On Wednesday our Form 8 pupils led assembly and spoke about each of our school values. They used the examples of sports men and women and how, through them, we can see how people have put values into practice. It served to remind me of the importance of sport as a vehicle for teaching and developing values and thus character. Of course, as with most prep schools, we devote significant amounts of our week to the coaching and practice of sport so it is right to be able to justify this. And it’s not just mens sana in corpore sano; it’s also, often, the perfect vehicle for developing new skills and attitudes; sports provide the pegs upon which to hang new learning and a framework within which a clearer understanding of the world can be built.
Listening to them speak it struck me that, as it is with sports players, so it is with values. One sports player alone doesn’t make a strong team and, similarly, one value alone doesn’t make a resilient character. Quite the opposite in fact; one strongly developed value of itself creates vulnerability but, when bundled together with others, a strong character emerges. I for one am going to spend more time focussing on our values in their entirety rather than focussing on just one at time...
John F Gilmour