Cultivating leadership skills in kids involves the development of self-esteem, which can occur when children receive positive reinforcement as they learn how to set boundaries and tackle life’s challenges. As MissionGrit.com notes, as children gain confidence, they learn how to communicate more effectively, get along well with others, think creatively, and inspire and guide others. In other words, they develop soft skills that support solid relationships—skills that, someday, potential employers will seek for their worker teams.
Wondering how to encourage the development of these skills? Here are some strategies that help.
Ways To Help Children Develop Their Leadership Skills
Penn State Extension shares strategies to use to build leadership skills for kids, including to model the types of behavior you want them to develop. Explain why you act the way you do. Also encourage children to consider a situation from someone else’s point of view and, even when they don’t agree with the other person, to respond to them respectfully.
Offer children's choices about activities give them opportunities to make their own decisions, which will help them as they learn how to think critically and solve problems. Give them tasks to accomplish and appropriately praise them. For example, Penn State notes that you could thank a child for volunteering to lead the clean-up effort in a classroom and share that it’s a big job to get everyone to do their part. Mission Grit picks up on the notion of volunteering because it gives children a chance to serve others, which is something that successful leaders do.
Another way to develop leadership skills for kids is to enroll them into quality camps that teach social leadership. This can happen through games, activities that require teamwork, and discussions. Because children are surrounded by others in their age group at camps, they can receive mentorship and support from their peers, which contributes to their growth.
Health.gov, meanwhile, shares how participation in sports can help to develop leadership qualities in children as it builds a sense of teamwork, self-control, empathy, and perseverance. It’s not surprising, then, that the U.S. government site notes how people who play sports in high school are more likely to graduate from a four-year college and enjoy success in their careers.
Horizon Education Centers Provides Leadership Opportunities
Ways in which Horizon helps to develop leadership skills for kids include the opportunity to vote for or participate in the Youth Advisory Council. This advisor serves as a voice for their peers at Horizon. They give feedback on program activities, lesson plans, field trips, and family nights while offering new suggestions. The position exists on a rotating basis to share the chance for kids to get involved and learn how to create an agenda, run a meeting, record minutes, and more.
Horizon also offers quality summer camps for children ages six through 12 as well as intramural sports leagues. All of these activities help kids to develop leadership skills that will serve them well through their school years and beyond.