NDSU Distance & Continuing Education (DCE)

Bringing Education to You

K-12 Professionals

Educating Students on Character

EDUC 600




Instructor: Sandra Opheim

Grading: Letter or S/U

Spring, Summer & Fall (Ongoing)

Instruction Mode: Correspondence

Academic Level: K-12 Professional Development

NDSU Credit Fee: $320

Course Description:

Course participants will read the text Life’s Greatest Lessons:  20 Things That Matter by Hal Urban.  Participants are then asked to evaluate their school’s current curriculum and resources in character education.    Topics in the text include humor in life, choices, attitude, success, fairness, honesty, positive habits, motivation, and goal setting.  All of these qualities are important for life-long learners in the PK-12 classroom.  Through the evaluation process participants will create age appropriate lesson plans for the topics addressed in the text.  These lessons will be ready to use in the classroom so teachers can apply what has been learned in this course.  It is a great start to a character education program.  Participants will be asked to conduct interviews with colleagues, write reflections journals articles, and respond to activities that improve student involvement in character education topics.

Goals & Objectives:

As a result of this participation in this course, students should:

  1. Develop lesson plans for teaching positive character to students and to integrate this into the everyday lives of students.
  2. Examine character qualities and develop an activity to teach the topic.
  3. Examine character qualities and develop a skit or role-play situation to use in the classroom.
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of chapters read from the required book through written response.


Urban, Hal.  (1992 ).  Life’s Greatest Lessons:  20 Things That Matter.  New York:  Fireside.

Rimm-Kaufmann, S.  (2006). “Social and Academic Learning Study on the Contribution of the Responsive Classroom Approach.”  Retrieved from www.responsiveclassroom.org/about/research.html on April 18, 2012.

About The Instructor

Sandra Opheim
Sandra Opheim earned an M.S. in Elementary Education from St. Mary's University. Her B.S. in Elementary Education is from the University of Minnesota. Sandra also has her Middle School Licensure in English from Bemidji State University. Sandra has over 18 years of experience teaching elementary education. She is the author of "Whose Hat is That?" published in 2004 and has also published articles in the Lake Country Journal Magazine and Her Voice Magazine.

Special Instructions:

The total cost includes the NDSU graduate credit however textbook is not included.

**Registration Instructions:

A minimum $20 processing fee will be assessed per person for cancellations received after the start of the course. Refunds are not issued after the start of the course or after access to the course has been provided.

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