Today, as in the past, the triad, family, school, and community, is formed by institutions, in which a system of values should be built in order to give legitimacy and viability to the Nation. The school, with its own teaching nature is, without a doubt, the one in charge of guiding the axiological route that allows society to cohesion and build responsible citizens, ready to face the challenges that social, economic, cultural and political changes have brought, and that their participation would be to guarantee a prosperous, pacific and certainly happy country.

The objective of this book oneducating with values, proposed by Tamaulipas Integral Family Development (Sistema para el Desarrollo Integral de la Familia de Tamaulipas, DIF, for its initials in Spanish)is to complement the Tamaulipas Education Ministry’s program of civic education and ethics (SET,for its initials in Spanish). To contribute to the reinforcement school, family and society through education with values is one of the most important tasks of DIF Tamaulipas. School,because of its essence and vocation, because of its function and influence, and because of the time students spend there, becomes the perfect place to reinforce learning values among students, not only in its ethical approach, but also in preparing them as future active citizens participating in their duties with their Nation.

Two sense dimensions in educational systems

There are two dimensions regarding contemporary educational systems that give legitimacy and importance to the formation and preservation of the institutions in society, and to the incorporation of the following generations for their development. The first dimension is stated as the one having the function of transmitting knowledge through appropriate educational models where teaching is the main purpose the second dimension refers to accomplishing the complex process of forming students to integrate them to society as responsible peopleby educating them with values as a unique way of teaching, which prepare them for life, in their development as human beingsand to actively participate in the perfection of their own society.

For both dimensions, teaching and formation, there exists paradoxical situations, which some how limit their application. When teaching, not only does pertinent criteria complicate its functionality, but also –paradoxically- the increasing amount of knowledge that the geniuses of the scientific-technologic revolution constantly generate, and the frequent development of theories on society, culture, economy and politics, which encourages and renews social practice, to the point that school time available for teaching becomes limited. For formation, not only the available time is reduced, but because of its exceptional nature, its teaching becomes somewhat complex, due to the fact that it cannot separate the person who is learning from what has to be learnt, as it happens with other subjects in the curriculum, such as Physics, Chemistry, Biology, etc.

In other words, the aspects of subjectivity, emotions, affections, sensitivity and personal experiences need a different approach from the one who is solely transmitting knowledge. Because of the scarcity of time, it becomes necessary for the student to learn actively, to search for knowledge in available sources: libraries, Internet, cultural sections in the newspaper or magazines, and audiovisual aids from movies, television and theater.

It is clear that a world in constant change needs that the subjects of education become active. The main objective is to encourage and develop own learning, and to develop cognitive (motivational) skills, which prepare them for continuous learning. Simple repetition and memorization, encyclopedic teaching, discipline and textbook centered teaching are not sufficient to achieve new knowledge. This requires knowledge comprehension, giving importance to the significance of processes,students’ organization forms based in self-management of knowledge, the role of libraries as a teaching resource, the qualitative evaluations as well as the quantitative ones, and the careful use of new information technologies in the quest for knowledge.

The formation as an educational dimension doesn’t mean that it is a purely intuitive or reflexive approach. It must rely, the same as other aspects of learning on a group of systematic procedures that could take it to the continuation of a learnt event.

When we talk about the training of students with values, particularly in the first stages of learning, we are referring, not only to the acquisition of certain positive behaviors, butalso to the internalization of a group of values which shall guide them in their life and interactions in all the social areas where they have to be included and participate.

The problem of how to trigger this learning process of values, that becomes affected by the influence of multiple sociocultural behavioral models which are presented to the students on a regular basis, this fact takes us to consider a special way of teaching, that allows us to focus on what must be learnt, and could give them a certain autonomy against the perverse stimuli from other behavioral models. This way of teaching has been explained as learning through competencies.

In the same way that the students will have to learn a number of competencies to obtain a relevant, appropriate and useful education for their lives and their community participation, we must be aware that the teacher must be able to master competencesas well to educate the students with values. This implies the acquisition of a new role as a teacher, that must be not only as a mentor, but also as an adviser, counselor, tutor, friend, and partner in the knowledge construction of students, of course, without trying to replace their learning.

The objective of this book is precisely, not only giving the teacher a group of resources to improve the education with values, but also, to let the teacher work in personal achievement of the group of competencies that are necessary for teaching.

It is evident that the school has been transformed, and together with it, the knowledge that has to be taught to students. The most important actors have changed their roles, some of them for good, and others for worse. However, the school as an institution is still the citizens’ favorite, and also one of the most demanded by them. Its mission of being the place where knowledge is expected to acquirea better position, and opportunities of development within society, all this makes it vulnerable to all the critical situations of the same society. People expect too much from school, and in correspondence, not always has enough resources to satisfy all the demands that education imposes in this new era we are currently living.

Contemporary society imposes growing challenges to educational institutions and to those who are part of them, whether they are principals, teachers, students, or employees. Nevertheless, it keeps on being a niche where the new generations learn how to be part of the change and development of society. To summarize, we could say, that education with values allows us to discover who we are, how to improve, to whom and for whom we do it.

“Tell me which values you have and I will tell you who you are”, as the Stagirite philosopher would say.

The importance of values facing the challenges of contemporary Tamaulipas’ society

Tamaulipas’ society is not isolated from the changes that are happening in all societies in the world. These changes have deeply affected the lifestyles of its inhabitants, their costumes, traditions and rules for living. Having a territory that connects with the United States has brought not only some complications, but economic opportunities as well.

The changes brought by globalization, and particularly by the North America Free Trade Agreement, signed by the United States, Mexico and Canada, caused industrialization to widely develop and social, economic and demographic characteristics of this region radically change. Tamaulipas became a point of attraction to the people in southern Mexico, and also to people in other nations. Its population grew in a way that it affected its previous and well-balanced distribution in its main cities, becoming, an attractive point for employment and economic development. In the south, is the conurbation of Altamira, Tampico and Ciudad Madero, as an effect of the consolidation of oil extraction and petro chemistry industry, as well as for having two of the most important seaports in Mexico. In the north, the bordering region attracted most of the migration motivated by the national and international manufacturing industry implanted there or seeking an opportunity of migrating to the United States.

The speeding process of change in the Tamaulipas’ population to an industrial and service society had noticeable consequences. All this change was not entirely positive. It could be summarized in a relative crisis of values and mistrust towards many of the institutions that regulate daily life.

Education with values is not a simple task. The school has to face the competence of many social agents whose influence is out of proportion because of the resources they have. The media and entertainment have invaded almost all the leisure time of children, teenagers, youth and adults, which contribute to the deterioration of many values and to their extreme relativity. They tend to show habits, costumes and norms that are prone to convert the audience into subjects of consumption, addicts to violent shows, and to the exposition to models of behaviors that are not legally accepted, or they weaken the consolidation of personal social networks.

It is not enough to simply mention that certain examples given in the media, or in neighborhood living, or even in the same family are negative, in order forstudents to avoid them. It is another approach that must be used. The exercise of this axiological teaching proposed covers the need of generating meaningful experiences, involving conditions, necessary reflections, and productive dialogues that result in a conscience of actions and a rationale of their consequences. No one can learn from someone else’s experience. That is, the students have to be able to “make it conscious”, to incorporate it not only to their knowledge background, but also to their everyday behavior when they are faced with conflicts presented in their lives.

Educational investigation has developed several procedures to make more efficient what we can design as complex learning; especially those that can be applied to various vital situations. From this class of transversal learning, values are conformed. Because of this, to make values beunderstood, it is necessary that they are interiorized and become part of the internal norms that control the actions of the person. Techniques that represent relatively complex environments are required, but within a scale that is manageable by the school and classroom environments.

Scenarios have the most versatility, adequacy, and adaptability to accomplish the objectives of an education with values.It is because of this characteristic that this technique has been selected, due to the fact that it allows a process of immersion of students in meaningful situations, in which they can activelysolve problems, dilemmas, and conditions, generating and building their own and shared learning.

The people of Tamaulipas and values.

In a recent study, sponsored by DIF Tamaulipas, onthe values of its states’ population, it was found that persons from Tamaulipas show a strong social orientation to ward traditionalism, which enforces the problems of gender inequality, family violence, child abuse, paternalism, authoritarianism and low civic participation (Moreno Álvarez, 2004).

It was found in other studies from the main cities in Tamaulipas (Cappello, 1993, 1995 y 1996) that the people from this state tend to be passive in their social relationships; in their jobs’ activities, a significant percentage tends to be undisciplined; it is frequent that they avoid making decisions and assuming personal responsibilities. A big part of the population shows a tendency towards magical thoughts, and they blame destiny or bad luck for the failure of their actions. Regarding authority, most of the population shows certain ambivalence, because on one hand, they seem to be submissive in their presence, and on the other, they express hostility when they exercise authority over their subordinates.

They show fear and uncertainty towards the process of change. Their attitude about religion is positive, but often negative concerning church authorities. They love free time, and even though they like to enjoy nature, they don’t show respect for it. In a study conducted in Tamaulipas (Cappello, 1999), the people surveyed surprisingly considered that environmental pollution and destruction of green areas in the state were the least problematic issues.

However, they showed a positive attitude towards industrialization, commerce, and education. They expressed a strong concern about social violence, drug addiction, and organized crime. In general, they grant a low value to personal health.They expose their physical well being to conducts that will surely hurt them, and consider that tobacco, alcohol, and other addictions will cause them relative harm. Preventive health care is not common in many men. Women showed more concern, particularly associated with their roles as mothers, but personally, they consider that loss of health could be fatal.

Referring to ethical universal values, their orientation tends to relativism, where the majority of the population gives them little attention. It seems they are not worried about them.

Education in values must be differenced from teaching of values. In the first case, when students are educated in values, the judgment about men and his nature is the most important thing. We refer to the topics and teaching techniques that are required for the students to be able to systematically guide their behavior with the orientations that society consider as valuable. The teaching of values is focused on the instruction of conceptual, informative, and disciplinary aspects.

With the results of the investigations about values in Tamaulipas, it is seriously considered that education with values should be oriented in a very incisive way towards the formative aspect. It must be focused on the relationship between values and behavior, contextualizing the most conspicuous problems that communities, families, and individuals face.


School, education, and values.

Education and values have been considered as an obligated relationship to school since the former doesn’t finish its job in simple transmission of knowledge, but assumes the formation of students as one of its main functions, so that they can successfully face their lives, and maturely participate in a society that will demand from them as committed citizens.

The main aspect of this formation is the learning of values, from individual to collective, which reach their maximum significancefor exercising democratic coexistence.

Concept of values

From a Humanistic perspective, the supreme value is manhood –humanity- and the basic moral foundation of human society is its preservation, development, and perfection. Respect for life would be the value related with that preservation, emanating, extending and transferring to a complex group of facts, experiences, and behaviors pertaining to life, as peace preservation, health, environment, and public safety.

While responsibility to comply norms and obligations that improve the relationships of coexistence, institutions, and jobs, respond to the value of social and material development – the whole society- the quest for a fair and equitable society – in all dimensions of human existence: social, economic, cultural and political- would lead to perfecting human beings as citizens.

The conception of aaxiological pillar, considering the human being as a moral base, lies in three basic dimensions: Respect for life; Vocation for development, and Perfection achievement- Equity and Justice- that allow how to identify the way these values are expressed in different stages of educational development of the individual and society.

The “experienciation” is not achieved with the simple systematic exposition from concepts that integrate the value as a public and specific event represented on a cognitive category. The students should be incorporated with everything involving emotions and affections, in order to experiment what the value means. Education must start from emotions provoked by specific situations when students face dilemmas that offer experiencing values in personal and social life.

Education with values presents serious challenges for the teacher in different school levels. The management of students’ sensitivity implies the comprehension of the degree of emotional and cognitive maturity in the different ages of the students.

During development, children, teenagers and youth, besides absorbing knowledge from everywhere –formal and informal education- have a growing ability to get vital experiences that come from family role models, media, friends and surrounding community, reproducing the behavior of the observed models – consciously and unconsciously- whether good or bad, and interiorizing them as part of their identity and character. Therefore, the simple exposition as a vehicle to model axiological behaviors are insufficient. There must be another way of teaching, and another way of integrating themto the students’ curriculum.

