills. It also improves their understanding and ability to recall related facts.

For example, any important formula can be derived in multiple different ways.

Allah commands us to reflect upon the beginning of everything and to observe the roots, so one may not jump to questionable conclusions without critical insight (Badi, Tajdin, 2010). “Say to them (O Muhammad): I exhort you on one thing only—that you stand up for Allah’s sake in pairs and singly and reflect.” (Saba: 46) Al-Quran also says: “Behold, there is indeed a lesson for all who have eyes to see” (Al-Imran: 13).

Selecting What to Memorize

There is an urge from educators and psychologists that we often ignore. It is an even more obvious and important suggestion: Don’t force students to learn things that can’t be true.

For example, “How does Hattima Tim Tim look like?” Students are regularly forced to learn such absurd lessons. The behaviorist and social philosopher B. F. Skinner can be mentioned here: “We shouldn’t teach great books; we should teach a love of reading.”

The more the teacher emphasizes memorizing meaningless or absurd topics, the more she loses credibility and trust, and the more firmly the students learn that critical thinking is not acceptable.

In several places, al-Quran suggests remembering, receiving admonition, and bearing in mind nothing but the truth. “Can, then, he who knows that whatever has been bestowed from on high upon thee by thy Sustainer is the truth be deemed equal to one who is blind? Only they who are endowed with insight keep this in mind” (Al-Raad: 19). “And He makes clear His messages unto mankind, so that they might bear them in mind” (the Quran, 2: 221).

Finding Errors and Nonsense Examples

Set up a program that rewards students for finding errors in the books. The reward should depend on the importance of the error. One point may be allotted for spelling errors, and many points for fundamental misconceptions.

They can also find discrepancies in their textbooks. For example, according to the social science textbook of class 1, the environment can be divided into two types. But in the textbook of class 2, environments are divided into 3 types.

Assign students to find examples of nonsense in real life. There are plenty of blatant examples, including advertisements for “energy drinks,” “cold or hot drinks,” and so forth. Belief in stones, magnetic therapy bracelets, etc.

Promoting Praise/Positive

This approach will help transfer virtue into a habit using “positive reinforcement.” Students can be praised for being good.

Teachers may give them chits/medals that can be exchanged for privileges or prizes. But it has to be implemented carefully, as it may happen that the real significance of the students’ actions is lost, as the reward or award becomes the main focus.

Use of Moral Dilemmas

A moral dilemma is a situation in which an individual or society faces a conflicting situation in which there are few alternatives to choose from to make a moral decision. Usually, a moral dilemma consists of one issue and one or several characters who have to face the issue and make a decision. The decision is based on rational reasoning (jadal) (Vishalache Balakrishnan, CPVEA, p. 72).

It also promotes critical thinking skills. Teachers should not avoid controversial issues; instead, they should provide guidance for adopting a positive and optimistic approach. Pupils have to provide evidence to support their arguments or to empathize with varying points of view. They can also evaluate alternative solutions and generate recommendations.

Discussions and classroom debates about issues reflecting contrasting values will emphasize the use of critical thinking skills. Teachers have to encourage all students to participate and share their views. Al-Quran emphasizes reasoning: “Verily, the vilest of all creatures in the sight of God are those deaf, those dumb ones who do not use their reason” (Al-Anfal: 22).

Moral dilemmas can be categorized into 2 types:

Hypothetical Moral Dilemma

This kind of situation leads students to make decisions based on the situation given. Teachers can increase the moral reasoning level of the students by applying hypothetical moral dilemmas.

Real-life Moral Dilemma

Ask the students questions that will stimulate dialogue about values.

Younger students tend to fight in schools. “What did you think about that fight?” may be more effective than saying, “He shouldn’t have started that fight!” There are some social and environmental issues that may be controversial.

Here students’ personal life problems can also be considered. Students inform their personal problems or experiences to the teachers in confidence. Teachers select and bring familiar situations to students in a pictorial form.

