Tools For Learning

Inspiration for Parents & Educators

Girl Power and Parenting: Developing Leadership Qualities

on March 23, 2014

Super hero girl

If you are interested in Girl Power and developing leadership qualities in the young ladies in your life, this is your lucky day.  A must read is, 3 Next Steps for Developing Girls’ Leadership by Elena Aquilar focusing on student engagement and developing girls’ leadership qualities. The author so eloquently raises the pertinent questions exploring what leadership truly means to young girls.

Leadership is not just about a girl’s role but it’s all about the stance they take and the way they feel and the actions they take in that role. Girls, too, must be clear about their intrinsic value and their options. As a parent, especially, and as an educator, one of your most significant contributions to the world is to empower girls to lead happy and responsible lives. You can do this most effectively  by modeling and offering guidance that will build young girls’ confidence and self-esteem. It is important that you increase your own awareness of the “rules” you present and reinforce to them.

In her book Stand Up For Your Life, Cheryl Richardson, gives great and sound advice when she points out that instead of you, as a child, being trained to follow rules that may have crushed your spirit, imagine what your life would have been like if you had been taught these instead:

* Be informed
* Stick with it
* Stop apologizing when you’ve done nothing wrong
* Be courageous
* Think big
* Be ambitious
* Be enthusiastic
* Be proud of yourself
* Keep your expectations high
* Go for it!

Ms. Richardson states that her own life would have been different had she been raised with these types of rules. She notes that she would have spoken up in school when she knew the answer to a teacher’s question instead of feeling insecure to raise her hand. Cheryl also mentioned that she would have performed in the high school plays that captured her imagination rather than relegating herself to the audience while longing to be on stage.

Now is the time to give your kids, especially your girls, the opportunity to omit the “could have been” and the “should have been” thoughts from their minds. Give them a new set of rules to live by! You will have many opportunities during the day to implement and encourage these new rules. Explain them. Discuss them. Monitor and adjust them to your own experience and situation for maximum output and success. Integrate them into your young lady’s daily routine. Watch what happens! You’ll both feel empowered! You go girls!

Photo by Lance Neilson, cropped, and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic.

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