Clyde Kluckhohn (1957), regarding values, considers that the inappropriate conceptions of the relationship between normative and existential propositions come from the disproportioned vision from existing differences and similarities among them. Lepley (1959), rejecting the emphasis that tends to exist between judgment of value and judgment of facts, claims it isa mere extrinsic distinction. According to Thorndike (1932), the judgment of value refers to the consequences of factual situations; and therefore, they are from the same type. The distinction between judgment of value and judgment of facts has a classifying nature; object of the former are the relationships via-end, and the latter, cause and effect relationships.

The integration of values in a system, a major factor in the characterization of particular structures (person, family, institutions), it becomes a necessary condition for the integration of motivations in a determined motivational system, which at the same time acts as a factor of identification of personality.

Finally, integration that forms personality, insofar it confers regularity tosocial behaviors and becomes predictable; becomes a necessary condition for role expectations to be formed around the social actors in interaction. Value integration in the personality system is made by a process of internalization that transforms value in a supplementary motivation of the action. Because of this, we must complement the approach of Kluckhohm with the interpretation that Moscovici gives to this process in the Theory of Social Representations (1986).

In most of contemporary educational systems, the so called values are the ones that are included for learning. And these values are the ones considered to support the proposal of education with the values that we present here.

The program of education with values, while taken in a general way by the educational institutions,isconsidered a triple axis –Organism, Ethics, and Environment- sometimes adding a module on civics. The program here in develops special treatments designed to address typical problems such as citizen morality -civic participation-, family and child violence -, problems in the environment- pollution, destruction of natural habitat, public gardens, recreational centers, forests, rivers, and coasts-, and public health problems and prevention- diseases, body hygiene, and collective health-, and finally, aspects of social and economic change in current circumstances: employment,business, efficiency, support, science and technology, personal development and collective progress. “Experience, contextualization, and active participation are the means for an education with values”. In other words, to incorporate the values to our behavior we must live by them, feel them, and get excited with them, as an intimate and external experience.

The school’s role in promoting values

The school in the 21st century has been transformed like all other institutions that are part of our current society. It is no longer an isolated element that allowed certain isolation from society problems, so a student, calmly, under the direction of the teacher, could learn norms for the reproduction of culture, for preparation, and complying society’s demands outside of school, as well as, adapting to the conditions that family and community impose.

The current school has moved from its initial isolation to the growing demands of a society moving towards post modernism, to the scientific-technological revolution, to the empire of massmedia, to the diversity of cultures, the socio economic ending of national borders, the growing demand of new roles, the cosmopolitanism of costumes, and to the expanding markets of globalization.

The school is involved in a constant demand. It is no longer a guarantee of school education, but has become somewhat a substitution of the family’s responsibility in forming students with values. School is demanded to be a center of knowledge and acceptance of external institutions to the preceding role, like the ones dedicated to healthcare, justice, politics, environment and new values appearing from the society’s internalization processes.

As Gilbert (2001) has said,student centered education, the integrated curriculum from preschool through high school, the construction of knowledge, the heterogeneous grouping, the cooperative study groups, the school as a community, the recognition of diversity, critical thinking, are all important, but, above all these aspects, education is a process of life.

On the other hand, school must instruct students for a democratic life. Gutmann (2001) advises that all the students must be prepared to participate as politically equal citizens, in the deliberate configuration of the future of society.

To sum up, we can say that students must be instructed in critical reflection. Rollano (2004) claims that school, in education with values must form human beings able to acquire those cognitive and affective skills that, in harmony, could help them coexist with the necessary balance and understanding to integrate themas individuals who belong to society, and also as a unique human being in the world surrounding him/her. We can consider that people and the whole society are in the middle of a crisis, and that, evidently, we are suffering a serious value crisis. This causes schoolto emerge with a very important role as a rescuer.

Ten approaches to develop education with values

In the educational environment and among experts in education with values, it is recognized that they are most frequently acquired through example ratherthan through recommendations, admonitions, punishments and rewards or by mere school instruction. There are several conditions that must be fulfilled by an effective education with values. Also, we have to consider the students’ experience, their context, and the events’ familiarity that are used to reach an axiological education. Outside their direct experience, their everyday context, and unusual conditions, or outside family perceptions, all education with values will have as a result undefiled achievements.

There are no written or specific rules to develop a strategy for education with values. However, we could present, as useful suggestions, a group of approaches that the teacher needs to take into account to teach education with values.

The first approach is to consider that it is not an easy or simple task; so, we have to accept that it is a complex task, of totalizing processes, of rich and diverse situations.

The second approach is to consider that education with values responds to a conception of “integrality” (forgive the neologism). In other words, a value could not be conceptualized as a divisible structure. No one could be considered half honest, or thirty percent honest. You are honest, or you are not honest.

The third approach is the consideration that values have the property of being transversal. This is, they could be applied to a great different number of facts, situations, objects and conditions.

The fourth approach refers to multidimensionality. Values possess the characteristic that, regardless the place where they were learnt, they could be applied to different areas of social interaction. The counter-values also have this characteristic, and that’s why they are considered dangerous.

The fifth approach considers the correspondence between universal and relative as a characteristic of values. This refers to the appropriate areas of application, the same application, and adequacy, and also the interpretation in the sociocultural diversity. For example, tolerance is considered as a universal value, but is restricted by what guides it. It is evident that, even in the culture of a racist group, this cannot be tolerated because it threatens the ethical implications of the same value.

The sixth approach refers to the fact that education with values takes as a foundation the “reality as educational space”. We educate with values, not for a purely abstract instance, but taking into account the real problems that the students face. Because of this, this kind of education goes beyond the purely scholar environments, and seeks to influence the family and proximal and broader community.

The seventh approach emphasizes that education with values must consider the relationship between the students and their development, in the double conception of growth and development skills of the person, and the development of the person as an intelligent, and ethical human being.

Private and public aspects are the main topics of the eighth approach that has to be considered. We can say that education allows the development of an individual personality with an individual values’ system, it is true that the limits between private and public are so narrow, because their relationship with the community is always close, and, each individual fact transcends to public life. That’s the reason why education is interested in preparing students as citizens.

The ninth approach refers to the idea that values are products of learning, but they are influenced by the students’ particularities, their social vocations, and their preferences about knowledge. This has to be considered as a triad of components: personality, vocation, and knowledge.

The tenth approach considers personal life, social realities, and citizenship. This implies knowing who the student is (his/her social reality, existing implications in training him/her to fully exercise his citizenship). An education with values is not complete if these three components are not contemplated, because, eventually, teachers need to consider these factors.

The concept of competencies in education with values.
What are competencies?

The didactic that allows with greater certainty this special type of learning, education with values, is the establishment of competencies.

From this point of view, what could we understand as a competency? The term is a product from formative models initially used in working environments, and, later on, in the world of schooling education, under the idea that it sets an alternative to satisfy the productive requirements in the job and the demands of life.

We are searching, with this procedure, that human actions become more efficient, but at the same time, we look for defining its components based on structures, and characteristics. This takes us to find different definitions that make us wonder, according to Zavala and Arnau (2007): What are competencies good for? Which is their field of involvement? In which situations should they be applied? And also ask: Are they aptitudes or skills? In any of these aspects are there other components? Also, to make clear the difference between competency and competent acting.

Let’s see some definitions about “competence”, and “competency” that let us recognize its basic components, in semantic and structural terms.

In the working area, McClelland (1973) defined competency as “that element that really causes a superior performance in a specific job”. As we can infer,this author implied quality in the results of the work.

Lloyd McLeary (Cepeda, 2005) defines it as “the presence of characteristics, or the absence of aptitudes that make a person qualified to perform a specific task, or to assume a definite role”. As we can observe, this definition pointsto manifested conditions: the existence or absence of aptitudes that make a person qualified to perform a specific task, or to assume a different role.

The Working International Organization (2004) defines competence as “the effective capacity to successfully accomplish a job activity completely identified”. It adds up to the former definitions, the terms of effective and successful capacity.

The Ministry of the Labor and Social Affairs of the Spanish Government (1995) defines competence as: “the capacity to apply knowledge, skills and attitudes to the performance of the correspondent task, including the capacity of response to unexpected problems, autonomy, flexibility, collaboration with the professional environment, and with the job’s organization”. As we can see, this definition adds onto the explicative area of competence, in addition to “applying knowledge, skills, and attitudes to the performance of the correspondent task”. Besides, it increases the capacity of response to unexpected problems, autonomy, and flexibility. This means, that it goes beyond mere semantics to a certain evaluative approach.

In the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (2008)), ccompetence is defined as the ability to do something well, meanwhile, it also points out a difference with the word (competency) as an important ability required to perform a job. This suggests that in English, we have two words for two activities that may seem similar, but they refer to two levels of application of ability: to do something well, anything, and the required ability to perform a “task” well. This means, that rules are necessary, to perform a “task”. This second meaning is used in the definition of “competency” in the school processes, and in the external ones as well.

The Larousse Dictionary (2004) also defines competency by the application to commercial and industrial aspects, considering it as “the set of knowledge, qualities, aptitudes and aptitudes that allow to discuss, consult and decide everything concerning a task”. The definition becomes a broad explanation, and considers that the competency has a group of diverse structures whereby is defined what could be demanded in a job, implying that the knowledge could be applied, more than just theoretical.

The Organization for Cooperation and Development (OCDE, its initials in Spanish), which our country is a member, in its project, “Definition and Selection of Competencies” (2002) for the transformation of educational institutions, and educational programs, it explains competencies as “the ability to successfully accomplish the complex demands, through mobilization of psychosocial prerequisite. In this way, the results that the individual gets through his/her actions, selection or behavior according to the demands, are emphasized".

This definition is complemented with the following addition: “each competency is the combination of practical abilities, knowledge (including tacit knowledge), motivation, ethical values, attitudes, emotions, and other social and behavioral components that can be mobilized together so the action in a determined situation could be successful”. (Zavala y Arnau, 2007).

The presented definitions of competencies for educational and working environments have in common two aspects, they refer to three specific components: psychosocial properties of the person (attitudes, abilities, skills, values, etc.), qualitative orientation (success) towards a specific practice, and forms of action and performance procedures which are adequate to the performed task (efficiency and efficacy).

However, we can observe that the definitions and components attributed to “competency”, to the extent that they serve as parameters to accomplish more complex tasks, they become somewhat broader and lose certain specificity.

Actually, it is important not to forget that competency is a person’s attribute, because he/she is the receiver of the competency, the one who has to be competent. This person is the one who then acts following norms and specifications regarding the appointed task. Thus, we could say that in general terms, we could define competency as the possession of a group of abilities, knowledge, and aptitudes to develop a specific task with quality and efficiency, a specialized activity, or a required job subject to defined norms.

The aptitudes could refer to psychosocial aspects suchas attitudes, values, or skills. In educational terms, the competency implies the successful management of knowledge, aptitudes, attitudes and procedures to acquire a clearly specified learning in terms of applicability to problems, and real situations, or the practical accomplishment of the topics in a given curriculum.

When the subject to be learned -in this case, values- specifies competencies that are related with very abstract aspects, the teaching procedure gains more relevance, because it is the fundamental constitution, which should have the ability to facilitate the most generalization of what was learned. Thus, the technique of "scenarios" has been suggested.

Learning competencies through scenarios.

As we have previously mentioned, the challenge of educating with values not only implies the adoption of a theoretical and evaluative approach, but also, implies the didactic strategies from which is intended to form the students.

In this sense, several authors have manifested the suitability of “scenarios” as a teaching strategy to educate with values, due to its versatility, emulation of real situations close to the students’ lives; high motivational level that stimulates sensitivity, and the ability to propitiate the students’ engagement. (Brady, 2011; Noguera et al., 2000)

Therefore, a scenario connotes the use of a space where an action takes place, and an interaction of characters, representing a group of events, and physical and abstract components that grant meaning and certain limits to the events that happen within it, everything joined by a central argument.

Likewise, in its simplest expression, scenarios require from the performance of competencies that mobilize a group of knowledge, procedures and values, for decision making, and resolution of problematic situations that require value’s judgment and ethical reasoning.

It is worth noting that regarding the attitudinal component of competencies, the solutions to said problems, not only promote learning of a specific value, but also present an interrelationship between values due to the complex web of factors, situations, conditions, people, and groups of various interests that are conflicted in each scenario’s resolution.

Consequently, scenarios provide the participants with numerous resources to derive senses and meanings that allow them to understand the values and their importance in human and collective life, thanks to the immersion of mnemonic processes of reconstruction, recollection, evoking, and recognition of values, that facilitate their learning and transference to wider daily lifecontexts (Cappello, 2006).