Then, the teacher asks a series of inductive questions (from concrete to analytical) regarding the discussion of the situation. In that discussion, the learners should experience five steps of the problem-posing methodology (Nixon-Ponder, 1995):

  1. Describe the content of the discussion
  2. Define the problem
  3. Personalize the problem
  4. Discuss the problem
  5. Discuss the alternatives to the problem

Then, the three steps of decision-making strategies are used (Mirman and Tishrtian, 1988):

  1. Find creative options for the situations or problems
  2. List reasons for and against the most promising options
  3. Make a careful choice from the list of reasons

There are two categories of strategies for exploring values in the classroom:

Value Clarification

Value clarification is a technique for encouraging students to relate their thoughts and feelings and thus enrich their awareness of their own values. This activity illustrates one values clarification strategy, a values grid.

A values grid helps students clarify the degree of commitment they feel to different issues.

Purpose of Value Clarification:

  • Help students become aware of and identify their own values and those of others.
  • Encourage students to communicate openly and honestly with others about their values.
  • Enable students to use both rational thinking and emotional awareness to examine their personal feelings, values, and behavioral patterns.


Different strategies may be applied here, such as role-playing games, simulations, contrived or real value-laden situations, in-depth self-analysis exercises, out-of-class activities, small group discussions, clarifying response strategies, values grids, ranking, and group dynamics.

Value Analysis

Value clarification guides reflection on personal moral dilemmas, whereas value analysis is commonly used with social issues that involve many people and viewpoints.

Purpose of Value Analysis:

  • Use logical thinking and scientific procedures to investigate social issues inherent to their immediate surroundings.
  • Apply rational and analytical processes to interrelate and conceptualize their values.


Strategies that may be used here include structured, rational discussions that demand the application of reasons as well as evidence, testing principles, analyzing analogous cases, debates, research, individual or group study, library, and fieldwork with rational class discussions.

As a guide, teachers have to be aware of the students’ own feelings and opinions about any issue. They have to be honest in presenting their views and must have patience to accept other’s views. There may also be disagreement between students, but it must be constructive.

Let this disagreement further the learning process. These moral-related activities will help children choose the right ways to solve problems.

Children will be more behaved and disciplined as problems may decrease substantially. Instead of using physical violence as a way to handle a problem, they could tell an adult or solve the problem by making a mature decision.

Developing Narrative Imaginations

Literature and art play a significant role in the development of our narrative imagination. For example, documentary films of the Liberation War of 1971, Tsunami videos, documentaries by Harun Yahyah, plays on the Sipoy Mutiny, The Battle of Polashy, etc., provide students with lessons in patriotism and dedication to freedom.

Fostering Moral Imagination and Emotional Development

The Quran and Hadiths tell us stories to learn from or draw lessons from other nations’ history and others’ experiences. “There is an instruction in their stories for people of intellect” (the Quran, 12:111). “We destroyed those of your kind in the past. But is there any that will receive admonition?” “Narrate to them the stories, so that they may reflect,” (the Quran, 7:176)

Fables, stories, classics of moral philosophy, biographies of great lives can be used to foster moral imagination and emotional development.

It should be seen as “a frame of mind” (Bonnette, 1999) or “habits of heart” (Bellah et al. 1985). A humanistic empathetic approach is needed to incorporate. It is from the idea of Aristotle.

Aesop’s Fables, In the Moonlight Mist: A Korean Tale, Stories of Hans Christian Anderson, Stories from the Iranian Cultural Centre, Stories from the Quran and Hadiths, etc., can be used for moral development purposes.

Kids love to immerse themselves in fairy tales. Some of the most popular stories include Cinderella, Snow White, Rapunzel, King Midas, Hansel and Gretel, which also depict that truth always wins or the defeat of evil.

In “The Wizard of Oz,” Dorothy provides a moral value at the end: “If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire, I’ll never go any farther than my own backyard…if it isn’t there, I never really lost it.” Teachers may use different stories for different grade levels.

Choose books and movies for children that highlight characters with good morals, such as Dora the Explorer, Umi Zumi, Diego, Sesame Street, etc.

