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Importance of Positive Role Models in Teaching Moral Values In Schools

Updated on July 15, 2020
Paul Kuehn profile image

Paul grew up on a farm where moral virtues such as hard work and honesty were cherished. Each of his classes has a moral lesson.

A Mother as a Role Model


Need for Positive Role Models in Schools

If we are going to have a better society for today and the future, it is necessary to teach our kids moral values in school. One of the best ways to do this is to expose our children at the earliest age in school to positive role models in our society. This article first examines the qualities of both positive and negative role models and then suggests ways that schools can help students connect with exemplary role models.

Author with sixth grade students in Thailand  on a field trip in 2010.
Author with sixth grade students in Thailand on a field trip in 2010. | Source

What Is a Role Model?

Role models are people who play a big part in the lives of students. Students look up to these persons and try to follow their actions. For one reason or another, they are heroes to kids for what they have accomplished. In the world today, as we all know, some role models exert a very positive influence on students' lives. Unfortunately, there are also many people as role models who have an extremely negative influence on kids' lives.

Positive Role Models

When I was a young boy, Superman was one of my first heroes and role models. I remember watching Superman every day on TV, and marveling at how he was "faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings with a single bound." I was even more spellbound by how he could fly, and in fighting for truth, justice, and the American way, always could defeat the "bad guys." I sent in for his shirt, and after receiving it in the mail, I wore it with the big "S" proudly to school as much as I could.

Cowboys like The Lone Ranger, Gene Autry, and Roy Rogers were also my role models and heroes. I especially liked The Lone Ranger, because he always fought for truth and justice and came out on top against the villains. It was so exciting listening to his early radio programs in the early 1950s.

Later, my parents, teachers, and high school football coach became role models for the moral values they taught me. Mom and dad taught me to be honest and work hard. My teachers and especially the Catholic school nuns taught me to be loving and compassionate. Coach taught me valuable lessons in teamwork and perseverance for success.

Negative Role Models

The problem today is that too many students are exposed to negative role models. Many kids come from broken single-parent homes where they don't have a mother or a father as a positive role model. Instead, they look up to the young drug dealer down the street who is wearing flashy clothes and shoes and riding in a limousine. Young people today are also bombarded with a decadent media which glorifies singers and rappers who degrade women and advocate violence. They also see prostitutes and other promiscuous young men and women who appear happy and smartly dressed.

Positive Role Models

Positive Role Models

How Can Schools Connect Students With Positive Role Models?

Due to the lack of positive role models in the failing family institution and society today, it is imperative for schools to inculcate moral values by connecting students with exemplary teachers and model citizens in society. The schools can do this in the following way:

1. Hire Exemplary Teachers and Coaches to Be Positive Role Models

Before being hired, the criminal records of all prospective teachers and coaches must be closely examined. By doing this, the schools ensure that no murderers, thieves, or pedophiles are being employed. Teachers and coaches with unquestionable character are the best sources for imparting moral values at schools.

2. Encourage Visits From Successful Law-abiding Alumnae

Besides hiring teachers with excellent moral values, schools should identify successful, respectful alumnae and bring them back to the classroom to speak with students. If the alumnae are not too old, the students will listen to their advice due to the mutual bond they have with the school.

3. Encourage Visits From Young People Who Have Cleaned Up Their Lives

Bringing young recovered drug addicts and/or ex-cons into the classroom and letting kids hear their experiences, will go a long way in connecting with students. Many young people who have had drug problems or problems with the law will be able to identify with these people because they have all walked in the same shoes.

4. Encourage Visits From Popular Sports Figures

All students admire a highly successful sports figure like Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. Schools should be encouraged to bring in successful professional or college sports stars from the local city or state teams to speak with students about what it takes to be successful in life.

The importance of positive role models taking part in the teaching of moral values in schools cannot be overstated. By doing this, we will be taking a big step in making our society better for today and our children tomorrow.

My speech and junior varsity football coach, Mr. Anderson, an excellent  role model.
My speech and junior varsity football coach, Mr. Anderson, an excellent role model. | Source

Positive Role Models

Do you think young people are lacking positive role models today?

See results

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2012 Paul Richard Kuehn


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    • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Richard Kuehn 

      7 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand


      I'm very happy you enjoyed reading this hub. It's great that you share my ideas about role models! Thank you very much for sharing on Hubpages and Facebook as well as tweeting and pinning this article.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Very useful and interesting read, Paul. Role models have to be of spotless character and successful to set a model example for students to follow.

      Voted up, useful, pinned, shared here, on facebook and tweeted.

    • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Richard Kuehn 

      7 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand


      Thanks for reading this hub and your insightful comments.

    • Mellonyy profile image


      8 years ago

      Great hub! Teaching our kids respect others, learn them how to listen, teach them to be honest and not to lie, and so on. Thanks for sharing!

    • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Richard Kuehn 

      8 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand


      Thank you very much for your comments. Yes, having assemblies with positive role models leading the way is still another great way to teach moral values in schools.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      8 years ago from New York

      It seems there aren't many good role models any more, at first glance. Baseball players and other athletes are doing drugs, priests, and teachers are molesting children....that said, you are right about providing positive role models and there are still some out there. Your list is a good one and certainly would help provide better morals to the students of today..wouldn't students be better served to have 'assemblies' with positive role models leading the way?

      I hope lots of teachers and school administrators read this hub...Voted up, useful and interesting.


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