Building upon the former principles, scenarios propose learning situations according to the students’ social, cognitive and moral level of development, being pre-school level the simplest and superior levels more complex.

Therefore, the topics that are brought up through scenarios have the characteristic of integrating arguments obtained from families’, schools’ and communities’ daily life’s experience.

Finally, it is convenient to point out that the teachers could introduce variations, changes or adjustments in the application of scenarios, depending on the schools’ conditions, the characteristics ofthe students and the group, the degree of participation of their parents, and the community context, as well as, the formation necessities established in the course syllabus. (Cappello, 2006).

Teaching competencies for the teachers when educating with values.

Likewise students, we believe that who intends educating with values should master a number of competencies. This becomes particularly relevant, because the subject that the students should learn does not refer to material aspects or accessible knowledge that could be easily transmitted through an instructional methodology. The teacher must have certain competencies to allow him/her educate with values effectively.

Which competencies are the ones the teacher must have when educating with values? These, according to various authors (García y Puig, 2007:8), are a group of personal and professional attributes whose level of knowledge is improvable. Educating with values presents certain paradox to the teacher. Whoever he/she is and which ever educational level he/she has, as a human being and a citizen, he/she should be prepared for educating with values.

New ways of teaching advocate not for a selective orientation without foundations, but a mostly inclusive ways of teaching, assuringa trueequity of opportunities for everybody. This doesn’t mean stopping the efforts of the students in their academic responsibilities, but to guiding education to a closer teaching that allows teaching adaptation to the students’ characteristics.

This leads us to annul, in the educational community, prejudices against gender, culture, and socioeconomic class. Within the many competencies that the teacher must possess, there will always be seven basic competencies that the teacher must have when educating with values:

  • 1. To have a conscience that it is required a firm and broad education with values as a parallel to an educational revolution.
  • 2. To be himself/herself.
  • 3. To be able to recognize others.
  • 4. To facilitate dialogue.
  • 5. To regulate participation.
  • 6. To work in teams.
  • 7. To contribute to improve the school.

It is important for teachers have in mind that learning through competencies is a clear advance in teaching. However, we must understand that its application requires from a careful analysis, not only of what must be learned, but also, about its nature and components. In as much aswe get closer to topics that involve aspects with psychological and subjective dimensions, we will need a broader teaching demand, and the construction of learning based on more complex competencies. Definitely, when educating with values, success will be related to the level of competencies that the teachers have to form students in the complex world of values.

Evaluation of civic and ethical competencies: principles and instruments.

How do we evaluate the civic and ethical competencies that students learn and develop from the participation in educational processes when educating with values through scenarios?

Without a doubt, answering this question implies, on one hand, to have the characteristics of competencies’ assessment completely clear, and, on the other, to dispose of certain domain of the instruments that can be used to teach it.

In this sense, the strategy of education with values presented here assumes six key principles about the characteristics of evaluation of civic and ethical competencies, considering the orientation that are provided by the current official educational programs in our country, and supported by specialized literature. (Bolívar, 1998; San Martí, 2007; Zabala y Arnau, 2007).

1. Evaluating competencies inside problematic situations.

Learning civic and ethical competencies must be assessed byplacing the students in scenarios which show problematic situations more or less similar to those they can face in real life, that force them to analyze value choices, to perform ethical reasoning, and make decisions about the behavioral schemes more appropriate to solve those situations. That is, it is required to make a contextualized assessment from the experience of attitudes and values.

2. Evaluating competencies from the expected learning outcomes.

Each scenario establishes a group of expected learning outcomes and tasks constituting in the referents that the teachers could use to determine appropriate products and activities to obtain evidence, as well as the types of instruments and indicators of achievement. The foregoing, with the objective of aligning the teaching–learning–evaluating processes, performed in each scenario.

3. Evaluating competencies clearly defining the assessment activities.

This means that the teachers must define the products or evidences that they consider the most appropriate to observe the learning achieved by the students from their performance in each scenario. The assessment activities of competencies could be diverse, depending of the educational level, including written and graphic productions, collective projects, scripts, documentary investigations, records and attitude schemes of students, among others, that could be compiled in portfolios, or activity notebooks on an individual, team, or group level.

4. Evaluating competencies according to the type of knowledge.

Competencies consist of conceptual, procedural and attitudinal knowledge. Therefore, the teachers must specify the type and degree of knowledge they expect studentsto obtain from each of them. Considering that the manner each component learned is different, the teacher must evaluate them through activities and specific instruments, that allow observation and evaluation in the most integrated way possible, that informs of the knowledge students were capable of learning and mobilize in a specific scenario, or context where the performance of competencies are realized.

5. Evaluating competencies through instruments of formative and alternative assessment.

First of all, the assessment of competencies must be a formative evaluation that guides students in their process of learning and gradual development of certain competencies. Onthe other hand, it must be an alternative evaluation, understood as a compilation of evidences on how students process and complete real tasks in a given topic, like in the case of scenarios.

Unlike traditional assessment, alternative assessment allows teachers to perform four important evaluation activities: 1.To inform students of competencies to be evaluated.2. To document the students’ progress at a certain time, instead of comparing them with others. 3. To obtain information to adopt decisions on how to enablea learning environment that contributes in a greater manner developing competencies, attitudes and values, instead of punishing the civic, ethical and moral behavior of students. 4. To use instruments with explicit indicators of achievement and also share them with students, teachers, and parents.

Besides, competencies and values assessment must be placed in agreement with the system of values of the school and social communities in which students participate, trying to observe the consequences in the communities, depending on the way that values are applied and practiced.

6. Evaluating competencies implies assuming that learning and development are different in each student.

This requires understanding that students are not human beings that passively receive the environmental influences just like that; on the contrary, they are social agents that actively construct knowledge, attitudes, and values that are considered important to orientate their behavior.

This means that, at present, students build up their personal biographies beyond the institutionalized rules, through complex processes that allow them to set their own system of values, including values, norms, and roles that are offered by family, school, community, and media. Evidently, this process of construction varies depending on the different ages; on the first years it is focused on habits and norms, and in the teenage years it is based on the acquisition of a more complex ethical and moral reasoning.

Instruments to evaluate by competencies

According to Lopez and Hinojosa (2001), the evaluation of competencies is commonly made through two types of instruments of alternative assessment: observation techniques, and performance evaluation techniques. In our case teachers could perform the evaluation of the established competencies in the scenarios mainly through three observation instruments: comparison list, attitude scale, and rubric.

Here after, are presented, in an orientated mode, definitions, examples and general recommendations, to give some general guidance about the instruments that teachers could use to evaluate students’ competencies in each scenario implemented in class.

Check list

It consists of a list or words, phrases or sentences that, as indicators, allow the teacher to identify expected behaviors in the students’ performance in certain areas.

Such indicators must be based on knowledge, procedures, and attitudes that teachers intend to evaluate in the scenario, and must be written on the record sheet judgment, that will allow the assessment of the observed competencies. The phrases in the checklist must specify the sequence of indicators is considered fundamental for the assessment judgment. In front of each phrase,word or sentence, two value columns are included – Yes/No; Achieved/Not Achieved; Competent/Not Competent; etc – in which the observer will take note of everything addressed there, performed or not, by the observed student or group.

Example of check list; group observation

Recommendations to elaborate a checklist:

  • To identify each knowledge and behavior to be observed and make a list of them.
  • To organize the behaviors in the sequence that they are expected to occur.
  • To have a simple procedure to check what was observed.

Scale of assessment

Even though it is similar to the check list, the appreciation scale allows to detect the extent an individual shows each evaluated trait, from its absence or scarcity to the maximum possibility or certain attitude or behavior through a graphical, categorical, or numerical scale, where grading is polytomous. In other words,it is important that the instrument has a separate scale for each trait, attitude, or behavior that will be evaluated.

Example scale of assessment

Recommendations for elaborating a scale of assessment:

  • To determine the trait to be evaluated.
  • To define the trait.
  • To elaborate indicators – clearly observable – from the elaborated definition.
  • To specify the order or sequence of the indicators (if applicable).
  • To validate the logical relationship between the definition of the trait and the elaborated indicators through an expert’s judgments (content validation).
  • To select the type of scale to evaluate each indicator. The appreciation scales must be polytomous, rather numerical, categorical, or graphical.
  • To diagram the instrument.


The rubric is an evaluation instrument based on a criteria scale and performance levels that allow determining the quality of students’ performance on specific tasks.

Regarding format or design, the rubric is characterized by three key elements that are placed on the left side; performance levels, in the upper side, and values or scores by level of performance in each evaluated criteria.

It is important to point out that rubric is an evaluation instrument designed among teachers and students, where in a negotiated and explicit manner, are established criteria and levels of performance that will be useful to evaluate the success of students in each criterion.

Example of rubric, bulletin board.

Recommendations for elaborating a rubric:

  • To select the objectives supporting the task or job that has to be completed.
  • To identify all the possible criteria to represent the behaviors or performances expected from the students while completing the task.
  • To organize criteria by levels of effectiveness.
  • To assign a numeric value according to the level of performance.
  • Each level must have behaviors or performance expected from the students, described.
  • Students should know in anticipation the evaluation criteria. Self-assessment using the rubric is recommended to the student.


The presented strategy for education with values, it is supported by the approach based on competencies from the subject of Civic and Ethical Formation, and it is structured in three different sections. In the first one, the scenarios curricular organization is explained for the formation of civic and ethical competencies; in the second section, the teaching strategy suggested for working in the scenarios in the classroom, is presented. Finally, the topics’ organization of scenarios is desribed, according to the purposes and contents of this topic.

Curricular organization of scenarios for the formation of competencies and values.

Scenarios are organized according to two different criteria.

Organization criteria 1: Gradual development of the competency

Scenarios are organized according to the criteria of the gradual development of the civic and ethical competencies, which are established in the Civic and Ethical Formation subject (SEP, 2009).

The competencies by the Curriculum in Secondary Education are:

Competencies for lifelong learning : They involve the ability to learn , accept and manage their own learning throughout his life , joining the writing and mathematical literacy , and to mobilize the various cultural, scientific and technological knowledge to understand reality . Competences for information management : They are related to the search for, evaluation and systematization of information; thinking, think , argue and express critical judgments ; analyze, synthesize and use information ; the knowledge and use of different logics of construction of knowledge in various disciplines and in different cultural areas.

Competencies for handling situations : Those linked with the ability to organize and design life projects, considering various aspects such as social , cultural, environmental , economic, academic and affective , and take initiative to carry them out ; manage time ; promote and address changes that occur; make decisions and take the consequences; dealing with risk and uncertainty; pose and to completing procedures or alternatives for solving problems, and handle failure and disappointment.

Competencies for coexistence : They involve relate harmoniously with others and with nature; communicate effectively; teamwork; take agreements and negotiate with others; grow with others; harmonically manage personal and emotional relationships ; develop personal identity, and recognize and value the elements of ethnic , cultural and linguistic diversity that characterizes our country.

Competencies for life in society: They refer to the ability to decide and act with critical judgment against the values ​​and social and cultural norms ; proceed in favor of democracy , peace , respect for legality and human rights ; participate considering ways to work in society , governments and businesses, individual or collective ; participate taking into account the social implications of the use of technology; act with respect to the cultural diversity; combat discrimination and racism , and demonstrate an awareness of belonging to their culture, their country and the world.

Organization criteria 2. Values’ selection according to the Civic and Ethical Formation.

Scenarios promote the formation of students in the established values in the Civic and Ethical Formation: respect to human dignity, justice, freedom, equality, solidarity, responsibility, tolerance, honesty, appreciation and respect to natural and cultural diversity (SEP, 2009).

According to the Axiological Model from Integral Education proposed by Gervilla (2000), these values will be part of a greater group of values (with their respective counter values), classified from five dimensions of the person, as bodily values, intellectual affective, individual, esthetic, moral, social, instrumental-economic, and religious (see Seijo, 2009). According to this classification, we can understand, for example, that freedom is an individual and freeing value, meanwhile tolerance and justice are cosindered as moral values.

Values Categorization based on the Axiological Model from Integral Education of Gervilla(2000)

Teaching structure of scenarios

The didactic structure of the scenarios used for the formation of competencies, civic and ethical values is based on key elements concentrated on Scenarios by Competencies Table, expecting that these could guide and facilitate its application to the teachers of the corresponding grades and blocks. This structure is now presented.