Avoid violent cartoons. Parents and teachers also have to be careful about the advertisements. Research shows that advertising subsidizes the cost of these services at the expense of our children’s values, sense of well-being, health, and integrity.

Students can also remake the stories with their own imagination, as one episode of the cartoon ‘Dragon Land’ shows nicely.

In that cartoon, kids have lots of food, so they give it to ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ and help them repair the damage done by Goldilocks. Then they appointed Goldilocks as a governess to the ‘Woman in a Shoe’ who has lots of trouble with too many kids.

They have also given her the spare food. This has been presented here as an example of turning nonsense stories into moral stories. These ideas may be derived from the students, and teachers can assign students to remake traditional stories with their moral imagination.

Let the pupils think and prepare stories themselves. Preparing pictures, completing stories, and telling stories based on a picture—these types of games will be helpful for students to have moral imagination.

Analyzing painted portraits presenting/predicting photographs of an actual event/situation will help. The children are required to predict what had happened and what may happen next, discuss the likely consequences, and explain the meaning and contexts.

Defining and Drilling

Let the students write down how they want to be treated. Talk to the students about the list, and that’s the way to treat others. Let them think about others’ feelings.

Assign students to make a list of values with definitions and to memorize it. This simple memorization may help in the development of the far more complex capacity for making moral decisions within the students.

Giving them the opportunity to prepare the classroom code of conduct with the help of the teacher will make them responsible.

Teachers have to decide what they want to use as a moral compass. It’s essential to make sure to let kids know why these specific moral guidelines are important, rather than blindly following the standards set by school administrators.

Allah says: “Remember Allah, standing, sitting, and reclining, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth, (and say): Our Lord! You have not created all these in vain. Glory be to You! Preserve us from the doom of Fire” (the Quran 3: 191).

General Talks (Draw attention to/ build on incidents)

Teachers may narrate to the students the daily occurrences or incidents happening in the whole world and have a discussion on how to handle those based on values. Rasul (peace be upon him) used to utilize special moments.

As an example, once a child was lost. When the mother found her child, she was feeding the child. Then Rasul (peace be upon him) told that, “Would this mother like to throw this child into hellfire?” The answer was certainly ‘No’. Then he (peace be upon him) narrated that “Allah is much more Merciful.”

We need to discuss morals with our child when they misbehave. Make them understand that they did wrong, its impact, negative consequences of making wrong decisions, and what they could have done instead.

As an example, if a student tells a lie, just sit beside them and explain the adverse effect of telling a lie. Rather, their problem could be solved by telling the truth. Allow them for a written self-evaluation. Provide
them adequate time to review their reasoning for misbehaving and to come up with a solution for further. (Kohlberg’s fourth stage of morality) Here, the teacher can use the student’s critical thinking skills to evaluate their actions and use moral reasoning to evaluate it.

Teacher and parents should allow children to ask questions about morals, so that they can better distinguish right from wrong.

Teaching Methods

A Variety of teaching methods may be used to facilitate self-reflection. As an example, field observation, exploratory method, expeditionary learning projects, Independent Assignments and Group Assignments, etc.

“Have they, then, never journeyed about the earth, letting their hearts gain wisdom, and causing their ears to hear?” (Al-Hajj 22: 46)

Personalized Research

A teacher is always a researcher. According to Lawrence Stenhouse (1975), as students should be encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning so teachers should take responsibility for researching their own deeds and practices.

It begins with the question, ‘How can I improve my work?’ Hence, it is important to be engaged in continual self-critical assessment and review of their ideas, strategies, and goals. (Fisher)

In this context, discussion or dialogue is very important. Discussion, dialogue transmit and generate new ideas or knowledge.

Most ideas improve with the assistance of others or a critical friend. Islam has given priority to collective thinking or ‘shuratic way of thinking.’ Now it becomes easy to share experience through group or teachers’ blog.

Teachers also have to be eager for study. She has to go through the work of earlier thinkers, writers, and researchers. It is also obligatory for every Muslim to read and gain knowledge.

