Giving Compass' Take:

• Giving students an opportunity to lead and develop their passions at school benefits the student and the school community. Michael Niehoff explains how to achieve this. 

• How can teachers and administrators make more room for students to make their mark on their school? What are the long-term advantages of giving students opportunities for leadership? 

• Learn about the advantages of meeting students on their own cultural turf

Students can gain valuable career and life skills as leaders, all while having a significant impact on their peers, their school and their community. Here are six categories that provide outlines and specific examples for how student leaders can create and implement avenues for all students to experience a positive school environment and a new, deeper level of learning:

1. Service-Based Learning
We’ve known for a long time the benefits of students getting involved in service-based learning opportunities. They have often participated in order to meet college admission goals, school graduation requirements, student club expectations and more. Educators have embraced it knowing that it transforms the learner. It’s a great thing to get students to volunteer and perform service activities–but it’s even better when students get one another to do it as well.

2. Social-Emotional Learning
Adults have long worked to lead positive school culture through various character education programs. But again, they are more successful when students create and lead the implementation.

3. Noontime Activities
These were an unexpected gold mine of school culture building that initially were underestimated by both students and yours truly. They began as a means of me establishing a baseline leadership assignment that required a team of students to organize, collaborate and produce an event on a more immediate and rudimentary scale. After all, the audiences were captive to some degree in that students had to remain on campus during lunch (except for seniors), and were often looking for things to do.

Read the full article about letting students lead by Michael Niehoff at Getting Smart.