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Ellen Feig

Professor, Bergen Community College


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Can one teach young people to be moral? Is morality something that must be taught in the home? Is it innate?

Currently I am working on a professional development platform focused on teaching college students ethics and morality. Young people seem to be incredibly disengaged from others, have little sense of what it means to be moral, gracious or ethical and don't care. How can we teach morality or is it something that is innate?

Topics: ethics morality

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  • Jan 25 2013: Morality is a very personal yet vague notion. Every society has or had thier own form of norms that would be equated to morals. I believe parents play an extremely important role in the moral growth of their children. Sharing personal stories and learning points work to a certain extent.

    Proviidng quantity time as opposed to quality time made a difference to me as a child. Whenever I wanted to talk or such, my dad would always be there for me, even though he was pulling in minimum wage and long hours. HE instilled in me a great sense of responsibility as well as a sense of morals that have put me in good stead with my peers. While morals may shift, the values we give as significant figures in children's life enable them to evolve.

    As an educator, I applaud you in your attempt to teach ethics and morality. It's not easy. Especially as they come to you at this age, where they have already 'tasted' the world.
    The Scouts have a term that Scouting means 'Doing". Nothing beats a lesson on morality than to get into the trenches and do physical work.

    Using lesson times to work at the homeless shelters/orphanages to make new furniture or to even organise long term stints as "Big Brother' to the underpriviledged and other such programmes will really help them to shape their ethics and sense of morality. It did for me.

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