Example/Role Model

Teachers or parents are the role models for the students. Children emulate the values of their caretaker. So if we want kids to act more morally, adults must act more ethically themselves. They should be punctual, truthful.

Don’t give the students confusing signals. Students shouldn’t be taught to cheat or to tell a lie anywhere, whether it’s in the playground, classroom, or at home.

Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Truthfulness leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise. And a man keeps on telling the truth until he becomes a truthful person. Falsehood leads to Al-Fajur (i.e., wickedness, evil-doing), and Al-Fq/wr (wickedness) leads to the (Hell) Fire, and a man may keep on telling lies till he is written before Allah, a liar” (Bukhari Volume 8, Book 73, Number 116).

Kids love to hear stories of caretaker’s personal experiences. Some moments should be there to share stories of personal experience. Children should not be allowed to try to visualize Superman, Spiderman, Batman, Hannah Montana, and so on as their role models.

Rather, teachers or parents have to be their models. Also, tell them the stories of historic real heroes like Omar (RAA), Ali (RAA), Osman (RAA), Khalid ibn Walid, etc.

Psychological Knowledge

To be a successful teacher in the field of moral education, they must have the proper knowledge of child psychology and have to implement it. This includes theories from Dewey, Piaget, Lawrence Kohlberg, Bloom, and others.

Harvard University professor Lawrence Kohlberg believed that a child’s moral development follows a predictable pattern similar to their cognitive development.

According to this perspective, classroom activities should focus on introspection and discussion rather than lectures and memorization, following the stages he proposed.

It should be kept in mind that education is meant to enlighten the soul and, therefore is fundamentally a psychological endowment.

Who I Am Matters

Incorporate values into your classroom like one New York teacher did. Buy a stock of blue ribbons for your students.

Explain to the class that you will use the ribbons to recognize students who have touched your heart because of their kind, generous, or ethical behavior.

Conduct a ceremony once a week in which you give one student two ribbons. Tell the student that they have one week to give one of the blue ribbons to someone who has made a difference in their life. At the following week’s ceremony, the student gets to explain why they gave the ribbon to the person they did.


Up to now, there is no agreeable assessment system for moral education, as we are mostly dependent on paper and pencil tests, although various assessment techniques such as personal observations, interviews, checklists, moral attitude scales, and questionnaires may be used.

Another approach is scaffold questions, which allow the opportunity to reiterate, explain, and then synthesize.

In this perspective, Bloom’s Taxonomy and Paulo Freire’s ideas and approach, especially the concepts of ‘Pedagogy of Questions’ and ‘Problem-Posing,’ will be helpful. It involves all categories of questions for evaluation.

It gives teachers and students an opportunity to learn and practice a range of thinking and provides a simple structure for many different kinds of questions within a single lesson. (Detailed discussion will be found in the ‘Educational Evaluation’ course.)

Another aspect to consider is that an exam-oriented atmosphere is a significant barrier to implementing Value Education. Teachers and parents often encourage students to get higher grades instead of encouraging them to cultivate moral virtues.

However, there is hope that our evaluation system has changed significantly. The new evaluation system (creative assessment) is a gateway to Value Education, but its proper implementation is a subject of study.

Happy Atmosphere/ Good Relationships

A happy atmosphere is indispensable in the classroom. Teacher-student relationships should be such that students will respect the teacher, and they should feel free to share their feelings or problems with teachers.

However, one has to be careful that jokes should not involve any hurt or insult to anyone. Warning the Muslims, Allah’s Messenger said: “No Muslim is allowed to scare another Muslim.” (Abu Dawud)

Joking should not drive a Muslim to lie to make others laugh; this is understood from the Prophet (peace be upon him)’s words: “Woe to him who lies when speaking to make people laugh. Woe to him! Woe to him!” But Rasul (peace be upon him) was not devoid of a humorous attitude.

In this context, we recall the incident when a man came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and said, “O Messenger of Allah! Give me a mount.” The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “We shall give you a she-camel’s child to ride on.” He said, “What shall I do with a she-camel’s child?”

