We invite you to take a “taste” of the program’s style by trying out a few micro activities. These activities will give you a sample of what the full Lead4Change Student Leadership Program offers you and your students.
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Lead4Change is for 6-12th grades in the US.
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Pick a defined period of time — the last school year, summer break, etc. Ask students to list key events and experiences in their life.
Examples can include victories achieved, challenges faced, fears overcome, stands taken and lessons learned.
Direct students to choose the experiences that have shaped them. It could be anything—achieving a goal, making a new friend, receiving an award, traveling with family, completing a project, joining a team, losing a championship or graduating to the next level.
Using the diagram below, invites students to place these events on their Lifeline in the order in which they happened.
Instruct students to put happy or good things above the line and sad or bad things below the line. They can place each event higher or lower to show how they felt about them at the time. Encourage students to place an experience that made them very happy higher on your Lifeline, while something that was sad should be placed lower.
Discuss the activity using the following questions:
For complete details on the full Lifeline activity, see Lead4Change Lesson 1, Activity 1
When working on a project, it is important to identify clear goals. In order to help students set goals, consider using the SMART Goal method. Using the steps below, have students work individually or in small groups to write one specific goal. It may be helpful to define the topic or event they can use for this exercise.
For complete details on the full Smart Goals activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 5, Activity 2 (12-Lesson Track)
For this activity, give each student a 3×5 index card. Invite students to think about the key events that have influenced who they are today and about the specific ways they can become even better tomorrow.
Read the three big questions below and instruct students to record their thoughts on their index cards.
Remind students that asking these questions will help them set big goals and make positive changes. Encourage students to keep their index card in an important place so they can refer to it often as they work to make changes in their lives.
For complete details on the full 3 Big Questions activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 1, Activity 3
For this activity, assign students to small groups to work together. Give each group an empty jar and some large rocks, smaller rocks, and sand or water. Ask groups to try to fit all of the items into their jars.
The objects that students put in first will determine how much of the other items they can put in afterward. If they put sand or water in first, nothing else will fit, but if they start with the big rocks and go down, they will be able to fit some of each item. Observe students as they work and coach them to try different solutions if they get stuck. Have extra supplies ready as needed.
After 10-15 minutes of work, conclude the activity with a discussion. Ask students to share what worked best and what didn’t. Share with students that the big rocks represent our most important tasks. If we manage our time so that we complete those important tasks first, then we will likely find time to complete our other tasks as well. The same is true for filling the jar, add big rocks first and all of the items will fit in the jar.
For this activity, invite students to think about a goal they would like to accomplish. Ask one or two students to share their goal with the class. Remind students that it is hard to accomplish a big goal if they try to do it alone.
Using the diagram below, invite students to write their goal in the center box. Then ask students to think about the people they will need to take with them in order to achieve that goal.
Close the activity by discussing the following questions:
For complete details on the full People Map activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 7, Activity 1 (12 Lesson Track) or Lesson 4, Activity 3 (6 Lesson Track)
Ask students to think of a time when they needed to convince someone to support a cause, to join them on a project or to back their stance on a topic. Invite one or students to share their example with the class. As students share, collect some techniques for persuasive communication on the board. These techniques may include using facts from research on a topic, appealing to an individual’s emotions or making a personal connection.
Next, invite students to use the example they thought of to compose a persuasive statement. Once students have completed their persuasive statements, they can share them with a partner or read them to the class to receive feedback. Ask students to identify the persuasive techniques used in each statement.
For complete details on the full Persuasive Writing activity, refer to Lesson 7, Activity 2 (12 Lesson Track)
Invite students to think of a product or project they are passionate about. Tell students they will write an elevator speech about their selection. An elevator speech is a short and to-the-point way to share an important message in less than one minute. The goal of their speech is to help others see their vision for the product or project they are sharing.
Share the following steps with students as they write their speeches:
For complete details on the full Elevator Speech activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 8, Activity 1 (12 Lesson Track) or Lesson 4, Activity 2 (6 Lesson Track)
Divide students into teams to complete this activity. Give students the following instructions and discussion questions for the activity.
1. Sit in a circle with your team and without using your hands, pass the pitcher all the way around the circle.
2. Now sit in a circle and try the activity again. This time, fill the pitcher with a substance selected by your teacher and pass it all the way around the circle without using your hands.
Read the following information about building trust and discuss it as a class.
Then divide the class into small groups and have students respond to the following questions as a team.
