4 ways to teach your kids to value integrity


As a parent I want to raise my daughter’s to not only tell the truth but I want them to value integrity also.  I want them to be people of integrity.

To be a person of integrity means to be someone who is completely honest, trustworthy, reliable and dependable, whether others are watching or not.

Unfortunately today’s culture does not value integrity.  Our culture teaches that it’s okay to do whatever we want as long as no one gets hurt and we don’t get caught.

We are living in a day when success has become more important than honesty.  You don’t have to read too many newspapers or watch the news for very long to see examples of this in our world.

So how do we inspire our children to live with integrity in a culture that winks at dishonesty and elevates success?

4 ways to teach our kids to value integrity

(from Susan A. Yates article “Shades of Deception” in “Thriving Family“)

1. Grow in integrity.

As parents, we need to ask ourselves: “Do we value integrity more than success?”  Because if we value integrity, we will be modeling it in our lives.

We have to be vigilant in this because of our culture’s warped values.  The desire for success can subtly influence our decisions and ultimately erode our character if we are not careful.

2. Initiate conversations.

Talk in the car.  Talk at the dinner table.  Just talk together.  Discuss character traits with your child.  Be honest about ways you may struggle. Discuss what God’s Word has to say about integrity.

3.  Be alert.

Be aware of what is happening in your child’s life.  Spend time in their school.  Meet their friends.  Know what they are watching on TV or reading and talk about how these things are influencing them.

4. Pray for your child.

Pray that your child would have the strength and personal conviction to do the right thing, even when it is difficult.  Prayer helps us all as we endeavour to become people of integrity.

Sometimes it is through failure that real growth begins.

We are going to fail and so are our kids.  It helps to remember that our children are not looking for perfect parents – they’re looking for honest parents.

Honesty brings credibility to our character and reflects our commitment to model integrity.  And that’s true success.

How are you teaching your children integrity?

****** This post was heavily influenced by Susan A. Yates article “Shades of Deception” in “Thriving Family

Categories: Parenting


  • I would say that one of the ways I am teaching my daughter integrity is through the willingness to admit failure. She sees me own up to mistakes. I am eager to hear others voices on this as well. I hope I can learn a few things from the members of this community as well.

  • Jarrod says:

    Hello Kevin,

    I don’t have kids at the time, so I’m not teaching integrity within my personal family yet. But, I must say that I couldn’t agree more with the points you’ve made. I believe that integrity and values trickle from the head of the family on down. Whatever values the parents exemplify, is what the children will take on. I was raised in a family of high integrity and values and I would certainly vouch that, yes, talking to the kids, and investing a time and sincere concern for their interests, friends, school work, etc is key.

    The scriptures tells us the prayers of the righteous avails much and I believe it! Prayer works in everything but it’s definitely needed in the home. Because as soon as the children leave the home, their being raised by a village that probably don’t value the same morals as the home. My parents prayed over us and I’m glad they did.

    Another thing I’d like to say about integrity is, people will always remember you for the integrity you have. You’re right, Kevin, it’s possible to be successful but we should want to be successful on the back of integrity. And everyone that we deal with whether in business, personal friends, casual settings, these people will always remember us for the integrity and values we uphold.


    • Great thoughts here Jarrod!

      I can totally relate to having a parent praying over you. I know my mom faithfully kept me in prayer and I am also thankful for the “little old ladies” in my church who faithfully prayed for me too!

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Having walked through some horrible kids and g-kids serious choices [in a couple of cases, it’s been in the last month or so, teens headed toward destruction] and seeing the consequences, it’s very serious that somehow they have shifted their hearts from the Lord. What you said about our overall culture is true: it does not value integrity.

    Parents and churches can plant it in their hearts. And I’m not trying to sound depressing and “dark”, but I have seen much happen and many hurt, and their parents did the right things. That is when I can turn to Proverbs 22:6 and rely on the Holy Spirit and the Love our our Dear Lord to win this battle.


    • We are definitely not guaranteed anything in our parenting even if we do our best. But we can lay the foundation and trust God to work in their lives.

      Thanks for sharing Joanne!

  • Fatima Hipolito says:

    Nice one kevs I love to see this, for me this is really useful I will apply this to my kids..

  • Kriscia says:

    Thanks Kevin for the nice post here…I know this can be a big help then…

  • Mika Castro says:

    Good choice for kids. Encountering different attitudes of children is really problematic especially on teachers, however, it takes a little time to resolve it, it would be easy when we apply this.

  • My youngest is 12, and so far it’s easy to tell what he is doing and what is influencing him when he is not at school. He spends almost all of his time in the same room with me!!! I work at my computer, which is in the living room, and most of what he likes to do in his out-of-school time is either in the living room or outside. He also loves to stay with his older sisters, who are all in their 20s and living away from home. One is married… the other two share a house in the same town. He has Christian friends at school, but I’m glad he cherishes his time with his family. I hope this will continue through his teens, as it did with all 6 of his older siblings.

    Willena Flewelling

    • That is such an awesome testimony Willena! Building that love for family doesn’t happen all by itself. It obviously took modelling and teaching on your part.

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Nile says:

    I teach my son how my father taught me. To be honest, and keep your promises. I see a lot of kids who do not show that they have been raised to value integrity. It is often hard to keep my mouth shut because it does make me worried for them. All I can do is pray they learn to have integrity.

  • Rick Morgan says:

    In-teg-ri what?!?

    I haven’t heard of that in a long time.
    It is amazing how many shades of the truth that we are willing to accommodate.

  • James Bennett says:


    Great post and great reference.
    It is an often missing piece. If you want children that have a high morale character, then teaching and parenting with integrity is important. Architects and Engineers use the term more often than we hear it in daily life. They are speaking to the integrity of a structure, be it building or bridge or something else. If the foundation doesn’t have integrity, then the structure could fall. The same goes with the lessons we teach and the character we try to establish. Great Post!

  • Adam says:

    Great post Kevin. Being alert I think is one things parents today are not. Being the spouse of a teacher I hear stories daily of kids whose parents have no idea what is going on in their child’s life, an a lot of times there are not even parents involved in their kids lives. Parenting is a huge responsibility that some people take far to lightly.

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