The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied, “Do any others than she-camels give birth to camels?” (Reported by Abu Dawud) Like this way he used to make fun. Allah (SWT) also warns that one should not talk unless their speech is good. “Not a word does one utter, except that there is an (angel) watching. Ready to record it” (the Quran, 18:18).

Special Education

The Quranic verse summarized attitudes towards the mentally ill, who were considered unfit to manage property but must be treated humanely and kept under care by a guardian, according to Islamic law.

This positive neuro-ethical understanding of mental health consequently led to the establishment of the first mental hospitals in the medieval Islamic world in the 8th century. So teachers must not ignore special children’s needs.

School Wide Strategies

Co-curricular Activities

Engage students in games, music, art, and other group activities, such as preparing creative boards, magazines, science projects, etc.

Games like Kabaddi, Cricket, Football, Red Rover, London Bridge, and relay races will encourage them to work with cooperation, justice, understanding of forgiveness and reconciliation, moral obligations of friendship, civil rights, and so on.

  • Plan to provide each student with an active role.
  • Some sequential activities may be helpful in this regard. Here is an example:
  • Arrange a discussion on the topic of kindness.

Lead them with questions like: Can small acts of kindness, regularly carried out, really make a difference in the world? Do good deeds simply permit bad people to do good things on occasion? What would the world look like if everyone committed acts of kindness every day?

Let students come up with a list of kind but substantive deeds. A deed might be a minor one, but don’t ignore it. Guide them as Rasul (peace be upon him) taught us, “A good word is sadaqa.” And “Do not think little of anything which is right, even just showing your brother a cheerful face” (Muslim).

Divide students into pairs or groups and assign them to design, implement, and record acts of kindness in a month.

Finally, hold a conference day in which each pair gets to show off the act they have recorded. Ask the students to reflect upon their experiences. How has it changed their perspectives? How might they incorporate acts like these on a daily basis?

Involving Parents or Guardians

Always maintain contact with parents. Make them understand that it is not possible for teachers alone to develop values without the help of parents. Invite parents as much as possible to participate in school activities. Fundraising for new equipment or study tours may be a good way to boost morale and involve parents.

According to Lickona (1992), children with the most glaring deficiencies in moral values almost always come from troubled families. Indeed, poor parenting is one of the major reasons why schools now feel compelled to get involved in value education.

Another part of the problem is the mass media and the prominent place it occupies in the lives of children. The typical elementary students spend 30 hours a
week in front of the television set.

By age 16, the average child will have witnessed an estimated 200,000 acts of violence and by age 18, approximately 40,000 sexually titillating scenes. Episodes of sexualized violence are increasingly common.

The situation in Bangladesh is also heading in this direction. Cartoons are also initiating violent and abusive scenes. So teachers have to make parents aware.

Observing Different Environmental and Religious Days

Environmental awareness must be built by celebrating Earth Day on April 22, World Environment Day on June 5, Tree Plantation Week in July, Clean up the World on the 3rd weekend in September, etc.

Actions such as recycling and resource recovery, tree planting, education campaigns, water reuse and conservation, competitions (essay writing, wall magazines), exhibitions, etc may be taken.

School authorities should celebrate different religious days like Muharram, Hajj, and Ramadan, etc. On these occasions, recitations, essay writing, lectures, quiz competitions may be organized.

Resources Needed to Implement a Comprehensive Program of Moral Education

In a review of the research on moral education programs, Leming (1993) found that the most effective programs were those that had the widest range of adults (teachers, parents, counselors, and community members) engaged in the moral education of children and youth.

He discovered that the more people in the community were involved, the greater and longer-lasting was the positive effect on student learning, as evidenced in their behavior (CPVEA, p. 58).

The other potential factors are textbooks and curriculum. Textbooks are the conveyors of knowledge as well as values. The values in books have to be conveyed successfully.

