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Lesson: Training Leaders How to Be Leaders

 

Description

Two of the most important parts of setting up the next year are going through the process of picking the right leaders and figuring out who does what job. But prior experience on staff and impressing whoever picks the leaders doesn’t immediately make leaders great. Training leaders how to lead is essential to creating a successful team from top to bottom. With some careful planning — and allowing the leaders to train each other — the adviser will create a culture that nurtures leaders that will carry throughout the year.

By the end of this lesson, leaders should feel empowered with skills acknowledged or learned to use while working with their peers.

 

Summary

Leaders must carve out time to nurture their roles beyond skills know-how and editing. They will create and conduct their own workshop for leadership training. This can be done in a retreat setting, at the school as an informal workshop or a location of the group’s choosing. The goal is for them to understand how to motivate others and earn respect from the group. Expectations will be thought out, clear and concise. All leaders will be stakeholders in this process.

 

Objective

  • Leaders will reflect on strengths and weaknesses from previous leadership boards to understand what worked, what didn’t and why.
  • Leaders will also research an approved topic on how to lead individuals and present to each other.
  • Students will participate in a discussion regarding the topics presented by each other.
  • The group will create a list of what a successful leader looks like in all the various positions on the board.
  • The group will also create a list of what an unsuccessful leader looks like in all positions of the board.
  • Leaders will also reflect on their strengths and weaknesses as it pertains to how they should lead effectively.

 

Common Core Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9-10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1d Respond thoughtfully to diverse perspectives, summarize points of agreement and disagreement, and, when warranted, qualify or justify their own views and understanding and make new connections in light of the evidence and reasoning presented.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.2 Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence clearly, concisely, and logically such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and task.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology’s capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.8 Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the usefulness of each source in answering the research question; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.

 

Materials

Paper and pen for note taking and presentation prep

Computer/Laptop with Internet access (1:1 preferably for individual project research)

As each person conducts their research for their presentation/discussion, there may be more materials needed.

Class Set: Let’s Get Personal

A method to brainstorm as a group: poster board or dry erase board and markers, chalkboard, projector hooked up to laptop are all good ideas

 

Lesson step-by-step

1. Reflection Activity (group work)— 30 minutes

On a sheet of paper, leaders will work collectively to create a list of what went well and what went not so well with leadership boards in years past. Before starting the activity, it is a good idea to set boundaries to enforce productivity. There is a focus to the activity, and the adviser needs to keep the group moving forward. If there are returning members to the board from the previous year, they need to also stay focused at the task at hand as well. Remind everyone this should not be personal, this should be a safe space, but time invested to strengthen the group.

 

2. Individual Project Homework Assignment (group work)— 10-20 minutes (depending on group size)

Leaders will be asked to go and research a leadership topic and create a 5-15 minute discussion/presentation on their information. They will teach what they have learned to the group, as they will be teaching them some new information. Examples of leadership topics include:

  • The difference between a boss and a leader
  • Motivating others to move
  • How to give feedback people will actually respond to
  • How to handle criticism as a leader
  • 10 things you need to manage before managing others
  • 6 ways a leader should show up
  • Habits you have are destroying your ability to lead
  • Qualities teams look for in their leaders
  • Ways to be a leader, not a manager
  • Is your ego limiting your ability to lead?
  • Start with Why (Simon Sinek)
  • How to inspire
  • How to be empathetic
  • How to give directions effectively
  • How to establish credibility
  • How and when to delegate
  • What kind of leader are you?
  • Great leaders think like each member of their team
  • Create a topic

 

3. Presentation/Discussion Homework (individual work)— away from the group

After their topic has been approved, students need to research their topic. They are welcome to create worksheets, a presentation, a game or activity that demonstrates the topic. The intention is for the leaders to be engaging, learning from one another. This isn’t about how much they can learn on the topic and spit it back out. They need to learn the topic, become the expert on the topic, and interact to teach it to the group. They want to encourage dialogue and feedback from the group.

The group needs to bring enough handouts, worksheets, activity materials for each person in the group, including the adviser.

 

4. Presentation day — 5-15 minute presentations per each member of the board

Set the schedule for the training by deciding the order of when each will present and when breaks will be given. Set boundaries about respecting each other’s presentation time.

Encourage leaders to ask questions, engage and participate. Soon they will ask that of their own team, so they need to lead by example.

 

5. What does a good leader look like? (group work) — 10 minutes

Using a dry erase board, chalkboard or poster board, the group needs to create a bulleted list of what a good leader is to them. It can be examples already discussed, items already learned through presentations or new items not brought up yet. Exhaust the list as much as possible, but leave space for the group to return to the list if there is something new to add. Try to make the list fluid by transferring over to a Google Doc or something similar so the group can continue to access it throughout the year.

 

6. What does a bad leader look like? (group work) — 10 minutes

Using a dry erase board, chalkboard or poster board, the group now needs to create a bulleted list of what a bad leader is to them. It can be examples already discussed, items already learned through presentations or new items not brought up yet. Exhaust the list as much as possible, but leave space for the group to return to the list if there is something new to add. Try to make the list fluid by transferring over to a Google Doc or something similar so the group can continue to access it throughout the year.

 

7. Let’s Get Personal Reflection (individual work) — 15 minutes

After gathering bullet points and getting educated, leaders need to reflect on their own personality and leadership style, and how they will influence the group. The good and bad should be addressed because both need to brought into the light to help individuals learn how to avoid common pitfalls before they happen. Acknowledge that weaknesses are natural and everyone has them. Using the worksheet Let’s Get Personal, have each group member complete it about their own influence on the group.

 

8. Let’s Get Personal Re-Group (group work) — 10 minutes

Discuss the characteristics brought up in step #7 as a whole. It is important to learn how each person can help one another using their leadership strengths. It is also important to address the weaknesses that each person has so that group members can help one another when a trigger is spotted throughout the year.