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The Importance of Leadership in the Adult Ed Classroom

Posted by on December 4th, 2018

Creating new leaders can start in the classroom. Leadership skills may seem innate, but there are ways to cultivate leadership qualities in any student by employing the strategies and skills in their learning. This doesn’t only pertain to children as they go through school; in fact, the adult ed classroom is still a place to foster leadership. Teachers can equip their students to bring leadership skills beyond their schooling and into their professional career tracks.  

Teachers need to activate these leadership skills in the classroom.  Once they have identified the qualities and skills, teachers then need to reinforce them through classroom activities, assignments, projects and presentations.  

What are the elements of high quality leadership?  The following are the traits and skills teachers can help their students identify and practice in conjunction with their learning of specific subjects:

  • Honesty/Integrity – This includes the importance of doing the right thing, even when no one is looking.  This creates a trustworthiness that allows others to look at them as a leader and know they are in good hands.
  • Communication – One of the most essential elements for any successful leader is being able to effectively communicate.  Communication should be strong, clear, and constant, allowing everyone to understand what needs to be done.
  • Delegation – The strongest leaders are able to recognize and identify the strengths within their team and then empower them to complete tasks. This is a way to share the workload, as well as create a system of responsibilities that everyone under the leader shares.  
  • Optimism/Positive Attitude – People are not only drawn to leaders with positive attitudes because it creates a pleasant work environment, but it also fosters inspiration that everyone can succeed. Leaders who seek people with similar attitudes will build a team that is encouraged to do their best and overcome challenges together.  
  • Confident – People look to leaders for a sense of strength, calmness, and belief they can accomplish the tasks at hand. That’s why imbuing others with a sense of confidence starts with the leader’s own confidence. If they believe that their goals can be accomplished, they can lead others to feel the same and success will be within reach.
  • Decisive – Making decisions is a constant part of a leader’s duty. However, making quick, strong decisions can be the most difficult aspect of any role. Having a leader who is willing to make decisions and see them through is a crucial component of leadership.  

Teachers can share these qualities with their class and then as they make their way through their work, can be reminded of which skills they are empowering as they go. Understanding what these qualities mean for the individual and how they can practice each one, will remind them the importance of leadership as well and help them become great leaders in their own right.  

 

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