Leadership is one of the most sought-after traits in a workplace or any other social setting. The National Association of Colleges and Employers gives a figure of 68.6% of employers who are looking for graduates with quality leadership skills. While on the other hand, most employers think only 33% of employees demonstrate leadership qualities. This statistic gives us all the more reason to ensure that high school students pick up this trait in their early years.
The art of leading others can encourage students to be better communicators, increase creativity, improve their network and become more efficient individuals. Teens can easily incorporate leadership activities into their schedules in many forms. Whether you choose to engage in team-building activities or volunteer at a local shelter home, we’ve got you covered with seven things to do that will boost your leadership skills.
Why Is Leadership Important For High Schoolers?
Young adults can develop many important qualities by engaging in leadership-related activities. It is essential that they put time and effort into these tasks as this will leave a strong impact on them for the future.
- Discipline: Discipline is a skill that can often be misunderstood and implied in a way that can have a negative impact on your productivity. Discipline in its best form aids you to become more efficient and acknowledge the tasks at hand. It also helps build good habits and break ineffective patterns.
- Mutual Respect: Students learn yet another important quality that will encourage them to develop better relationships. To respect another person’s opinions and views is of utmost priority to foster a healthy classroom, family, or work environment.
- Problem Solving and Critical Thinking Skills: When students engage in leadership activities, they are often forced to think out of the box and come up with creative solutions to solve the problem at hand. Putting effort into finding solutions can be helpful even when their academics are brought into the picture.
So if you are wondering how to introduce leadership and team-building activities to your high-school students, check out some great activities and projects that your students can undertake to inculcate these values.
List Of Leadership Activities
1. Genie’s Carpet
This is a simple classroom or home activity that you can make your students do without the help of many resources. All you will need is a large carpet to get started. Divide your students into four or five teams and ask them to stand on the carpet. The students may fold the carpet in half during each round while ensuring that all their team members still have their feet on the carpet. This is an excellent activity to develop communication and problem-solving skills.
2. Join a Volunteering Service
Students can organise a community clean-up drive, put together supplies for an elderly care home, volunteer at a pet adoption centre, or gauge attention towards a cause through social media or other online forums. With plenty of online as well as offline volunteering opportunities available, high school students can choose to engage in any one of these activities using their skills. Students can learn responsibility and the importance of collaboration and inclusivity to make a difference.
3. Jigsaw Puzzles
Jigsaw puzzles have always been something that sparked joy in us as kids. As there is no lack of jigsaw puzzles curated for a young adult demographic in the market, it doesn’t hurt to use this fun game to aid in building our leadership skills. Puzzles are the way to go if you want to introduce your students to activities that will stimulate their minds, improve their critical thinking, and boost their social skills.
4. Think Like Your Role Model
This is an activity that can be conducted in class that will prompt students to research and compile facts and information on their role models. Students can be asked to find out what kind of approach had been taken by their role models for leadership and discuss their findings with the other students in class. This will help them analyse patterns and methods used by some of these people and help them improve their listening and communication skills with their peers.
5. Engage in School Student Council and Sports Activities
One of the best ways to learn leadership would be to actively get involved in school activities such as those held by the student council or a sports team. There are many roles that students can fulfil in these areas, each helping them learn important lessons of work ethic passion, conflict resolution, risk-taking, and so on. Students can also choose to join or start clubs of their interest, such as a literature club or an outdoor activities club.
6. Apply for an Internship
Although applying for an internship may not be the first thing on your mind, internships can teach you volumes about leadership, time management, and productive routines that you can incorporate into your personal values. Students can learn how to work with a team of people and observe people who take up leadership roles in such institutions. These opportunities will also be a great addition to your future college applications.
7. War Zone
Separate your students into groups and gather them in an open space( like a park or a school playground). The students should be tasked to cross a designated area where an opponent team will prepare to catch them from within that zone. Students will learn how to collaborate and brainstorm ideas to deceive/capture their rivals. This activity will provide an important premise to teach students the benefits of group effort and improve decision-making.
As said by Rosalynn Carter, “A leader takes people where they want to go. A great leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go, but ought to be.”
Successful and effective leaderships skills take patience to cultivate in oneself. Regularly participating in activities such as the ones mentioned above or more within your school or community will create a drastic difference in your communication, listening, and understanding methods and help you become a good leader. A leader can be both authoritative as well as collaborative, and discovering what kind of a leader you want to be is crucial to facing your future endeavours.