Description of scenario

It describes in general terms the group of topics and activities that students should complete through the scenario, and it is useful, therefore, to guide the teacher’s job.


It specifies the name of the field corresponding with the scenario.


It details the main and related competencies, whose acquisition is promoted through the scenario.

Expected learning

Enlists the expected learning from the scenario, associated to the expected learning of the field.


Enlists the values in which the scenario is focused on.


It consists in dilemmatic situations that students must actively solve, and with the help of teachers, relatives or community members, and who facilitate the construction of their own and shared meaningful learning about certain values. In other words, scenarios consist in problematic situations about personal and social life, in which students have to make decisions involving an ethical position, or a value judgment, through the development and application of civic and ethical specific competencies.

Teaching strategy

The teaching strategy offers a detailed sequence of the initial, developing and closing activities, that, as a suggestion, the teacher could use to implement the scenario in the classroom, including more activities for the practice of competencies in scenarios in school life, and in everyday life of students. The activities are designed to facilitate the evaluation of the conceptual, procedural, and attitud in all learning expected from them, implied ineach scenario. It is important to remember that these activities could be adjusted, according to the teacher’s experience, the contextual conditions and situations of the school and the formative needs of the classroom, with the aim that the scenario be sufficiently flexible for the effective teaching of values.

The teaching strategy of scenario in terms of beginning, developing and closingis designed to be implemented in the classroom lasting approximately 45 minutes; however, the school activities or everyday activities must be completed and checked in later sessions of the same subject of Civic and Ethical Formation, or in other subjects, through transversal job.


The evaluation of civic and ethical competencies learning is made in a formative way through the compilation of evidences related to activities and products such as:

  • The individual participation of students in the starting activities and the developing of the scenario.

  • The production of written exercises derived from the closing exercises of the scenario, both individual and team activities.

  • Products, activities, and individual or collective products established in the scenarios applying the civic and ethical competencies in school or everyday life of students. These products must be evaluated through rubrics or checklists designed by the teacher according to the indicators of performance, or performance criteria depending on their school grade and individual development. Through these rubrics, or checklists, the teacher will be able to determine the necessary concepts, procedures, and values to evaluate the civic and ethical competencies in each scenario.

  • For the follow up and control of group and individual evaluations, the teacher could use the evidence portfolio of each student, and could have a class portfolio, where the teacher gathers the products generated from team and group activities.
Topic organization of scenarios

Scenarios of education with values pretend to form students in the competencies for life, ethical behavior, and responsible citizenship. To fulfill this, the proposed scenarios have topics related with healthcare, accidents prevention, exercise of freedom through responsible decision making, organization and cooperation to complete an activity, protection of public and natural resources, dialogue to face conflict resolution, solidarity, and participation in natural disasters, rights and obligations or children, and youngsters, and democracy as an exercise to reach agreements for welfare.

These topics are adapted to the purposes and contents established in the subject of Civic and Ethical Formation, and they were chosen with the purpose to facilitate the implementation of scenarios in a vinculated and complementary way to the activities of the subject (SEP, 2009). In this sense, it is necessary to point out that for following the model of education with values, the teacher has the freedom to apply scenarios in a flexible manner, adapting, or creating formative activities or procedures different to the ones presented in the section of Teaching Strategy, considering the characteristics of the group, the conditions or the classroom, the timing, and the material resources of the students, and school, among other conditions.

A variety of possibilities is suggested in each scenario, from these, the teachers could choose those ones that could be adapted to the students’ necessities, and interests, with the objective of fulfilling the expected learning of students.

Generally speaking, the scenarios for education with values intendto train secondary students in life skills, ethical behavior and responsible citizenship. To do so, the scenarios proposed for each grade revolve arround topics such as genre equity, life projects, motivation to reach preestablished goals, values in every day life, decision making, internet harrassment, relations based in trust and communication, crime prevention and victim support programs, social pressure, importance for nutrition in life and health, interpersonal relations, dialogue as the way to solve problems, human rights, individuals’ rights and obligations, pollution and global warming.

To do this, Competencies Scenario Table to offer teachers a quick and comprehensive overview of the training fields, themes, values and expected learning for the gradual work of a certain competence in secondary education.

Evaluation of Learning

In secondary education, evaluation is a learning process for obtaining evidence and providing feedback on students’ learning achievements throughout their training.Therefore, it is an integral part of teaching and learning "to provide the necessary information about the balanced development of knowledge, skills, values and attitudes in students, in order to ensure the formative work of this subject" (Program Civic and Ethics, 2006: 25).

With this approach, it is suggested to consider students’ daily performance and attitudes such as responsibility, commitment, collaboration, among others. Also, that the different activities allow them to reflect and make decisions about the type of strategies and resources needed to strengthen students’ basic skills for the development of complex learning, and to promote self-evaluation in order to identify strengths and areas of opportunity to establish commitment to their own learning.

With the above, the evaluation will be consistent with the competencies approach, because "it will contribute to students’ personal development and will strengthen their abilities for self-knowledge and self-regulation for independent study and lifelong learning" (Program Civics and Ethics, 2006: 26).

  • Topics:

    Different ways of relating.

    Gender equity.

  • Competencies:

    To foster permanent learning.

  • Values:

    Equity, Respect, Equality, Tolerance.

  • Learning outcome:

    To understand that men and women share rights and obligations equally, and deserve to be treated with equity and respect.

  • Field: I

  • Topic: 1/1.3, 2/2.3

Scenario 1

Basketball training


The physical education class was about to start and all the young men were taking off their uniforms and putting on their sports clothes. Suddenly, the girls passed by fooling around among them.

Look, the “chicks” are coming! A thin and tall boy said while he was pointing at the jolly group.

Get out of here! Get out!Get out! All of them started yelling, following the leader’s voice.

The girls walked away immediately, and found a place to sit down far away from the boys.

Who are you referring to, Sebastian, your girl classmates, maybe?The professor asked Sebastian very seriously while he was pointing out the place where the girls were sitting.

Well, of course I am talking about them, Professor. Don’t tell me that they are going to play with us again? It is not fair! We feel so girly, when women are included and play in our team!

  • Purpose:

    To recognize areas of action defined for men and women, and the application of gender equity in a democratic way of life.

Please teacher, don’t do that to us! They are a complete group of losers!One of the boys said, hiding himself behind the rest of the group.

The teacher looked at them firmly, and said: Is it a fact that you aresplendid basketball players? C’mon! Ok, tell me who are the ones that don´t want girls in your team?” The teacher asked, with a smirk.

The first to answer was Sebastian. Fourteen hands were raised at the same time, right after him.

So most of you don’t agree to share the basketball court with “the chicks”?

Everyone laughed out loud amused when they heard that expression coming out from their very serious professor’s mouth. It was a complete new feeling among them and their teacher. So then everyone started to say all kind of expressions or sayings against women, assuming an approving attitude from the teacher -“Girls can’t play well! “Girls can’t beat us!” “Girls don’t understand a thing about sports!” “Girls are weak!…”

We don’t want them at all! Sebastian shouted euphorically.

Suddenly, a girl’s voice cried out: Sebastian! Sebastian! Your brother has just fallen down on the stairs”. Juliet took him in her arms to the medical office and the doctor asked you to call your mother. He wants her to come and pick him up!”.

Sebastian looked around desperately and said: “Hey, does anybody have a cell phone? The public school telephone broke down yesterday because of the storm!”.

Isabel, one of the girls, luckily had a cell phone, and she thought about giving him a lesson lending him her cell phone. She addressed the other girls rapidly and asked them: “What should I do? Should I lend it to him? You know the way he always treats us, and the things he says about us”.

Sebastian, totally concerned, looked at the group of girls, but they were all quiet as a stone.

“I have to call my sister! He cried out, knowing he had the eyes of his classmates on him. My mom is at work now! She cannot get out to come here...”

All the boys looked at each other … all the girls remained in silence…

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Written conclusions about what gender equity is.

    Ability to defend personal points of view.

    Collaborative work among men and women.

  • Linking:


Teaching Strategy


  • In teams, read the Scenario “At the basketball training”. Even out each team with an equal number of men and women.


  • Ask students to reflect within their teams on the following questions:

    Currently, what is the role of women in society?

    What is discrimination? Have you experienced it?

    How did the story end? What do you think the boys did? What do you think the girls did?

    What do you think the professor spoke about with the students after the incident?

    What lesson could the group learn with the incident?

    How do you considere women compared to men?

    Is there a thing that women can’t do because of their gender compared to men? Mention it.

  • Share the answers given within groups with the rest of the class.


  • Discus this question: Who are considered the most important in our society, men or women? Explain your answer
  • The professor will be the moderator of the discussion. Any conclusion should be registered in the workbook.
  • Each group will read its conclusions.

Complementary activities

  • Look for a TV or radio program, or an Internet video containing a gender equity conflict, then save it and show it to the class.
  • Analyze it carefully, and then identify the problems within.
  • Propose among the group all possible solutions to the identified problem. Write them on the board, and establish conclusions.
  • Topics:

    Life projects.

    Setting motivation to accomplish

    established goals.

  • Competencies:

    To foster permanent learning.

  • Values:

    Courage, Perseverance, Friendship, Love.

  • Learning outcome:

    Establishes goals and aspirations in life, and identifies the motivation needed to accomplish them.

  • Field: I

  • Topic: 1

Scenario 2

The burned child


Some time ago, an altruistic teacher used to visit the children from a big hospital in Mexico City. Her job there was to help them with their homework, so they were not left behind in class when they returned to school.

One day, the teacher received an ordinary call from a school. They asked her to go to visit this particular patient. She asked the name of the boy, the name of the hospital and the room number. The person on the other side of the phone was the teacher of the patient. She instructed: We are learning nouns and adverbs in class now. I’d appreciateit if you help him with his homework, please. I don’t want him to be left behind from the rest of the class.

It was until she was at the hospital when she noticed that the child’s room was located in the Burn Care Unit. She felt at that moment that maybe she was not qualified at all for that job. She was also trembling nervously for the impression that awaited her at the other side of the door.

Before she got the access to that area, she was asked to wear a sterilized gown and cap to prevent the risk of possible infections to patients. They also asked her not to touch the boy or the bed. She could get close to him as long as she wore that mask needed in that confined area.

  • Purpose:

    To analyze the situations that let us establish the motivation needed to achieve a specific goal.

After she ended the sterilization process of cleaning arms and hands, and wearing those special clothes, she breathed deeply and entered the room. The little one, horribly burned, was suffering a lot. The teacher felt so awkward, and didn’t know what to say, but now it was too late to turn back and leave the place and the child.

When she could articulate a word she finally said: “Hello, I am the teacher that attends the hospital, and your school teacher asked me to help you with nouns and adverbs.”

When the session finished, she felt like it hadn’t been her best.

When she got back the next morning one of the nurses from the “burned people area” asked the teacher: What did you do with that kid?

The teacher started to think promptly on a vast list of apologies and excuses, but the nurse interrupted her and said:

Don’t misunderstand this. We were extremely worried about him, but after your visit his attitude and countenance changed radically. Now he’s fighting back, and the treatment is working

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Individual conclusions about the scenario.

    Rubrics for student’s life expectations.

  • Linking:

    Spanish, Guidance and Tutoring.

Teaching strategy


  • To explore the students’ previous knowledge with the help of the following questions:

    What is the higher motivation in your life?

    How do you see yourself five years from now?


  • Ask students to read the scenario “The burned child”. Make comments about the ideas generated after the reading. Consider the following questions:

    What was the sign that the burned child awaited to fight for his life?

    What was the child’s reaction towards the teacher’s visit?

    What thing did the teacher do to motivate the child?

    What would have happened if the teacher didn’t visit him that day?

    What would you do if you were in the same condition as the child of the story?

  • Write down a summary of the students’ answers on the board.
  • Ask students to identify and highlight the positive words in the text that can help them cope with difficult situations.


  • Students will answer the following questions individually:

    Have you planned any short, middle or long term life projects? Mention them, and tell what you will do to achieve them?

  • Make your students register their answers in the workbook.
  • Ask your students to share their life expectations and their plans to achieve them in the near future.
  • Topics:

    Relationships based on confidence and communication.

    Programs to prevent crime and to guarantee witnesses follow-up.

  • Competencies:

    To foster information management.

  • Values:

    Honesty, Respect.

  • Learning outcome:

    Recognizes risky situations for self and others.

