After hearing Chris Hadfield speak at the Canadian Student Leadership Conference in Edmonton (CSLC 2018) I was inspired to share his children’s book The Darkest Dark with my Leadership class. It went great – below is the lesson plan and assignment we used.
I began by reading the book to the class elementary school style with me holding the book up front and making sure they see the pictures. After the page that says “Dreams that actually can come true” I then show them this You Tube video of Chris Hadfield singing Space Oddity on the International Space Station.
Some of the students knew who Chris was in the story but some didn’t put it together until I showed the video. Then I read the last two pages “About Chris Hadfield” and “A Message From Chris” to the class.
When we were finished I had them get in partners and they had 2 minutes to talk about what some of the big leadership ideas were that jumped out at them. In a smaller class I would ask them each to share one thing their partner said that stood out to them. In a bigger class I might just choose a few students to report to the class. I then share the attached assignment with them which invites them to take action on one of their dreams this week. Hope this is a help with your Student Leaders.
Our Gr. 10 Leadership students always complete an assignment based on the fantastic book Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt. Start by reading them the story elementary school style. (one time we tried showing the pages by powerpoint but reading straight from the book went way better) Be sure to give it a very dramatic reading. 🙂 Then have students get in partners. Have them first share one big leadership idea that jumped out to them from the book. Invite some students to share with the class or group what their partner’s big idea was. Then have the partners talk about one thing they could do in the next few days to become a better leader that they learned or were reminded of from Scaredy Squirrel.
Attached is the assignment we hand out. It is a joint effort from Michelle Lowey and myself. The quality of assignments we have gotten back have been great. Enjoy
Looking for an assignment you can use to build on a keynote or guest speaker presentation. Try this one attached above. Phil Boyte spoke at our school. His presentation was excellent and I highly recommend him. His website:
The day after his session we spent time debriefing what stood out to them. Then the class received this assignment so they could take the next step. What I like most is challenging them to apply a concept in their life and then report back. The quality of what I get back has been very good. You can adapt this assignment to any keynote or guest speaker. Good luck!
Tim Elmore from Growing Leaders shared this video and 3 reasons why Generation Z is succeeding where previous generations may have struggled.
1. They can see what we often cannot envision.
2. They will attempt what we often believe is illogical.
3. They can collaborate when we often only feel conflict
A great TED video to share with young leaders – click the URL link above to view
The stress that a Student Leadership advisor feels can be pretty intense right before a big student project, activity, pep rally etc. Quality project planning sheets can ease that stress. Attached are the planning sheets we use at Centennial for all our projects. We print them off on green paper and call them green sheets. I suggest you pick a color other than white so they stand out and everyone knows what they are talking about. Once you open the document here are some tips you may find helpful:
- students are expected to have their green sheets with them each class – everyone in the group needs their own copy in case someone is missing on a certain day
- when I work with a group first thing I require is they have their green sheets out and ready to take notes
- this is a working document – the first 4 pages should not be super neat – ideas change and plans do too – cross stuff out, add other good ideas
- the brainstorming page is for writing all good ideas down – it is also the place to put important info that doesn’t fit anywhere else
- there are lists of Must Do, Should Do, and Could Do – this is a challenge for students to figure out what the difference is between each – they often spend most of their time in the Could zone instead of working on the Musts
- Final project review form – students fill out these reflective questions about their project – then as a group they meet with me for an interview about how it all went – a big part of my evaluation is based on this interview
- Last page is to be filed – this is a message to future students – let them know what works and doesn’t work for next time
Thanks to the all-star advisors and programs who through the years have shared their planning ideas with me. My green sheets are a compilation of many ideas I have seen.
If you have any ideas or suggestions please let me know.
Turns out my Student Leaders are very optimistic about the world and they love to draw on the white board. Here is how it worked.
First I showed the Lost Generation clip from YouTube. It starts off seeming like a very negative video but changes half way through to be very positive. The link is above. I then invited the class to write down as many things as they could that are great about the world right now or they see as positive for the future.
Then they were encouraged to come up to the whiteboard and write everything positive down they thought was important. When that was done they could come up and show what they liked that other people wrote by circling it or putting stars beside etc. What we got as you can see from the picture above was a very messy, awesome declaration of optimism by my class. They kept talking about all the things they had written down well into the rest of the class.
Give it a try! Now I am going to go outside and positively enjoy the 30C weather we rarely get in Calgary this time of year!