LEADER IN ME

Supporting The Leader in Me Initiative

We are often asked how parents can support their school’s leadership initiative. Each time we are asked we give the same answer “Use the 7 Habits language at home.”

As the school year unfolds, the children are learning the language and meaning of the 7 Habits. By hearing the same language at home and at school, you send the children a strong message of what you believe is important and that we are all on the same team—the team that wants to help succeed. When parents and schools support one another, the sky is the limit!

Below is a summary of each of the habits:

Habit 1: Be Proactive (You’re in Charge)

Habit 2: Begin With the End in Mind (Have a Plan)

Habit 3: Put First Things First (Work First, Then Play)

Habit 4: Think Win-Win (Everyone Can Win)

Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood ( Listen Before You Talk)

Habit 6: Synergize (Together Is Better)

Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw (Balance Feels Best)

The Importance of Goals

Research has shown that the simple act of writing a goal greatly increases the chances of accomplishing the goal. If the goal is broken down into action steps and the action steps are tracked, goals have an even greater percentage of success.

At school, your child may write his or her academic and personal goals in a Leadership Notebook. You will gain a lot of information on how your child is doing if you ask your child to tell you about his or her goals. The goals chosen are meaningful to your child so be sure to practice Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.

The Leadership Notebook idea can also be used in your home. Create goals such as reading together, eating dinner at the table, or doing an activity together. Involve everyone in the family in choosing a meaningful goal and action steps. Post the goal and the action steps in a visible place and be sure to track and celebrate progress!

Organizational Skills

Imagine a school morning where everyone knows what to do and is ready on time. Sound too good to be true? Well, it’s possible! Organization is a skill learned over time. By teaching organization at home, your child will learn this very important skill.

Use the first three habits as a learning tool for you and your child:

Habit 1: Be Proactive

Habit 1 is about initiative and responsibility. Help your child determine what he or she will need for the next day. To start, writing a list may be helpful. Next, have your child gather the non-perishable items and put them in his or her school bag.

Habit 2: Begin With the End in Mind

Habit 2 is about visualizing how you would like something to turn out before it happens. If a smooth morning is the goal, brainstorm with your child how that will look and feel like. Your child may actually have time to do something extra in the morning if he or she is organized and you will all have a happy start to the day.

Habit 3: Put First Things

Habit 3 means focusing on the task when there's something else you would rather be doing — the hardest part of all! Help your child learn how to avoid distractions by reminding him or her that, if they stick to it, all the fun things can come right after—with no guilt or nagging!

Once children know these habits, and how to apply them, they can start tackling more difficult tasks independently. They will begin to feel self-confident and proud when they're able to complete homework, chores, and other tasks by themselves. They're also sure to be pleased when they find they have some extra free time to do what they'd like to do.

Remember, it may take time to teach your child these skills. Sometimes, it will seem simpler just to do it for them. But remember, your child won't learn how to be independent and successful if you always do it for them. Using Habits 1-3 is a life skill that will benefit them their entire lives.