Character Development

— The Medicine Wheel: Developing Character and Values —

“Good character is more to be praised than outstanding talent. Most talents are to some extent a gift. Good character, by contrast, is not given to us. We have to build it piece by piece – by thought, choice, courage and determination.”

– John Luther

At Cherokee Creek, our character-development curriculum is the foundation for each student’s and family’s journey. At the core of the curriculum is a model based on the values of Courage, Truth, Love and Wisdom. We call it the Medicine Wheel.

As boys continue their emotional, intellectual, spiritual and social development through adolescence, their understanding of morality grows as well … and their behavior becomes more closely aligned with their values and beliefs.

Understanding the importance of these values, and trying to live by them, provides boys with a ‘MORAL COMPASS’ that can help them to make good life decisions … “to discover what is real and true about themselves and the world around them”. This is one of the important tasks of the middle-school years.

The Medicine Wheel

Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School Medicine Wheel with Values and I Am Statements

“Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones.”

– Phillips Brooks

The Medicine Wheel Model was created by cultural anthropologist Angeles Arrien and introduced in her book The Four-Fold Way. Based on decades of research, this model conveys “perennial wisdom” – values, beliefs and themes that are shared and expressed by at least 85% of the cultures of the world. With permission from Dr. Arrien, we added elements to the wheel to make learning relevant and age-appropriate. It provides the framework for our character education and permeates the curriculum and the culture of the school.

Throughout his time with us, each student will be given tasks, responsibilities and personal challenges in the form of social skills and projects to help him grow, understand himself, and develop his character. This powerful work is customized to each student and is guided by a Primary Mentor, who helps each boy move at his own pace.

Discovering the meaning and actions of COURAGE, LOVE, TRUTH and WISDOM can help boys build a life of balance, harmony and character.

“People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously.
This is how character is built.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt
Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School Medicine Wheel Montage
CCBS Boys Canoeing | A Place Where Boys Can Be Boys