Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Toolbox of Faith: A Program That Helps Children Discover the Uses of Faith

Taking It Home: Integrity (Compass)

What's very important to me is when Dumbledore says that you have to choose between what is right and what is easy. This is the setup for the next three books. All of them are going to have to choose, because what is easy is often not right. -- J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, in Conversations with — J.K. Rowling by Lindsay Fraser


The compass symbolizes integrity. We defined as our inner moral compass a quality of Unitarian Universalist faith. The children talked about how we listen to our inner voices and what it feels like when our moral compass swings toward truth. We emphasized that to discern what is right is often not easy.

We learned about integrity because:

  • Unitarian Universalism is a faith that will help us find ways to decide what is right, and to stand up for what is right, even in confusing times.
  • Unitarian Universalism values justice, equity, and compassion in human relations (second Principle)
  • Unitarian Universalism affirms the direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life (Source)

The children heard "Fire, Water, Truth, and Falsehood," a tale from Ethiopia in Northeast Africa that comes from Wisdom Tales from around the World by Heather Forest.


Discuss family stories about times when a family member chose to act with integrity. What does your family do that promotes integrity?

See how each member of your family answers these questions:

  • Have you ever acted on something your inner voice tells you to do even though the outer world doesn't require it? How?
  • Have you felt your "moral compass" swinging toward truth when you have lost your way?
  • Have you ever met or read about someone who was described as having integrity? Who? What was their story?



From weathervanes to GPS (global positioning systems), our society uses a variety of tools for finding direction. Visit a consumer technology store such as a Circuit City, a Brookstone, or an Apple store with your child, and investigate the GPS products for sale. Look up compass points and satellite positions for your home and other locations.

Online, you can view maps and live satellite images of your own community and get directions to almost anywhere in the world on Google and other websites. "Geo-caching" collects the information that supports these online services; learn how geo-caching is done and how the public participates.

The Compass Dude website is a resource for all things "compass," including alternate ways of finding direction.

Take an interactive quiz about compasses online, on a website published by illustrator Jan Brett.