Character Strength Lessons

Welcome to the third sample lesson! Below, you’ll find animations about identifying and cultivating character strengths. The first animation is great to spur a discussion on how one develops strengths. The second animation is a research-based technique used to build character strengths. Finally, check out some sample worksheets to supplement the lesson. Remember, you’re only seeing a small slice of the program. In the full program, students will learn about the science of character strengths, access scenario quizzes/games, and even take a survey to identify their strengths!

1. Where do strengths come from?

Alternate Video Source

Key Learning Points!

  • Where do strengths come from? Are humanoids just born with strengths or can they be developed?
  • Aristotle said to Nik and Sam, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” In other words, even though you can be born with certain strengths, you can also have any strength you want just by taking action. 
  • Researchers spent years developing a catalog of strengths and core virtues which span across cultures and time.
  • Check out the 24 strengths and 6 core virtues identified from this research.
    • Wisdom and Knowledge: creativity, curiosity, open-mindedness, love of learning, perspective
    • Courage: bravery, persistence, integrity, zest
    • Love and Humanity: love, kindness, social intelligence
    • Justice: citizenship, fairness, leadership
    • Temperance: forgiveness and mercy, humility, prudence, self control
    • Spirituality and Transcendence: appreciation of beauty and excellence, gratitude, hope, humor, spirituality

2. Strength Stories

Alternate Video Source

Key Learning Points!

  • Did you see that? Wasn’t that fun, youthling?!
  • Sabrina was able to highlight three of her strengths with strength stories. 
  • This is an excellent practice and one that you could try right now! Think of one of your greatest strengths. When did you use it last?

3. Supplementary Activity Sheets


Academic References

Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2009). Character strengths: Research and practice. Journal of College and Character, 10(4), np.

Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. (2004). Character strengths and virtues: a handbook and classification. New York: Oxford University Press/Washington, DC: American Psychological Association

Peterson, C. (2006). A primer in positive psychology. New York: Oxford University Press.

VIA Institute on Character website:

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