Josh walked into the classroom, came right up to me (he is 6’5” and at least 275 lbs) and said “We are doing the Green Eggs & Ham challenge, right?!” You bet Josh.
The previous week I read the class Green Eggs & Ham. I then challenged them to try something new during the next week. It could be life changing or something small. They were going to report to the class in a week. Josh was ready!!!
Here are some of the student reports to the class:
“I tried seafood for the first time, thumbs up to sushi but thumbs down to shrimp.”
“I decided to actually get up when my alarm rang. Did it 3 out of 5 school days.”
“I’m kind of shy but I invited 3 of my friends to go to the mall with me. I usually am never the one to invite others. It was fun. I will do it again.”
“I reconnected with a friend I haven’t seen very much this year. We talked for a while and made plans to get together at Stampede.”
“I drove by myself for the first time. I have had my license for 1 year but have been too nervous to go by myself. I went to the Tim Horton’s drive through.” (I thought that sounded very patriotic)
What about Josh? “I tried an orange for the very first time. Guess what, I don’t like them. But now I know!”
This is one of my favorite Leadership lessons. You never know what kids will share. Everyone else is eager to hear about their classmates’ challenge. Only do this lesson once you have created a good community feeling. Don’t start the semester with it. Below you will find my full Green Eggs & Ham lesson plan.
This will be my final post for this school year. Looking for a speaker or presenter at your school or conference next year? Whole school assemblies, retreats, workshops for students or staff, or conference presentations – I would love to be a part of your event. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy June and the rest of the summer everyone. I will be on my deck, at the cabin, and hiking. Spend lots of time in your happy places.
Green Eggs & Ham Lesson
Read class Green Eggs & Ham dramatically
Discuss with class what are leadership themes from the book
- Try new things
- Be persistent
- Offer different options
- If they come up with it discuss how Sam I Am is like leadership students and the character who eventually eats is like the school we are serving
- Discussion can go in lots of directions
Green Eggs & Ham Challenge
Have each student quietly write down their plan for the following:
“Write down something new that you will try in the next week. It can be something you think you don’t like but aren’t sure or maybe something totally new.”
Then have them go with their Green Eggs & Ham buddy. They tell each other what their plan is for the next week. Ask questions about why they chose that. Then they remind each other to do it.
Talk about how doing something new like drinking eggnog won’t change their world. But developing the mindset of trying new things or revisiting things you didn’t like in the past is a great way to live.
Wrap up with story of how book was written. Dr. Seuss was challenged to see if he could write a successful book with only 57 words. Eg. You can use the word fox as many times as you want but it only counts as one of the 57 words.
Dr. Seuss was open to the challenge – ready to try something new – the result was a timeless book. One week later in class have each student report what they did and how it went.