    Learns about the State Programs designed to prevent crime and help their victims.

  • Block: IV

  • Topics: 1, 2 y 3

Scenario 3

Where is it?


It was a quite calm morning; everything was going as usual in classroom “A” of the 1st grade in middle school. Some students were making jokes; some others were talking about trending topics while Jorge was collecting the money to photocopy the math exercises asked by their teacher. Then the bell rang indicating them to move to the GYM for the next class that was physical education. Everyone put away the books immediately and ran to the GYM trying to avoid delays.

Once they were in class, they started doing some warming up exercises. After that, the boys formed teams to start the soccer training because the annual tournament was coming up. The girls, meanwhile, practiced their cheerleading routine.

Daniela asked the teacher to let her go to the classroom to grab the disc needed for the routine because she had forgotten it there. Carlos asked for permission to leave the class too because the team’s uniforms were left in the classroom.

When the class finished everyone got back to the classroom to grab their books, and move to the Science Teacher’s conference. At some point of that course George would visit the library to ask the librarian to photocopy the math exercises for the class.

But he had a huge surprise when he found his backpack opened. He tried desperately to find the bag where the list and the money of their classmates were, but all his attempts were in vain...

  • Purpose:

    To make adolescents become aware of the importance of promoting actions to reinforce social and public security based on the respect to others and the laws that rule us.

Teaching strategy


  • To explore the students’ previous knowledge with the help of the following questions:

    What can you say about the term “third-party property”?

    How can you explain the term “trust others”?


  • To ask a student to read in teams the scenario “where is it”. Then ask them to make a chronological chart about what happened during the morning in the reading and write it on the board.
  • Lead the following questions to make them reflect on what had happened:

    What is the main problem in the story?

    What could Jorge have experienced when he found his backpack open?

    What would have been your reaction if you were in Jorge’s situation?

    Who should interfere to solve this conflict?

    Which actions should be taken to punish the culprit?

  • After having done everything, teams must make up an end to the story.


  • Once the teams make the ending, ask them to make a script to do a role play about the story.
  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Elaborate alternate endings for the story.

    The role-play script.

    Team’s written reflections of the story.

  • Linking:

    Arts, Spanish.

  • At the end of the role-play, decide together with the class for the best ending for the story.

Complementary Activities

  • Invite some professionals in public security to give a message to students and their families about the importance of taking preventive actions against security issues. They can also give advice and suggestions to plan security actions for the school and the community.
  • Topics:

    Social Networks.

    Cyber- bullying.

  • Competencies:

    To foster information management.

  • Values:

    Respect, Mental and physical integrity..

  • Learning outcomes:

    To reflects on the interpersonal relationships set in middle school based on the values of respect, equity, solidarity and tolerance.

    To recognize the importance to look after the mental and physical integrity in oneself and others.

  • Fields: I , II
  • Topics: 1, 2 y 3

Scenario 4

Social networks and bullying


Margarita was curious about what her older brothers Juan and Pedro were doing at the computer. They laughed from time to time, and then they typed something, and laughed again.

Her brothers responded to a call from a friend inviting them to go outside and play. They left the room immediately, leaving the computer on, and it was at that moment when Margarita got close to it, and could see a long chain of messages from a group of boys from the school who shared the joke played to a younger boy. They talked about how they pushed him, threw his books down, and called him names. They mentioned that they laughed at him, and made fun every time he claimed to be left alone. In addition to the messages, they added photos and videos showing when they teased him, causing tears and fear on the younger boy’s face.

The next day, when Margarita came to school she wasted no time, and told her friends what she had seen in her brother’s computer. One of her friends said exactly the same thing. She had seen those messages too, and related them to those students in classroom “B”.

Margarita couldn’t understand why no one had told the hall monitor about this situation. Her friends replied, explaining the countless problems they could have if they complained. It would be possible that the joke and bullying towards the kid would increase. They also confessed that similar things happened in different classrooms.

  • Purpose:

    To identify the boundaries of our actions to prevent third-party offenses. Recognize the core of this problem: ignorance, prejudice, selfishness and more lack of loving actions.

Margarita reflected on the wrong side of those kinds of messages in the internet. A friend added that worse things could be found there. Margarita got shocked about it, and wondered if there would be something she could do to prevent those kinds of acts at school

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Answers from reflection questions

    Campaign against the wrong usage of the social networks.

    Flyers, cartels, banners elaborated by the students.

    Group reflections and conclusions.

  • Linking:

    Spanish, Geography of México and the world.

Teaching strategy


  • To activate students’ previous knowledge implementing the brainstorming technique applied to Scenario 4. Use the following questions as help:

    Have you ever used the social networks? What for?

    Do you consider social networks as a benefit for society? Can you mention them?


  • To read the scenario along with your students and make teams. Ask them to answer the following questions:

    What can we do to stop bullying against the unprotected classmates?

    What can students do to eradicate the e-messages with aggressions, mockery, and contempt?

    What do your classmates think about harassment and aggressions to the unprotected classmates?

    What do you think about the behavior of Margarita’s brothers?

    What should Margarita do now that she knows about the messages her brothers send to that student that is constantly bullied at school?

    What do you think about the attitude of Margarita’s friends?

    Which are the values needed to be taught at school to eradicate the cyber-bullying mentioned in the Scenario?


  • Organize students to make a campaign about the correct usage of the social networks. They should design posters, flyers and banners, to promote this at school.
  • Share with your students ideas to guarantee the emotional integrity of those who use the social networks in a wrong way, it means against themselves, and their classmates.
  • Elaborate suggestions for the victims of cyber-bullying.

Complementary activities

  • Invite your students to read the following news extracts and analyze the problems found together.

    He committed suicide after cyber-bullying in social networks

    Allem Halkic, a teenager of 17, took his own life in 2009, after he experienced cyberbullying* in an specific social network. The jury who trialed this case in 2011, solved that his death was caused by an act of violence.

    (Extract from “The Sidney Morning Herald”)

    A 10 year-old girl created a trendy Facebook group with the purpose of humiliating a classmate

    Romina Perrone, a 10 year-old student suffered because a classmate created a Facebook group to show hate and anger against her. This facebook group reached more than five thousand fans, and despite Romina’s mother failed efforts, Facebook didn’t ban it.

    (Extract from Cyber-bullying,

    They laughed “a little bit” until they provoked suicide

    Ryan committed suicide in 2003, after he suffered of psychological aggression. After years of suffering several kinds of harassment, a “friend” of him spread the rumor at school via an online, confessing the homosexuality of his friend. A girl he was dating fooled him in the internet. She misled her love just to humiliate him face to face later. She also distributed the private messages when she showed him fake interest. It was more than he could bear.

    This case gave the leading to get the approval of the Harassment Prevention Law in the North American State of Vermont seven months after Ryan’s death.

    (The Ryan Halligan case, extracted by the internet website created in memory of him)

Bullying (english word) refers to the continuous and deliberated physical and psychological abuse applied against a child by others who treat him viciously with the objective of subjecting ,and frightening him or her to obtain something in favor of his/her molesters, or even just to satisfy the necessity of aggression or destruction. Bullying implies a continuous repetition of the jokes and aggressions provoking the social exclusion of the victim.

Extract taken from Cyber-bullying against young kids,

  • Ask students to answer the following questions about the news extracts:

    Which case impacted you the most and why?

    Do you know anybody who had experienced cyber-bullying? Which actions were taken?

    What would you do if you come across a page or a facebook account created to harm your image?

    In your opinion, what was the reason of Ryan’s death? Was there anything to do to avoid his death?

  • Analyze the student’s answers.Emphasize the benefits of the social networks, but also emphasize the consequences of their wrong usage.
  • Topics:

    Values within daily life.

    Decision making.

  • Competencies:

    To foster situations management.

  • Values:

    Honesty, Respect.

  • Learning outcomes:

    Identifies the ethical values needed to set interpersonal relationships based on respect and honesty.

  • Blocks: I / II
  • Topics: 2 /N 3

Scenario 5

The cellphone


Roberto was walking through the school hall. He was actually walking too fast. He was just coming out of the restrooms, and looked in all directions. He was looking for someone but he didn’t know exactly who.

He felt excited. He could hardly believe it! It was the cell phone he had always wanted, one of the newest ones, and he had come across it!

It was a coincidence that the day before he had just asked his father for a new cell phone. He had even thought about negotiating it in exchange of his good grades in the current school year. But now, with the device in his hands, every thought was pointless. Although he couldn’t forget his father staring and him and saying: “I won’t be in need to reward you. If you get good grades at school, life will do it”.

He thought about his father’s response and he didn’t like it at all. He had even thought that his father was unfair with him. Roberto was a good student and a responsible one too. He always did his homework in a good mood, and completed his chores on time. So, why couldn’t he get what he had always wanted as a reward? Instead of that he remembered his father’s words telling him: “Roberto, you must always do the right thing, and life will reward you, never forget it son!”.

  • Purpose:

    To encourage students to practice the value of honesty within its different life dimensions such as moral, political, social and family; and participate deliberately and constructively in a social gathering, becoming a better person.

How could he forget it, when his father would always remind him that practicing values make you strong? Finding that uncared-for treasure made him recall his father’s lessons.

He continued walking as if he was in a hurry. He held the cell phone tightly in his hands. When he saw it all uncared-for at the sink he first thought that somebody had left it there by accident, but then he realized that nobody was there at that moment, so he didn’t hesitate, he took it and walked out of the room.

He wasted no time reflecting on what his father would have done in a situation like that, he already knew the answer to that.

While he was walking down the hall he tried to guess by people’s gestures. Any sign of concern, as if they had lost a belonging, which he had found and now rested in his hands.

For a moment Roberto stayed still in front of the exit. He didn’t know what to do, the temptation of keeping it was heavy but on the other hand, his father’s words restrained him.

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Describing the scenario’s alternate endings.

    Written conclusions of the questions asked.

    Role-play of the situations suggested by the students.

  • Linking:

    Spanish, Arts.

Didactic strategy


  • Activate students’ prior knowledge with the help of the following questions:

    What should you do if you find a lost object?

    Do you think it is right to keep other people’s belongings after you come across them?


  • Organize teams to read the scenario “The cell phone”.
  • Share opinions with the class. Answer the following questions as a guide:

    What did Roberto do? Do you think he kept it or handed it to the principal?

    What would you do in a similar situation like that? Why would you make such decision?

    If you came home with a new cell phone, how would your parents react?

    How do you feel when you lose something? What do you expect from the person who finds it?

    Have you ever experienced a situation like that? How did you solve it? How did you feel?

  • Once the students finish the analysis of the story, every team will write an ending to the scenario.


  • Encourage a group reflection about the answers given by the students.
  • Write on the board the most significant conclusions of the session.

Complementary activities

  • Watch and analyze the short films “The lost ball”, “The music store”, “The street” or any other video proposed by the Foundation “A better life”. You can find these on the Internet in this webpage:
  • Discuss with your students about the attitudes required in these situations:

    Would you do the same thing? What would you change?

    Would it be possible for the kid’s attitude to change in the short film “The music store”?

    ¿Have you ever experienced situations like the ones presented on the short films?

    Would it be possible for the kid’s attitude to change in the short film “The music store”?

    What did you learn through these videos?

  • Discuss together about other students’ experiences, and their reactions.
  • Ask your students to act out a problem from the last point.
  • Topics:

    Social pressure.

    Relevance of nutrition and health.

  • Competencies:

    To foster situations management.

  • Values:

    Respect for oneself.

  • Learning outcomes:

    Identifies situations that affect our health..

    Researches about the most common health problems in adolescence, and give solutions.

  • Field: I

  • Topic: 1.1

Scenario 6



February was about to start and the girls were anxious to do the gown’s shopping for the St. Valentine’s ball. Time was ticking and the event was just around the corner, so they decided to go shopping. Next Saturday they were all at the dressing room in one of the fashion shops. They were trying lots of dresses, and shouting from door to door.

“Did it fit, Elisa? I could barely zip it. These sizes are wrong, I think”, said Carla. Lili replied from another door: “No, I think sizes are correct, the problem here is you!”

Carla, replied with a serious voice: “Stop it Liliana, don’t start teasing us. Remember, not everyone can have a waist like yours, it is normal to be size seven”.

Liliana was slim. Her height flattered her figure. She looked like a runway model, and because of that, many girls at school didn’t like, but envied her.