We need to review these books and write textbooks considering our own cultural values and also harmonious with universal values. Till then, we need to choose books carefully. Teachers may use their own worksheets depending on the curriculum.

A well-organized library equipped with relevant books and audiovisual instruments will also help. Some value-based books can be found for school-going children in the publications of Good Word Kidz, Olive Publications, Islamic Academic,

According to Farabi, “An isolated individual cannot achieve all the perfections by himself, without the aid of other individuals.” So, it is not the sole responsibility of the schools. However, the school has to work with the cooperation of the community as a whole.

School Get-togethers Such as Assemblies

School assemblies will teach the students uniformity and discipline. Students should be taught the etiquette of gathering.

Some of these are mentioned below as examples from Rasul (peace be upon him): “He was always cheerful, easy-mannered, and lenient. He was not rough, noisy, vulgar, insulting, or miserly. He used to overlook what he disliked without depriving others of hope or answering them negatively. He refrained from disputation, prattling, and curiosity. He spared others from three things: He never censured, found fault with, or spied on them. He spoke only what he hoped would be rewarded. When he spoke, his listeners lowered their heads quietly, and when he was silent, they spoke. They never spoke haphazardly in front of him. If one talked in his presence, they listened to him until he had finished. He used to laugh and wonder at what they laughed or wondered at. He was patient with strangers who were rude in both their talk and requests” (look for the “Etiquettes and Manners in Islam” book).

It means ‘get-together’ teaches man to be cordial and amiable to one another at the cost of tolerance, sacrifice, etc., which are unique qualities of man’s life and society.

Staff Should Treat Each Other with Respect

Teachers’ and staff’s understanding will boost the pupils’ morale.

Students will also learn manners from staff behavior. It is also a religious duty to respect each other. It may be termed as school morale. It requires to be examined holistically and connected from all angles, like students, teachers, parents, administrators, and the community.

Listening to the needs of the students, parents, teachers, and staff and addressing immediate concerns will boost the morale of the school. Paying respect duly makes one encouraged and faithful in doing the job.

Abu Musa al-Ash’ari reported that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “A slave who worships his Lord well and gives his master the right which he owes him, and good advice and obedience has two rewards” (al-Bukhari).

Allah Almighty says, “Worship Allah and do not associate anything with Him. Be good to your parents and relatives and to orphans and the very poor, and to neighbors who are related to you and neighbors who are not related to you, and to companions and travelers and your slaves” (the Quran, 4:36).

Voluntary Service

Learning through practical group work can be another strategy, in which the students shall voluntarily work on a weekly/monthly basis to clean the area, help the distressed people of flood tornado victims, help the poor with their own saved money, make people aware by requesting people not to smoke in public places, and many more.

A sense of accomplishment can be generated through this kind of work.

We also know from our legacy that such Muslim adolescents of the past as Usamah ibn Zaid and Imam al-Shafi’i served on the battlefield as the captains of soldiers, leading prayers and study circles as the imam, respectively.

Pupils to be Respected as Individuals

Each student has to be taken care of as an individual, and their developmental needs, such as age, gender, family contexts, reading skills, thinking styles, and so on, have to be considered. It will help them to be responsible and apprehend the teaching.

The Prophet of Allah (SWT) was always conscious of his audience’s background, education, and culture – always addressing them at their level, with words they would comprehend and to which they could relate. He (peace be upon him) used to identify the learners and organize the content appropriate to their level.

For example: There is a Hadith that “Whoever says La Ilaha Illallah, will go to Jannah.” Rasul (peace be upon him) has asked his companions not to spread this Hadith to general people as somebody can misinterpret it, taking it literally.

Also, try to create a learning environment in which students feel a sense of investment, ownership, and empowerment. They must have a clear concept about the need for the subjects they read.

Consider how authority and responsibility can be given to the students, like calling them to write on the board, presenting any assignment in front of the class, making them understand any mathematical problem to their weaker peers, rotation-wise class captain, etc.

Try to find out the brighter/significant aspects of each student and then try to utilize that. Also, respect their feelings.