For complete details on the full Connection activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 2, Activity 1
Helping students resolve conflicts teaches them skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. And, thanks to the timeless lessons they teach, fairy tale read-alongs can help your class get a discussion on conflict resolution skills going.
Choose a beloved fairy tale to read as a class, like Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Little Red Riding Hood, or Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. As you read the story to your students, ask them the following questions:
Then, turn the discussion to recent conflicts students have had in their life. Invite several students to share about times when, like the fairy tale characters, felt conflict with another person. Ask them how they worked with that person to make the situation better, as well as any advice they have to share with the class.
For complete details on the full Conflict Resolution activity, refer to https://www.waterford.org/education/15-activities-for-teaching-casel-core-competencies/
Grounding techniques are a stress management exercise used to orient someone in the present when they’re emotionally overwhelmed.
By focusing on their senses instead of their thoughts or feelings, grounding techniques can teach students how to calm down and manage their emotions when they are upset. Teach grounding techniques as a class and help students practice them when they feel stressed.
Here are a few grounding techniques for you to try out with your students:
Humans are great at remembering the negative. Not so much, however, when it comes to recalling the positive. Being grateful helps us keep this balance in check. This is why daily gratitude is a great daily practice to incorporate into your classroom.
There’s no “right” way to practice gratitude, however, you may like to set aside the last five minutes of class for students to write down what they are thankful for, briefly share them with a partner, or silently think them to themselves.
Another way to practice gratitude is to have students write things they are thankful for on small pieces of paper. Collect the papers and place them in a large jar in the classroom. When students are struggling with negativity, they can draw a gratitude item from the jar and read it aloud to share with the class. Allow the class to discuss why they are thankful for the item shared.
For complete details on the full Gratitude activity, refer to https://www.ef.com/wwen/blog/teacherzone/daily-mindfulness-for-students-6-activities/
Reflective writing not only helps students develop self-awareness but empathy and compassion, too. You can start each day in your class with this practice.
Give students five to ten minutes to write about a prompt that encourages self-reflection. By practicing reflective writing every day, this can help students learn to consider their thoughts and feelings in a self-aware way.
Here are a few prompts that encourage self-analysis:
For complete details on the full Reflection activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 8, Activity 3 )12 Lesson Track) or https://www.waterford.org/education/15-activities-for-teaching-casel-core-competencies
Invite students to think about an issue facing their school or community. Share some ideas with the class such as advocacy, awareness, communication, human connections, etc.
Place students in small groups and invite them to select an issue and take some time to learn about how this issue specifically impacts their school, community and/or world. Students may use the Internet to explore each issue and collect information as they complete the chart below.
For complete details on the full Research the Issues activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 3, Activity 1 (12 Lesson Track) or Lesson 2, Activity 2 (6 Lesson Track)
The next time you assign a project, ask students to first think about the tasks that are needed to complete the project. If it is a group project, also have students think about who will perform those tasks and what unique skills each person can offer to the group. Instruct students to work with their team and create a list of tasks to complete.
In the first column, as a group, students should list all of the tasks, activities, and ‘parts’ of the project they need to accomplish.
Students can then use a calendar to work backwards from the project due date to create deadlines for individual tasks and the starting step.
Have groups refer to the tasks they recorded and discuss what role each team member will fill to complete the team’s action plan. Give students the chart below to define and explain each role.
Encourage students to keep their action plan somewhere important so they can refer to it often to stay focused throughout the project.
For complete details on the full Action Plan activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 6, Activity 1 (12-Lesson Track) or Lesson 4, Activity 1 (6 Lesson Track)
Even the best-made plans will have hurdles or obstacles. Frequently, people get stuck on an issue when there may be ways to overcome the obstacle.
When you assign a project to students, take time at the beginning and allow students to predict a few of the action plan hurdles that may arise as they work. By anticipating a few obstacles, students will be better equipped to handle them if they do occur.
In the table below, have students write down predicted obstacles and how they plan to address them.
For complete details on the full Anticipating Hurdles activity, refer to Lead4Change Lesson 6, Activity 1 (12-Lesson Track) or Lesson 4, Activity 1 (6 Lesson Track)
The Lead4Change curriculum is perfect for any learning environment – virtual, hybrid or in person. The lessons provide a detailed plan for integrating leadership training and community service into 6-12 grade learning. We believe you and your students deserve the best education solutions that are proven, easy and FREE. REGISTER now to get started.
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