Tap to Read ➤

Teaching Leadership Skills to Students

Tulika Nair Mar 12, 2019
It is very rare to have classes that instill qualities like leadership, patience, hard work, etc. But, it is important for students to learn these skills and use them to make strong headways in their professional and personal lives.
"Leaders are made, they are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile."
Vince Lombardi, national hero and erstwhile coach of the Green Bay Packers in the 1960s made this statement negating the age-old adage of leaders are born and not made. Most people often live under the assumption that leadership is a skill that we inherit and if you do not possess the trait, then you are meant to be a follower.
Well, there are few qualities that people are born with, an easy charm, an ability to get people to listen to them, a genuine likability, but more often than not leadership is something that is developed over the years, learned from different experiences.
While you may have nascent leadership skills, if not nurtured, they may remain of no use. Which is why it is important to develop these skills in students. Teaching leadership skills to students is extremely important to give way to a generation that has every ability and capability that it needs in order to rule the world.

How You can Teach Leadership Skills

As a teacher responsible for giving your students the necessary skills for them to be successful in life, it is important that other than different subjects, you also help them acquire some necessary skills, which includes leadership.
It is important that your student understands what makes a good leader and how one should lead. Also having leadership skills can often improve their confidence in oneself.
The different activities that you can get them to participate can mimic real life situations which can help them understand other important aspects like team building and proper planning and also learn what the qualities of a good leader are. There are many different activities that can be used in order to teach students more about skills like leadership.

Assign Projects

A simple way of teaching students more about leadership is to divide them into groups and give them different projects to work on. For every student to understand the concept of leadership, it is important that you ensure that the project is a long term one.
It is important for you to assign roles to every student in the group. Ensure that these roles are shifted around so that at least once in the course of the project, every student dons the hat of the team leader.
At the start of the project, hand out assessment sheets to the students to judge how they performed in different roles on a weekly basis.
Also hand out sheets that explain the different roles to the students like listening, planning, dividing work, team management, creative thinking and problem solving. As the teacher, it will be your responsibility to observe the group to see who works well as a leader.

Theoretical Knowledge

While this may not seem like a great way of imparting leadership skills, it is important for students to understand what the society views as leadership and how this trait works. Explain to the students the different styles of leadership that exist.
From cooperative to democratic, autocratic, bureaucratic and even transformational, it is important that a student understands what forms of leadership exist in the world. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each style. Let them form their own opinions about how styles can be merged together.
Also, have a session in class where everyone can discuss the different qualities that are essential in a leader. You can also have a day in class where every student makes a presentation about a leader whom they truly admire.


In a world where technology is everyone's best friend, what better way can you come up with than to use technology and entertainment to impart leadership skills. As a class, you can sit and watch different movies and serials together where leadership skills have been honed and used.
Classic examples include the Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter series. In both these movies, the protagonist has been trained to realize that he can lead people against adversities. Watching movies and then discussing the same can be a great way of explaining a requisite trait to children.
Alternatively, use the Internet to download various interactive games and exercises where students are forced to dig deep inside themselves and use those nascent traits that they never knew they possessed.
These are just some of the methods that can be used in order to teach students more about leadership. As a teacher, you need to always emphasize on the fact that without a team, a leader would be lost and it is important to be a good listener and follower to be a good leader.
Teaching leadership skills to students is a task that needs patience and perseverance and also an understanding that the skills that have been imparted will bear fruit several years in the future.