"Immediate necessity makes many things convenient, which if continued would grow into oppressions. Expedience and right are different things."--Jefferson

Friday, March 8, 2013

As youth get older...

It is both exciting and scary as the youth get older and seek to take more ownership in the group as they stretch their growing wings of leadership.  This is what we want, right?

Yet, it can be a little scary for a few reasons:
-less control--when you turn something over to someone else, it will look different
-less predictability--youth and new mentors might not know yet how to use the time, and you might have to deal with unexpected "over" and "under" time in class.
-your youth might "fail" in a public setting :).  Ouch :).

The safe environment that should be present in each Vanguard Youth group is an ideal environment for people to practice leadership and safely "fail."  They will learn from their mistakes and they will bring new ideas and perspectives.  If all are following the Spirit, the Spirit will orchestrate the class in unexpected, yet transformational ways.

As the youth begin to step into increasingly more responsible roles in Vanguard, one resource the adult leaders can use to help them understand their new role is the "shadow leadership" method of the Boy Scouts of America.  This is ideally a technique where the youth stands in the front of the group as a physical leader, while the adult watches, supports, and then mentors the youth before and after, giving suggstions and ideas and support.

As you start the new year and have youth, I feel that for it to be a true leadership education academy, you must solicit their help and input in what to include in the year.  (See post on "Planning a new year")

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