How Does VbE Work?

Children adopt the values they experience, not the values that are dictated to them

"My parents are very pleased, and ask me how we do values"

Values-based Education works through:

Values Consciousness
Teachers think more deeply about their teaching and the values that they model both in and outside of the classroom. Students report how a values consciousness impact on their behaviour and actions, which become more altruistic.

In thinking about and enacting values, students develop self-worth, empathy and responsible personal behaviour. Evidence shows that Values Education has a very positive effect on students who are ‘at risk’, marginalised or disadvantaged. There is compelling evidence that wellbeing impacts are experienced by teachers, parents and families, and in classroom and across whole schools.

Agency is the capacity of individuals to act independently, to make choices and act on them. The evidence shows that Values Education strengthens student agency when it involves various forms of giving, outreach and working in the community. For instance, through values action projects that allowed students to enact their values in a way that is personal, real and deeply engaging.

Values-based Education builds positive and wide-ranging connections between teachers, students and parents. It supports student engagement in learning, improves parent engagement in their children’s learning and allows teachers to develop new relationships with their students, each other and the parents and families in their school community. This is done through shared goals and practices in Values Education, which leads to the development of mutual feelings of respect, trust and safety; and varied opportunities for collaboration. The research findings show that the values lead to improved behaviour in the classroom, school and home.

Change and transformation are at the heart of Values Education and is the result of teachers and students being urged to engage in continuous reflection on the actions they implemented in their schools. Key changes are seen in professional practice as well as personal attitudes, behaviours, relationships and group dynamics. Transformations are experienced and observed by teachers, students and parents alike. The data points to profound transformations in student learning. Students develop deeper understanding of complex issues and how these pertain to their own lives. Students and parents experience personal change and report changes seen in others.

As a result of the above, many schools report improvements in a wide range of individual achievement, and academic attainment. Students report a deeper engagement in and connection to their learning and demonstrate an understanding of the responsibilities this entails for themselves and others.


From My Heart
Neil Hawkes

This is a book that guides readers on how to bring values into their consciousness, thereby improving their well being and that of their family, community and working environment.