Start a Conversation with your students

Scott Graham presents valuable leadership and anti-bullying strategies that can be used in the classroom. For the information to have an impact, teachers must review the strategies and have discussions with their students after the presentation. Here are the taking points. 


When people think of leaders they think of presidents, prime ministers, coaches, and CEO’s of big companies. These are jobs. Just because you have the job doesn’t mean you are a good leader.

The Right Leadership Definition:

  • Leaders look for ways of helping others – they are selfless not selfish
  • Leaders try their best in every situation
  • Leaders grow in areas where they are week

QUESTION: Why doesn’t everyone choose to be a leader?

Turning the Negative into a Positive

Leaders find the positive in negative situations and use these life challenges as tools. They pull from their experiences so they can teach others what they have learned from the experience.

QUESTION: How did the girl with the facial deformity turn her cranial facial difference into a positive? What were her potential choices?

QUESTION: Can you thank of any negative life situations? How can you take these moments and turn the into tools that can help others?

The Characteristics of a Leader

Leaders realize the importance of developing their inner core or defining their COOL. If you don’t intentionally develop your values and leadership traits others will gladly do it for you.

QUESTION: What external influences could effect your “COOL”? i.e. the internet, television, the news, your friends, video games etc.

Some Leadership Characteristics

  • Respect – how you demononstate respect reflects your inner core level
  • Responsibility – Doing what you say you are going to do sets you apart from others. You stand out in a crowd.
  • Integrity – walk your talk – your words match your actions
  • Taking initiative – you take action before being asked. You see what needs to be done and you do it.
  • Trust – is the foundation of leadership. Without trust you have no influence.

“Leadership is influence. Nothing more and nothing less.” – John Maxwell

Discussion: Discuss with your class what other characteristics make up a leader.

Self Talk

We all have an inner voice. When we make a mistake or don’t perform our best well can use phrases like: “I can’t believe I did that.” “I’m so dumb.” “I’m such a loser.” to name a few. We need to catch ourselves making the negative statements and turn them into positive phrases. Instead of saying “I’m so dumb,” you can focus on what you can learn from the moment, so you can perform better next time.

Question: How does negative self talk influence your leadership potential? What can you do to change your negative self talk?

Leadership Styles

You don’t need to take control of a group, be the loudest person in the room or most charismatic or popular. Leaders come in all shapes and sizes and volumes. You can influence others by simply being yourself, and teaching by example. You can teach and influence others and not say a single word. Act with integrity and develop trust and people will learn from watching how you react to situations.

Question: Name different leadership styles?

Question: How can you incorporate your passions into your leadership style?

Question: Name some leaders you know and give reasons why you believe they are good leaders? 

leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way

John Maxwell

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