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Young Leaders Inspire Younger Leaders

 Student Leadership of Johns Creek Ambassadors Facilitate Leadership Training Seminar for Ocee Elementary School Leaders

Article by Akhila Yellapragada and Apurva Sharma 

Photography by Amanda Wile, Chattahoochee High School

Originally published in Johns Creek City Lifestyle

“What is the best way to teach and reinforce leadership ideals to young children?” This was the main question our fellow SLJC ambassadors pondered as we began to plan a three-hour leadership seminar for the third to fifth grade Ocee Elementary Student Leaders.  Student Leadership Johns Creek (SLJC), is a highly selective two-year program centered on training high-achieving high school students essential leadership skills. We are currently juniors at Chattahoochee High School. Being the primary leaders for the seminar, we were in charge of planning and supervising the event. 

 Our passion for working with young children and creating a positive impact in our community is what led us to take on the initiative to organize and direct the program. Along with our fellow SLJC ambassadors; Sneha Tallam, Gayatri Kumar, Niyomi Shah, Melissa Liu, Emily Cory, Medhini Anand, Samay Shah, Aditi Mohan, and Carly Yin; we brainstormed a variety of activities, with each one revolving around the five qualities of an effective leader: trustworthiness, analytical problem solver, diligent listener, articulate communicator, and influential team member. We even introduced the kids to the essentials of public impromptu speaking. 

  The children were put into random groups and rotated between stations. Each station consisted of an activity that was centered around a quality of leadership. Teamwork was taught by challenging students to untie themselves from a human knot. Communication was observed through a game of telephone. Trust within a team was practiced as students went through a blindfold course.  The kids got to practice public and impromptu speaking. Gavin Adams (3rd grade) said, “My favorite part was presenting in front of everyone” while Peyton Small (4th grade) learned that, “Whenever you are going to talk in public, you should take deep breaths.” The kids discussed methods for problem-solving by coming up with solutions to a list of scenarios. Lastly, the kids learned to listen through a dynamic group activity. 

 We were very honored to create this event and touched by the children’s enthusiasm. We would like to thank Ocee School Counselor, Ms. Renee Corley, for helping us coordinate the event. Ms. Sanders, the director of SLJC, our dedicated SLJC ambassadors, and finally, the families of the children for encouraging their kids to expand their horizons and become the future leaders of the next generation.  

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