“Your size would be different if you wanted, my dear friends. I’m tired of telling you, there are so many ways to help you out with that, but you don’t want to be helped”, grumbled Lili while they all got out of the dressing rooms.

  • Purpose:

    To foster the development of healthy habits by knowing the causes and consequences of diseases suffered by teenagers around our community.

“We might not be perfect, Lili, but everyone knows that the “miraculous” way you lost weight wasn’t quite the best. A few months ago I lent you my jeans, and you found them difficult to zip, remember? Don’t tell us now that they fitted you because you grew up in height too fast”, interrupted Carla, with a grumpy voice.

“Of course not. It cost me hard work, pain, and money, and it was worth it; nothing’s free in life. While you were trying larger sizes I fitted size 3… Don’t tell me you don’t want to fit in the same size I do”, Liliana asked them, “while she held the small jeans she was about to pay’’. ‘‘But this is the truth; you can’t help yourselves at all. You eat all day long, and maybe five or six times a day. What’s wrong with you? You are going to end up trying clothes from the maternity department!”

Elisa was really angry and interrupted her immediately.

“Listen, Lili, let’s make this thing clear. We don’t eat all day! And since you don’t sit with us to have lunch anymore, you have no right to say those lies. The real problem here is that you are the one that is not right. You said you had no time to eat, and you think nobody notices that you skip your meals more and more often because of your classes at the GYM. We believe that you are exceeding your time there; you are even forgetting to do your homework, and that is indeed a real problem”.

“What I can see here is that you really envy me because I am the only one who accomplishes her goals. I said that I would lose weight for the ball dance and I am doing it. But it is your decision; there are lots of new methods to lose weight for example: reducing creams, pills, shoes, etc. I just want to help you”. Lili justified herself.

But then, Carla interrupted:

“Hey, that’s enough! We’d better hurry, it is almost seven, and my mom is making flour tortillas; she told me that when I was going to my jazz classes. What do you say? Are you in? C’mon, call your parents and tell them we’ll drive you home later. Quit fighting, let’s go!”.

“Didn’t you listen to a word I said or what?” asked Lili.

  • Assessment suggestions:

    Students’ participation in front of the class.

    Suggestions to improve their eating habits.

    Record of the weekly consumed food.

    Elaboration of a collage about “The eat well plate”.

  • Linking:

    Sciences I, Spanish, Arts.

Teaching strategy


  • Activate students’ prior knowledge and experiences with the use of the following questions:

    Have you ever tried to lose weight? Why?

    Do you know any dangerous methods? Mention them.

    Do you consider your own eating habits as “good”?


  • Read the scenario “Going shopping” and observe the students’ reactions.
  • Share your thoughts with the class. Answer the following questions as a guide:

    What problems can you identify in the scenario?

    What did Lily want her friends to do? Why?

    Who is right and why?

    Can you mention the positive and negative attitudes in this reading?

    Would Lily accept her friend’s invitation for dinner? Why do you think she would? Why do you think she wouldn’t?

    If you had the opportunity to talk face to face to Lily, What would you recommend her?


  • Discuss about health problems related to bad eating habits and the measures that should be considered.
  • Ask students to write in their workbooks some recommendations to improve their eating habits.
  • Share with the class the students’ recommendations.

Complementary activities

  • Ask students to research about the eating problems commonly found in adolescence, and the “eat well plate”. The students will bring their research to class.
  • Share with the class the information, and display some health measures to prevent diseases related to bad habits.
  • Ask students if they know the food ingest required for their age, as well as the physical activities they must practice to have a healthy body.
  • Ask students to draw the “eat well plate” in their workbooks, and make a record chart about the food they eat during the week. At the end of the week, the students’ charts will be analyzed comparing their eating habits and related eating disorders.
  • Eating registration record chart

  • Topics:

    Interpersonal relationships.

    Dialogue: A tool to solve problems.

  • Competencies:

    To foster coexistence

  • Values:

    Friendship, Cooperation, Initiative, Team work.

  • Learning outcomes:

    Establishes relationships among peers based on respect, equity, solidarity and dialogue.

    Designs activities to take positive advantage of free time.

  • Block: I

  • Topics: 1 y 2

Scenario 7

We are bored!


It looked like a regular morning. Heat had taken over the small city, and vacations even though they had just started, were extending, attacking the teenagers with sense of boredom. What they watched on TV was not the same as their real life.

“What beaches? What nice walks? What trips?”

“We waited so long for vacations to end up sitting in the front door! Everyday!”

“That’s what I was telling my father, it’s barely the first week, and I’m bored already. I want some action!”.

“Ha,ha,ha,ha!” The four friends laughed to see Arturo’s face of grief as he talked.

Arturo was known for being the most tranquil of the friends, who had just finished first grade of middle school. Arturo kept playing quietly his guitar like background music to the conversation.

“Look who’s talking about action! Besides homework, you never do anything else but play your guitar”.

“This heat is unbearable! I think I’ll go home and finish a picture I’m painting. Next month is my mother’s birthday and that will be her present”.

  • Purpose:

    Recognize the importance of establishing relationships based on respect, equity, solidarity and dialogue.

    Use free time responsibly doing actions to benefit oneself and community.

“C’mon, don’t leave! Let’s keep talking… it’s still early. You can paint later!”

“When I told my father I was bored, he told me: find something useful to do, something for your own benefit and others” interrupted Arturo.

“Oh! Arturo, and what are you thinking about”.

Arturo kept quiet for a second and then his eyes shined and said:


The four teenagers laughed and they could have gone forever, but Sofia showed up and asked friendly: “What are you up to?”

Sofia was a friendly young lady as well as a good student. Her hobby was dancing. Despite her young age, she mastered different styles.

“Nothing, just killing time here. Talking about how we get bored during summer vacations”.

“Don’t you feel ashamed of killing the most important thing humans have: time” said Sofia jokingly.

“Oh, there goes the teacher…”

“And, what have you done?”

“I come from my dance class and I was thinking about what to do the rest of the day. I get bored a lot, too”.

Their chat was interrupted by a woman, who bag in hand, left her house in a hurry. She looked worry.

“Carlos! I’m leaving. Take care of your brothers and sisters. They’re watching TV. I left lunch in the fridge, at two o’clock take it out and heat it up. Eat all together. I’m leaving very worried I’ll be back at five. Please, son, do something useful! Good morning, kids. Sofia, say hello to your mother!”.

Carlos’ mother said all this barely catching her breath; she had to get to work on time.

The kids watched as she left and smiled.

“You see, Arturo? A lot of action waits for me inside with my siblings. After awhile, they’ll get tired of watching TV and start getting into trouble… uf!”.

“We’re all the same…taking care of our little siblings... and I don’t know what to do with mine.” Julio said.

He has three younger siblings to take care of during in the summer. He doesn’t like to because he ends up exhausted, trying to keep them from hurting themselves during so many hours of leisure.

Suddenly, they all remained silent. Only the faint notes played on Arturo’s guitar were heard...

I have an idea!

“You took your time, Ernestito! You’re not a nanny in the summer or what? “Lets see, tell us what’re thinking” Julio said

“This is not a joke. I think we can do something useful. It won’t be easy. We’ll need a lot of organization and compromise to achieve it. I know we can do something really useful and different this summer”.

“Are you including me in your plans, Ernesto?”.

“Of course, Sofía! Listen, Arturo plays the guitar, Sofía dances, I like to paint, Carlos is good at making models and such, and Julio… What can you do?”.

“Mmmmm… lots of things; let’s see, explain your idea...”

  • Teaching suggestions:

    The capability of making team decisions and creating a group project.

    Project: My summer class.

    Ability to exhibit information to the class.

  • Linking:

    Spanish, Arts.

Didactic strategy


  • Activate students’ previous knowledge by implementing the brainstorming technique on scenario starting from the following questions:

    What do you do with your free time?

    What do you regularly do during summer vacations?

    What activities do you like to do with your friends in the summer?


  • Ask the students to read the scenario “We are bored!”.
  • Ask the class the following questions:

    What do you think will be Ernesto’s plan?

    What does the team have to do in order to achieve the plan?

    What would you suggest to this group of friends on how to employ their free time?

  • Mention some recommendations so the teamwork is harmonic.


  • Ask students to answer the following question. Let them share their answers and write them on the board.

    How can you take advantage of a vacation period in timeworthy activities?

Complementary activities

Project: My summer class

  • Form two or three teams (depending on the number of students); name a coordinator for each team.
  • Design a project per team to carry out summer classes during the summer.
  • Take the abilities and skills of team members into account, for example: dance, music, languages, arts and crafts, etc.
  • Assign a name for your project and design a logo for better identification.
  • Present a schedule of activities and commissions for each team member.
  • Show each team project to the group.
  • At the end of the exhibition, choose the most attractive project considering teamwork, and the benefits it leaves to society.
  • Topics:

    Human rights.

    Individual rights and obligations.

  • Competencies:

    To foster social relationships.

  • Values:

    Freedom, Respect.

  • Learning outcomes:

    Knows his rights and the commitment of the Commission for Human Rights.

    Identifies situations where human rights are violated.

  • Field: V

  • Topics: 1, 2 y 3

Scenario 8

An awkward morning


Carmen is the new girl in middle school. Her parents moved to the city in the middle of the school year because of their work. Carmen is a brilliant, devoted and responsible student, because of this, and that she’s new, some of her classmates have not accepted her. They laugh at her and give her “the cold shoulder” when the teachers praise her.

Rocio is the leader of the class. She has been gained it by intimidation and threats. One day, just because she “felt like it” she led her classmates to teach a lesson to the “star of class”, a name given by Carmen.

Taking advantage that school was almost over and that the teacher was called to the principal’s office, Rocío locked the classroom door. Everyone knew what to do… Jose blocked the door; nobody could enter or leave the classroom… a few classmates made a circle around Carmen’s desk… she was shocked, she had no idea what was happening. Some girls tried to calm Rocío, but just with one look she was able to control them.

The “lesson” consisted in the students around the circle would call her names, insulting her.

  • Purpose:

    Analyze critically cases where human right have been violated.

    Recognize the rights and obligations of individuals.

Her first, reaction was to run to the door and try to escape… Jose didn’t let her get out, he pushed her, and told her that they would decide when she could leave.

Meanwhile, Carmen’s father crossed the schoolyard towards the classroom. However, when he knocked nobody opened the door. The students didn’t hear someone was trying to enter.

Immediately, Carmen’s father alerts the school monitor who ran quickly to get the key. Jose moved from the door immediately and Carmen ran out crying.

The hall monitor very angry told them:

“You’ll have committed a very serious offense, remember every action has a consequence.

All the students were speechless as they heard her...

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Reflections from the scenario.

    Knowledge of rights and obligations of individuals.

    Elaboration of a bulletin board.

  • Linking:

    Spanish, Orientation and Tutorial.

Teaching strategy


  • Activate student’s previous knowledge with the following questions:

    Have you ever heard about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?

    Do you know the rights stated in this Declaration?

    Have you ever violated someone’s rights, for example your classmate or have someone violated yours?


  • Organize the class in teams and read the scenario “A different morning”.
  • Have them discuss and reflect on the following questions:

    What would you have done in Carmen’s position?

    Which rights were violated during the situation presented?

    Who can intervene to defend the rights of the affected student?

    What do you think Carmen’s father did after the situation? What would you do in his position?

  • Ask them to think over the problem presented in the classroom. Between team members decide on an ending for the scenario. Use the following questions as a guide:

    What happened after?

    What were the consequences for the group’s behavior?

Do you consider everyone should be punished? Why?


  • Decide the best ending as a class.
  • Write a letter to Rocio. Make comments about her attitude and some suggestions.
  • Talk with your class about the human rights. It is important for them to know their rights as well as their obligations.

Complementary activities

Analyze a journalist article.

  • Divide the class in two teams. Ask team A to bring to class a journalist article where the right of an individual or group have been violated. Write a letter to the Human Rights Commission to denounce the situation.
  • The team B will take the place of the Human Rights Commission. They will analyze the case and make a resolution of the situation.
  • Team A will reflect on the resolution and will ask for a revision if necessary, or make a complaint if the resolution wasn’t fair to their requests.
  • Exhibit the letters and resolutions on the school bulletin board, promoting the respect for human rights. You may include extra information to diffuse this issue to the school community.
  • Topics:

    Environmental pollution.

    Global warming.

  • Competencies:

    To foster life inside society.

  • Values:

    Respect, Responsibility, Social participation.