Instilling Some Basic Thoughts

It needs to instill some basic beliefs or feelings inside students to establish firm values in society.

Consciousness of Almighty

The teaching approach should represent Allah as He is; of all His names, the ones most often recited are al-Rahman and al-Rahim.

Therefore, He should be presented as the Most Merciful and the Most Compassionate. He is not cold, for He is al-Ghaffur (the Most Forgiving). This implies that all students, being human, are liable to make mistakes.

They should not be punished immediately, for Allah indicates a system of gradual punishments. Therefore, students should be encouraged to gain His love and pleasure for its usefulness and significance, not only the fear of Hell or gaining Heaven.

Students also need to have consciousness of Allah (SWT). As for the individual who somehow has the power to do anything that he likes, however, there is no longer any reason to be just or moral (CPVEA, p. 20).

It also needs to make them understand that every human being has some responsibilities as the best creation of Allah (SWT). Furthermore, the fear of Allah’s punishment, the Day of Judgment, and hellfire were the tools used by Allah himself, thus, we may use the same.

They need to remember: “Who has created death and life, that He may test which of you is the best in conduct” (the Quran, 67:2).

Preserving Good Intention

To think about self-inclination is the most important task before doing something.

As Allah says: “Your Lord best knows what is in your minds. If you live righteously, He surely forgives and turns towards all such people as are penitent and obedient” (the Quran, 17:25).

Both teachers and students have specific goals, aims, and objectives. They have to keep in mind the Hadith that the prior aim of education is to realize the creation of Allah (SWT). The other objectives should be based on this. The Prophet (peace be upon him) stated:

“Whoever makes this world his only goal, God will confuse his affairs and place poverty before his eyes, and he will be able to attain nothing from this world except for what God has already written for him…

“Whoever sets the Hereafter as his goal, God gathers his affairs for him, gives him the richness of (faith in) the heart, and the world will come to him grudgingly and submissively” (Ibn Maajah, Ibn Hibbaan).

Muslims believe that a good teacher who imparts good knowledge is prayed for by every living thing, according to the authentic Hadith from the Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), who was reported to have said: “Verily Allah, His angels, the inhabitants of the heavens and the earth, even the ant in its hole, and even the fish pray for a good teacher” (Tirmidh & authenticated by Albani).

Removing Consumerist Tendency

Consumerist tendencies derail a person from the right path. Singer shows that ethics and self-interest are necessarily opposed in the context of an affluent consumer society where people are concerned only about personal ambitions and consumption (Singer cited in CPVLA, 2000).

Here are some examples that might be cited from Chinese ethics, especially from the Confucian philosopher Mencius, who contrasts human dignity with consumerist tendencies.

Students must realize that they have many duties other than their own selfishness or self-indulgence. That’s why teachers might arrange visits to slums, orphanages, old homes, refugee camps, or areas affected by natural disasters to show students the practical aspects of life.

Association with the less fortunate will soften the hardest of hearts and open our eyes to things we have not seen before. Let them provide some voluntary service there. There are ample opportunities for students to teach underprivileged children.

While dealing with the material world, we should not keep focusing on those who are better off than us; otherwise, we will never be satisfied with what we have. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“If you give the son of Adam a valley of gold, he would want another one” (Saheeh Muslim).

We cannot achieve satisfaction in the material world if we are chasing after it in such a way; rather, we should look to those who are less fortunate. This way, we will remember the gifts, benefits, and mercy that God has bestowed upon us regarding our wealth, no matter how little it may seem.

Pupils must realize that only self-interest is self-defeating. A prosperous society with a focus on others and larger goals gives mental contentment. Moreover, superficial inclination is a form of worldly distraction that drives us far away from our true nature, which is Fitrah.

Self-criticism and Recognition of One’s Own Predicament

Self-criticism, self-reckoning, and self-accountability are forms of worship.

