Teaching ethics to a small child is absolutely appropriate. There is no better time to begin teaching the concepts of moral right and wrong. Of course always teach to the level of the child and be sure to listen to the responses to ensure the material is being received. I would teach the concrete message and not the philosophy.
Civics, not so much. Social studies seems to be well placed in primary school. If the child expresses particular interest, however, I always believe in providing as much answer as needed to satisify the questioner.
Oh, yes. Character traits, ethics, should be taught early on. Using age appropriate methods, it will benefit the child and those around him or her.
Ethics, civics and morals need to be taught preferably at an young age before the child decides mentally as to what is right and what is wrong. It is next to impossible to change personal traits after a particular age.
However today's world as it is, at a more mature age the child should be introduced to the realities of the world as he or she grow up; If this is not done the child may turn out to be an unfit in the world as he or she may not be able to cope with the crookedness he or she has to face in real life.
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