  • Learning outcomes:

    To recognize obligations needed to preserve the environment.

    To propose feasible actions to improve the way of living in the community.

  • Field: I

  • Topics: 2/2.1, 2.2, 2.3

Scenario 9

An unbearable heat


It was common in our city that the days became hotter during May. However, this wasn’t a usual day as the residents of the neighborhood expressed. Lucia and Rosa bought a Popsicle to mitigate the hot temperatures, while they talked about their afternoon activities.

“Hey Rosa, how about we stop by my aunt’s house to borrow her inflatable swimming pool? I can’t stand this heat!”, Lucía suggested, as she wiped her sweat off.

“I don’t know… We’d better go buy the groceries with your mom, so we can enjoy the air conditioner for a while, don’t you think so?”, Rosa replied immediately.

Both friends kept talking while they walked back home under the intense sun, and a temperature up to 40 degrees Celsius. They decided to go to Rosa’s house to finish homework, and after that they would decide how to mitigate that heat.

Rosa’s mother had just finished cooking. She asked the girls to set the table for lunch. After they were all seated, the talk started…

  • Purpose:

    To involve students and raise awareness through a process of identifying values that foster environmental ethics, as well as encourage them to help take care of the planet.

“Mom! The weather is crazy, we are dying because of the heat, and grandma says it rains all day in Distrito Federal” Rosa complained.

“Mrs. Lopez, are these high temperatures normal? My mom thinks the heat is increasing more and more every year. Do you know why?”.

Rosa’s father, who listened to every word from the living room, interrupted the conversation.

“Girls, these are consequences we have to face due to our neglect and disrespect for our planet. It is not a coincidence that some places are getting hotter while others suffer terrible floods that take hundreds of lives and foster economic losses”, the father said in a serious mood.

“Well, dad… What are we supposed to do? I can’t fight the world by myself. Besides, how can a person change anything when the rest of the people keep doing bad things?” Rosa replied with annoyance.

“But we can help, Rosa! We could start doing simple changes. Then we could convince our friends and then our family”, said Lucia, trying to persuade her.

“Well, you are not convincing me, Lucy. Besides, it’s useless! There’s no way I can save the world by turning off a single light, don’t you think so? Or by deciding to recycle plastic bags instead of throwing them into the river, right? Well, I don’t …!”.

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Students’ Knowledge of key concepts about environmental care.

    Students’ own reflections about environmental care.

    The impact of students’ actions to take care of the environment in their context.

  • Linking:

    Science I.

    Geography of Mexico and the world.

Teaching strategy


  • Activate students’ prior knowledge and experiences by using the following questions as a guide:

    Have you ever heard about global warming? Do you know how is it originated?

    Who is responsible for the change in our environmental conditions?

    Do you believe that your every day actions contribute to aggravate the problem of global warming? Can you mention some actions?


  • Ask the class to read the scenario “An unbearable heat” and identify the main problem in the story.
  • Ask the following questions to the class:

    Who is right, Lucia or Rosa? Why?

    How can Rosa’s attitude change?

    What would Rosa’s father answer after she asked him what to do?


  • Ask students about current environmental problems. You may list them on the board. Then, ask the following questions:

    How can we help to preserve the environment?

    Do you know how saving energy helps reducing global warming?

    Who is responsible for making laws to preserve and take care of nature?

  • What actions are taken to encourage caring for the planet? Have you participated in any?

    Do you consider that your community is doing something tohelp the environment? Have you noticed a change?

    What kind of actions can you practice to take care of the environment at your house or school?

  • Organize a plenary session where you present the teams’ answers, as well as the ideas and actions to take care of the environment written in their workbooks.
  • Analyze the conclusions. Suggest implementing these actions periodically.

Complementary activities

Charge up!

  • Answer the following questions:

    What do you do with your empty batteries?

    Do you know a special place to dump empty batteries?

    What should you do to get rid of your batteries properly?

  • Organize your students to run a campaign to collect empty batteries. They must select the containers for the collection and the means to promote this project.
  • A new committee will be assigned to take the batteries to the authorized places for their proper disposal every week.
  • Students’ knowledge and project will be evaluated at the end of the campaign.
  • Topics:

    Solution of problems.

  • Competencies:

    To foster life inside society.

  • Values:

    Peace, Respect.

  • Learning outcomes:

    Identifies problematic situations encountered in the classroom and solves them by talking to classmates.

  • Field: I

  • Topic: 1

Scenario 10

The exhibition


1st grade ‘E’ from the middle school afternoon shift, prepared an art exposition with the help of their teacher. They presented every work made in arts class during the month, and invited their parents to see their work.

The next day, the class had a big surprise when they saw some of the works lying on the floor; others had their images peeled off, and marker scribbles on them.

The students reacted with anger and started to think about a punishment for whoever was responsible. They all believed the students from the morning shift were guilty.

Different solutions were suggested in the classroom: “We’ll wait for them when the morning shift ends, and then we’ll give them what they deserve”, “Let’s throw away their scale models left in the locker to teach them a lesson”, “Here we have their notebooks, let’s throw them into the trash can”, “as my grandma always used to say… An eye for an eye...!”.

Laughs were heard every time a new punishment was suggested, some of them would yell out insults against their “enemies” while they cleaned the disaster.

  • Purpose:

    To learn how to manage problems between groups and establish means to provide a solution.

Suddenly, a tall and strong boy stood in front of everyone, holding a bunch of paper sheets in his hand as he shouted: “Look what I do to your little Science projects … They’ll all go to the trash can!”.

One by one, he started ripping the paper sheets with his hands as he talked.

Everybody looked at him with surprise, and asked him not to do it. The majority complained at him for this action, but some others encouraged him.

The boy said: “That’s what you wanted, wasn’t it? We only want them to feel what we felt!..”

  • Evaluation suggestions:

    Peace proposals to promote healthy relationships at school.

    Students’ posters and flyers.

    Written conclusions about priority class issues.

  • Linking:

    Arts, Spanish.

Teaching strategy


  • Activate students’ prior knowledge and experiences through the following questions:

    How can we have harmonic relation among persons and groups?


  • Ask students to read the scenario “The exhibition”, then answer the following questions together:

    What is the main problem?

    Who incited the conflict?

    What should the students from group “E” do?

    Do you think they came up with the best solution? Why?

    What would you do?

  • Write an ending for the story in teams. Students can use these questions as a guide: How de you think the incident ended? What punishment should the responsible one receive?
  • Ask students to suggest different actions to prevent future conflictive situations.
  • Share students’ answers with the class, and write down their proposals. Which can be applied at school to promote peace and respect?


  • Elaborate posters and flyers promoting the values of peace and respect. Display them at the crowded spots of the school and deliver the flyers at the entrance.
  • Make students select the most interesting written messages and share opinions.

Complementary activities

Dynamic “Good vs Bad”*

  • Hand blank paper sheets, and ask students to work individually.
  • Ask students to write the positive and negative aspects observed in class, and rank them by importance and priority.
  • After some time (10 minutes) organize teams of five to discuss their ideas deciding the priorities of the aspects.
  • Organize a plenary session for the teams to expose their conclusions and reasons.
  • List the class’ priorities.

* Copied and adapted from:
Gil, M. A. (2007). 500 Dinamicas Grupales. Puebla: Gil Editores.

  • Topics:

    Human rights.

    Rights and obligations of individuals.

  • Competencies:

    To foster life in society.

  • Values:

    Liberty, Respect.

  • Learning outcomes:

    To recognize the benefits of living in democracy, respecting opinion of others and assumes responsibility as a member of a group.

  • Field: V

  • Topics: 1, 2 y 3

Scenario 11

The “posada”


Miss Corina is the tutor of the 1stgrade; group C of the middle school “Francisco Flores Sanchez”. To tell you the truth, it is hard for this group to get organized. They even ended up quarreling when they tried to plan the Mexican night, and decided to cancel it because it was difficult for them to make choices.

“Too bad! Who wants to have a party anyways? It’s soboring to get people organized!”, a student said.

“Well, I hope we were united and would do activities together. Nothing will happen to us if we show a little interest”, Paola answered.

“This all is our tutor´s fault; she never does anything; she just looks at us as when we discuss. She should tell us what to do, don’t you think? She is the adult here”, Luis said.

This group of friends continued talking about this and never got into an agreement. So, the days passed and December arrived…

Miss Corina encouraged her students to celebrate the posada as a group. But, as soon as the issue was mentioned, their differences appeared: They could not agree about food... the place... the time... the date...

“Miss, you should state the agreements. If they don´t want to go to the party, it’s their problem. Things will be easier that way. Otherwise, we will never reach an agreement!” Luis stated.

The teacher only became thoughtful and made a gesture of disapproval…

  • Purpose:

    To guarantee social relationships around different areas: familiar, school, and society fostering tolerance, solidarity and respect of different opinion, tolerance and solidarity.

Teaching strategy


  • Elicit student’s previous knowledge by the following questions:

    How can people and groups set agreements from discussions?

    Do you know the meaning of the term “argue” when people discuss?


  • To organize the class by teams and read the scenario “The posada”. Each team will choose a leader.
  • Show the students the following questions to guide the analysis of the scenario:

    What would the decision of the teacher be?, Why didn’t she like Luis’s comment?

    Why was it difficult to reach agreements in the group of 1st grade “C”?

    What attitudes should be taken by the students?

    Should the teacher make the decisions instead of the students in order to solve the conflicts?

  • Assessing suggestions:

    Answers from given questions.

    List of suggestions to help reaching agreements.

    Role-playing about the suggestions from complementary activities.

  • Linking:

    Arts, Spanish.

  • Ask each team to propose an ending for the scenario considering a solution for the conflict.
  • Ask the team leaders to read their final proposal then choose the best ending to solve the problem.


  • Ask students these questions:

    Which values must be immerse when agreements are reached?

    What suggestions would you share to the group of 1st grade “C” to reach agreements?

  • Check students’ answers.
  • Take notes and ask them to make a list of suggestions to help reaching positive agreements among people and groups’ discussions. Have them record these suggestions in their workbooks.

Complementary activities

Dynamic “We have a problem”*

  • Ask students to make teams of 3, 4 or 5 people.
  • Attach each team with a problem or conflictive situation. Students will act out suggesting a solution.
  • Give each team ten minutes for preparation and organization. Then each team will present their role-play in 5 minutes max.
  • Observe and analyze each team’s participation. Discuss with the whole class the solution to each problem, the way they get them and the values needed.


1. Your apartment neighbors party every weekend making lots of noise at night. Every affected neighbor has tried to reach an agreement with them but they show a denial attitude, they claim and argue their own right to “do what they want” at their house.

2. A family is deciding a place to go on vacations. Their options are: a beautiful place that everyone likes, but expensive; a picnic, but it will be a rainy season and Granma wouldn’t go.

3. It is the beginning of the school year and the group needs to select a leader, an alternate leader and a treasurer. Some “cool” students decide to reduce the selection into a smaller group of selected people.

4. Mario’s group will be in charge of the civic ceremony to honor the Mexican symbols. Every student of the class wants to participate because of the extra points promised by their teachers. Who should participate?

* Copied and adapted from:
Gil, M. A. (2007). 500 Dinamicas Grupales. Puebla: Gil Editores.

Appendix 1

Glossary for education in values

Citizenship: It comes from the Latin voice civitas. It is defined in terms of responsibility, in the sense of corresponsabilization.

Citizenship is the belonging to a political community and it is constituted in several terms in different societies. It is linked to freedom (taken as a part of natural right, in other words, universal), or justice, or one and the other, and in this sense, it is identified with the exercise of three classes of human rights:

  • 1. Civil rights. For example: to life, to expression, to property.
  • 2. Political rights. For example: to electoral decision, to political party and union association.
  • 3. Social rights. For example: to work, to education, to health.

Currently, the idea of citizenship covers rights and duties/obligations: considered as coessential for being members of a community. More precisely, we could say that the new citizenship gathers the rights of freedom and equality, with the rights of solidarity. In this sense, the concept of citizenship joins the one of democracy andis characterized by the need of reconciling the demands of participation, on one side and on the other, the ones of justice with the ones of the market.

Civic: Respectful behavior of citizens about the norms of public coexistence.

Competency: Ability to successfully achieve the complex demands through mobilization of the psychosocial prerequisites, in a way that the individual results, reached through action, selection, or behavior according to the demands, are emphasized. Similarly, we can say that it refers to a successful intervention in a concrete problem-situation through actions in which attitudinal, procedural and conceptual actions are mobilized.

