Wheaton Park District has adopted an initiative called Character Counts which has already been implemented at several Community Unit School District 200 schools. The Character Counts program promotes six core ethical values: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and good citizenship. We ask as a parent, spectator, official, participant or coach of a Wheaton Park District sport that you put these values into action through the program.
Program: Take 5 for Character
Description: This program will be implemented in the youth sports programs of the Wheaton Park District. We ask that all coaches “Take 5 for Character” at the end of each practice and sporting event. This means participants, coaches and parents set aside five minutes to talk about what they could do in order to demonstrate good character. Here are some ideas for discussion topics:
- Be honest; don’t make excuses for your mistakes.
- Don’t steal.
- Build a good reputation.
- Be loyal to your team and community.
- Do what you say you’ll do; keep your word.
- Support your teammates and be encouraging.
- Have the courage to do the right thing.
- Clean up garbage around players’ benches, spectators’ bleachers, and surrounding areas.
- Shake hands with opposing teams and, if a particular athlete played well, go out of your way to congratulate him or her.
- Do not celebrate excessively after scoring a basket or goal.
- Talk about what sportsmanship-like conduct should include.
- Do not use bad language or put down teammates or players of another team.
- Recognize someone who has had a nice play, basket or hit.
- Respect referees and umpires.
- Be on time and be accountable; if you cannot come to a game or practice, make sure you tell the coach.
- Use self-control.
- Be a good loser and do not blame the referees.
- Think before you act.
- Follow the Golden Rule.
- Take responsibility for your own actions; do not blame others.
- Be tolerant of differences and deal with disagreements peacefully.
- Always do your best.
- When you make a bad play, do not blame other teammates.
- Listen to others and don’t be a “ball hog”; work as a team.
- Play by the rules.
- Understand that you cannot play every minute of the game; sometimes you will have to sit out an inning or a quarter. Learn to cheer from the bench.
- Don’t run up the score.
- When you tackle, knock someone down, or collide with another player, lend a hand and help them up, even if they are not on your team.
- Cheer on someone if they make a good play, even if they are not on your team.
- Be a gracious loser.
- If someone gets hurt, be sympathetic.
- Be compassionate and show that you care.
- Thank your coaches for their time, effort and hard work.
- Set a positive example.
- Respect the facility.
- Respect authority.
- When traveling to other communities, take pride in the team and community you represent and make a good impression.
- Obey laws and rules.
- Protect the environment.