Pre-K–Grade 4
The Experience

Character Education

At Fessenden, the core of our mission is character education: a conscientious focus on honesty, compassion, and respect in an inclusive community.

Character education is as vital to our culture and curriculum as field trips and foreign language--and it has been since our founding. It is woven into music lessons, mealtimes, and physical education. It can be found in our interactions with one another and the choices we make when no one is looking.
Character education is intentional and all-encompassing to a Fessenden boy’s experience. It comprises four major components:
  • Strengthening boys’ emotional and physical well-being
  • Promoting service learning and a sense of responsibility to others
  • Teaching our core values of honesty, compassion, and respect
  • Developing leadership skills
For younger boys, we start simply, focusing on “what it means to be a good friend,” and, “why we celebrate our differences.” We focus on one concept a month (such as “friendship” or “generosity”), which offers many opportunities for discussions and activities. Through repetition, we nurture kindness, inclusivity, and respect.

Over time, the values we instill benefit boys as they take on leadership opportunities, serve others, and become strong role models in the upper grades.

Character Education in Action

At Fessenden, boys benefit from character-building guidance during opportunities that arise naturally during the day. We also aim to present boys with intentional and thoughtfully integrated character-building experiences, including:
  • Sharing examples of positive behavior and respect at morning meeting
  • Learning about kindness and signing an annual “Kindness Contract”
  • Creating e-books to describe and illustrate what friendship means
  • Developing respect, empathy, and sympathy by reading and talking about people facing unique challenges
© 2015 The Fessenden School. All Rights Reserved.
The Fessenden School
250 Waltham Street
West Newton, MA 02465
(617) 964-5350

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