Democracy: : It is derived from the Greek word demos, which means “town” and kratos that means “town’s government and authority”. Nowadays, the concept of democracy is not limited to a determined form of government; it refers to a set of norms for social and political coexistence.

Democracy as a lifestyle is a form of life based on the respect to human dignity, freedom and rights of each and all of the members of a community.

Democracy as a form of government implies the participation of the people ingovernment action through suffrage and the exercised control over what is done by the State.

Human rights:Set of prerogatives, which are inherent to a person’s nature, indispensablefor the integral development of an individual who lives in a society legally organized. These rights, established in the constitution and laws, must be recognized and guaranteed by the State.

We are all obligated to the respect human rights of others. However, according to the constitutional mandate, the ones with greater responsibility in this sense are the government authorities, that is, men and women in public office. The duty of protecting human rights represents for the State, the demand of providing and maintaining the necessary conditions, in justice, peace and freedom, so that people could really enjoy all their rights. The common welfare supposes that public power must do everything it takes to, gradually, overcome inequality, poverty and discrimination.

Dialogue: It comes from the Latinso dialogues and the Greek διάλογος. Currently, it still has an eminent normative value. The dialogue implies to talk, discuss, ask and answer between associated people in a common interest of investigation. The principle of dialogue implies philosophical and religious tolerance, in a positive and active sense and therefore, not the kind of tolerance where different points of view exist, but the one where equal legitimacy and good will to understand reasons. A growing appreciation of dialogue is accompanied by a growing appreciation and thanks to in that atmosphere dialogue concretely lives and persists.

Human dignity: "The principle of human dignity" enunciated by Kant means the requirement as a second formula of the categorical imperative: "Act so as to treat humanity, whether in your person or in the person of another, always as an end and never merely as a means".

Education with values: Process to induce civic education in scholars, based on the active participation of their insertion in the social, cultural, political and economical contexts of their community, their province (states) and their nation.

Values education must be understood, from the constructivist perspective, as a set of natural situations and scenarios, assisted by the experience of teachers, allowing students to build their civic personality in interaction with their peers, their teachers and own sociocultural context of the institution and the social group they belong to.

Equity: It comes from the Latin aequitas, from aequus, equal; from the Greek επιεικεία, virtue of justice in a concrete case.

It is customary beneficial temperance. It is a propensity to be guided, or to fail, for the feeling of duty, or awareness, and the rigourous prescriptions of justice and the strict text of law.

It is the appealing to justice to correct the law that expresses justice. The same nature of equity is the correction of law when it is shown to be insufficient by its universal character. The law necessarily has to have a general character, and, because of this, sometimes shows to be imperfect, or with a difficult application to particular cases. In such cases, equity intervenes to judge, not from the law, but from justice and that the same law is conducted to do. Justice and equity are not the same things; equity is superior, not to justice per se, but what is formulated in a law that by reason of universality is subjected to error.

Ethics: Science of behavior. There are two fundamental concepts of this science, namely: 1) the considered end science directed to behavior of mankind and the means to achieve and to deduce such end, both end and means of mankind's nature; 2) the considered impulse science of human behavior and intends to determine it with the aim to direct or discipline behavior itself.

Honesty: Attribute of human quality that consists in behaving and expressing with sincerity and coherence (tell the truth) according to the values of truth and justice.

Identity: National identity is manifestedmainly through language, traditions and customs, common history, general values, aspirations as a people, the ethnic composition of the population, the specific culture they have generated, etc.

National identity is manifested mainly through language, traditions and customs, common history, general values, aspirations as a people, the ethnic composition of the population, the specific culture they have generated, etc.

Equality: Principle that grants all citizens equal rights.

You can describe the moral and legal equality as that by which an individual who is subject to certain conditions or privileges has the same possibilities as another in the same conditions.

Justice: It originates from the Latin termiustitia and allows denominating one of the four cardinal virtues, one inclined to give everyone his belongings.

It is a value determined by society. It was born from the necessity of keeping peace among the members of a community. It is the group of rules that establish an appropriate frame for people and institutions, authorizing, prohibiting and allowing specific actions in individual and institutional interactions.

Moral: Pertaining or related to the actions or characters of a person, from the perspective of good and evil.

Libertad: Comes from the Latin libertas, -atis, of equal meaning. Capability mankindpossess to act according to own will, throughout life; therefore, responsible for own actions.

Reciprocity: It comes from the Latin reciprocitas and it refers to the mutual correspondence of a person or thing with another. It is the principle of universal relationship of things in the world, principle by which a community is formed, an organized whole.

Respect: From the Latin respectus, it means attention, consideration. The term refers to moral and ethical issues. The recognition of self-dignity or someone else’s dignity is a behavior originated in this acknowledgment.

Commonly, respect is known by the endeavor of recognizing others, or himself/herself; a certain dignity that is required to be protected.

Respect is the consideration that someone has a value in itself and is set to reciprocity, mutual respect and mutual recognition.

Responsibility: It is the virtue or habitual disposition to assume the consequences of people’s own decisions, responding for them. It is the ability to respond for their own acts. It is all that concerns me in an exclusive way and that I can’t humanly reject.

Solidarity: The root refers to conduct in-solidum, that is, that the destinies of two or more people join. Therefore, to show solidarity is not only to help, but involves a commitment to that to which you are given the solidarity. In the most basic sense, solidarity is supposed to be practiced without distinction of gender, race, nationality, religion, or political affiliation. Solidarity is moved only by the conviction of justice and equality.

Tolerance: Respect for the ideas, beliefs or practices of others, when they are different, or contrary to the ones we have.

Values: Principles that allow us to guide our behavior in function of self-realization. They are fundamental beliefs that help us prefer, appreciate and choose some things instead of others, or one behavior instead of another. They are also a source of satisfaction.

Truth: It comes from the Latin veritas. It is the validity or effectiveness of cognitive processes. By means truth generally the quality by which a cognitive procedure is effective or any succeeds. Truth, in general, is understood as the quality through which a cognitive procedure is efficient or successful.

Virtue: Designates any capability or Excellency that belongs to any thing or being. Its specific meanings could be reduced to three: 1)general capability or potential, 2) Capability or Human potential; 3) Capability or potential, of moral nature.

Appendix 2

Resources to learn more about education in values
Bindé, J. (2004). ¿Hacia dónde se dirigen los valores?, México, Fondo de Cultura Económica

Currently, there is a weakening and a crisis of values, which has been mainly produced by globalization only worried by technical progress; which in essence, has led to an increased materialism that has proven to be incapable of guiding actions and remains indifferent to the strength of values. This value crisis is manifested in the use of terms such as “nihilism”, “loss of meaning”, “values’ disappearance”, or “civilization shock” and values which are supposedly irreducible.

Cappello, H. (2004). El caso de los Congresos Internacionales sobre la Familia del DIF Tamaulipas: Construcción de políticas sociales, identidad colectiva y ciudadanía, Tamaulipas, DIF Tamaulipas

Analyzes the case of International Conferencesof DIF TamaulipasFamily, explaining how the institutions in the State-Nation are a fundamental part of the process to create a common collective identity, a civic-political consistent character and an awareness of the most important problems and virtues in the community.

Chávez, M. (2010). Formación cívica y ética. Oferta de actualización para maestros, México, Instituto Nacional de Evaluación Educativa (INNE)

Document that presents the conceptual frame and the results of the documental analysis of the course materials, workshops and strategy notebooks for teachers of civic and ethical formation. The study was conducted with the purpose of exploring at what extent these materials satisfy the needs of teaching formation to teach that subject.

Cortés, M. (2004). Una mirada psicoeducativa a los valores, España, Prensas Universitarias de Zaragoza

Theoretical and practical contents about moral development and its educational side that are seeking empowering personal, moral andethical growth in students and, at certain point, to point out criteria and ethical education strategies for the professional development in the educational environment with the new technologies.

Education in values and Education for Development

International organization dedicated to education with values. Multiple educational resources (videos, documents) in human rights education, for the citizenship, for peace, among other key topics linked to education with values is offered in website. http://www.educacionenvalores. org/spip.php?rubrique8

Hoyos, G. et al. (2001). La educación en valores en Iberoamérica, Madrid, Organización de Estados Iberoamericanos (OEI)

Different Latin American experts present their perspectives about education with values. Among the analyzed topics, the role of education with values for the construction of democratic societies facing the society of knowledge, are the highlighted topics; in addition, it makes an interesting introduction of some teaching strategies and specific evaluation of education with values.

Luengo, F. y Moya, J. (2008). Escuela, familia, comunidad: Claves para la acción, España, Wolters Kluwer España, S.A.

Democratic education is not the onlysole responsibility and competence of the teachers; but involves all citizens in different levels and with complementary activities: education professionals, family, municipalities, civic associations, trade unions and democratic schools.

This work gathers ideas, resources and experiences that have been used to fight for that final objective since project Atlántida: close collaboration betweenschool, family and society, all together.

Martín, X. y Puig, J.M. (2007). Las siete competencias básicas para educar en valores, Barcelona, Graó

To educate with values, we need certain domain in seven competencies; to be one-self; to recognize others, to facilitate dialogue, to regulate participation, to work in teams, to form a school community and to work in a network. The work proposes that education with values is an essential occupation that teachers suggestfor mastering certain competencies.

Moreno, A. y Méndez, P. (2004). Familia y sociedad: Un estudio sobre los valores de los tamaulipecos, Tamaulipas, DIF Tamaulipas

The prevalent Cosmo-vision in the state of Tamaulipas is analyzed and interpreted, as well as the social manifestations that will be more common in the upcoming years. It reflects ideas, attitudes and values of Tamaulipas’ people in a way that these are known, appreciated and prepared for facing a new century.

Mota, G. (2006). Educación cívica y ciudadana: una visión global, México, Santillana

Proposes the need of strengthening dignity, identity and indispensable civil participation in the social construction of new democratic societies, based on jointly agreed upon and informed decisions. Because of the importance of this topic, this is a book of interest for the teachers of any level and also for scholars, academic, researchers and concerned citizens andbetter said, busy, with the development and consolidation of democratic life, that each day is more rooted in our country and some other Hispanic ones.

Navarro, G. (2000). El diálogo. Procedimientos para la educación en valores, España, Desclée de Brouwer, S.A.

Adolescence is a critical stage in the formation of adult personality and in morality consolidation. It is the critical moment when the individual discovers rationality and autonomy, but at the same time, s/he uses this wonderful capability of thinking by him/herself against traditional thinking, authority and morality. This often results in a crisis of values, whose uncertain culmination could leave their personality and moral judgment rooted in mere conventionalism void of principles. For them, it becomes necessary to elaborate strategies that propitiate and develop the fondness for rational thinking as a means to elaborate norms and discover values to facilitate coexistence and the solution of conflicts through dialogue.

Ochoa, A. (2010). La formación del docente para la asignatura de Formación Cívica y Ética: el caso de Querétaro, México, Congreso Iberoamericano de Educación, Metas 2021

The article reports the opinion of the teachers on the formation to teach the subject Civic and Ethical Formation and it points out some suggestions from the same teachers to improve these processes of formation.

Organización de Estados Iberoamericanos (OEI), Valores

This is a web site with several publications of investigations, programs and educational resources on education with values, developed in Latin America.

Rollano, D. (2004). Educación en valores. Teoría y práctica para los docentes, España, Ideas Propias

It gives a guide about the basic contents of education with values and mentions the very important role values have in the personal and social development of the individual. It presents an approach for education with values and it also covers the need for an integral education.

SEP (2011). Encuentro Educación y Valores para la Convivencia en el siglo XXI, 4-9 abril, México

Experts and international leaders encounter with the Mexican educational community to analyze in a critical way the civic and ethical values required for the Mexican citizen formation in the XXI century. The website grants access to the interesting lectures of the conferences’ keynote speakers and the different panels of discussions and forums analyzingwhat has been made. http://www.educacionyvalores. mx/estructura/actividades-academicas

UNESCO, Valores para vivir

International initiative supported by UNESCO, dedicated to the promotion of education with values. The web page in Spanish contains references to the programs, educational materials and formation courses. index.php?lang=spanish


Bolívar, A. (1998). Educar en valores. Una educación para la ciudadanía, España, Consejería de Educación y Ciencia de la Junta de Andalucía.

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Table of Contents

Book of Values

VALUE EDUCATION | Middle School First Grade 25