Allah says: “Behold! If you did good, it proved to be good for yourselves, and if you committed evil, it proved to be bad for your own selves” (the Quran, 17:7). “Whosoever adopts the righteous way, his righteous conduct will be for his own good, and whosoever goes astray, his deviation shall bring its consequences on him. No bearer will bear the burden of another. And We do not inflict punishment until We have sent a Messenger (to make Truth distinct from falsehood)” (the Quran, 17:15).

“O you believer! Remain conscious of Allah and keep your duty to Him; and let every human being look to what he sends ahead for the morrow (Hereafter)! And (once again): Remain conscious of Allah, for Allah is fully aware of all that you do” (Quran 59:18).

So both teachers and students have to be conscious of their own duty and responsibility, as well as convey this message to their pupils. Engage in a serious dialogue with the heart. There are many times when the heart actually protests against our wrongdoings.

Again, Allah warned: “Man invokes evil instead of goodness, for he is very hasty and impatient.” We are imperfect human beings living in an imperfect world. The recognition of one’s own related vulnerability is, then, an important and frequently indispensable epistemological requirement for compassion in human beings. Being able to imagine the other person’s predicament is the beginning of compassion (Julia TAO, CPVEA).

Then the child will better understand others and will refine and control their own feelings. Another Hadith may be cited here in this regard: “Whoever does not have mercy upon the people, then Allah does not have mercy upon him” (Collected by Bukhari & Muslim).

Ibn Miskawayh introduced the concept of ‘self-reinforcement,’ where he advises Muslims who feel guilt must learn to punish themselves physically or psychologically through charity, fasting, etc.

Building the Base

Remind your students that they are doing all these acts only to please Allah (SWT). Explain why we need to please Allah (SWT) and how every action, including taking food and doing math homework, will help us achieve that goal.

From each subject, and each activity of the school, teachers have to make the students understand the value system of Islam with special reference to obedience, worship, and submission to Allah and His Messenger.

This includes;

  • the prohibition of selfishly devouring wealth and hoarding,
  • fighting in the way of Allah,
  • distinguishing between lawful (halal) and unlawful (haram) actions, and understanding their duties towards Allah,
  • fellow human beings, parents, spouses, kinsmen, neighbors, orphans, the needy, indigents,
  • Muslim brothers, and moral values such as truthfulness,
  • chastity,
  • honesty,
  • keeping promises,
  • meekness,
  • politeness,
  • forgiveness,
  • mercy,
  • justice,
  • love,
  • goodness,
  • patience,
  • steadfastness,
  • courage,
  • forbearance,
  • self-sacrifice, and
  • moderation.

The students need to realize the opposite sides and their adverse effects, including munkarat (disvalues) in Islam, particularly hypocrisy, injustice, boastfulness, unkindness, hatred, disunity, destruction of life, and other satanic tendencies.

Above all, the base of a student’s education should be their religion, followed by general education, and then specialized education. This is more pertinent in the context of the religion of Islam. Actually, this is related to educational policy itself.

Allah (SWT) taught us: “Rubbey zidni lima!”

O Rubb — Allah! Grant me ‘Ilm ‘ — ‘Irfan ‘ — Grant me Enlightenment!

‘Ilm ‘ is not just Information or even Education but Enlightening Wisdom.


In our country, the school atmosphere is highly competitive in material aspects. This situation needs to be changed immediately so that a suitable environment for value education can be established. Large class sizes are also a barrier to realizing value in education. It’s a matter of great hope that our government has a plan to appoint more teachers.

Teacher Training Colleges and institutions should have practical tasks oriented toward this course. A “Department of Value Education” has to be established to generate specialists in this area of study.

It’s upon a teacher to select how to incorporate values. A moral character is a complex, stable state consisting of moral knowing, feeling, and doing.

A teacher needs to constantly look for interesting materials and arrange various opportunities through which students may develop moral emotions and experience moral behaviors, and moral lessons can be imparted to the students in all subjects.

Teachers must understand that their major roles are to think, guide, initiate, facilitate, and encourage the learners. Other requirements include sincerity, loyalty, eagerness, devotion, and dedication. According to Fisher (1998), “A good teacher makes you think even when you don’t want to.”