One thing teachers are tasked with doing is molding young minds to become the leaders of tomorrow. These prompts for writing about leadership are designed to make your students think about not only what leadership means, but also what it means to be a community member and friend.
Prompt 1: When a pack of wolves travel, the older and sicker wolves walk in front. They set the pace for the walk. The next group of wolves are the strongest. They are there to protect the front group from an attack. The middle group is protected because directly behind them are more strong wolves.The absolute last wolf is the leader. Why do you think the leader is the last wolf, rather than the first one?
Prompt 2: Everyone of us has succumbed to peer pressure at one time or another in our lives. Write about a time when you did something wrong because you felt pressured to do it. Do you consider the person who convinced you to do this wrong thing a leader, even if he or she led you in a bad way?
Prompt 3: Do you think it is more important to be popular or respected by your peers? If you chose popular, do you think that will change when you become an adult?
Prompt 4: Why is it so important to some kids to be popular in Middle School?
Prompt 5: Someone in your class has been bullying you (calling you names, shoving you against lockers, knocking your books out of your hand,) to the point where you know you have to do something about it. How would you handle it, without resorting to violence or retaliation through something like cyberbullying?
Prompt 6: Have you ever been put in a position of leadership? How did you do? Write an essay telling about your experience.
Prompt 7: Someone in your class throws a crumpled up paper at the teacher when her back is turned. No one admits to doing it, so the teacher decides that one half of the class (the side of the room from where the paper obviously was thrown) must come in during recess as punishment. You lucked out since you are in the half of the class that does NOT have to miss recess. Do you think the punishment is fair? If yes, would you think it was fair if you sat on the other side of the classroom?
Prompt 8: Your best friend starts making fun of the new kid in school because her clothes are somewhat old fashioned and out of style. What do you do or say to your friend? Would you stand up and publicly say something or would you wait until you were alone with your friend and confront her? Or would you say nothing for fear of losing her friendship? Choose an answer and write an essay defending why you would handle the situation that particular way.
Prompt 9: You’re in a store with your friend when you see him steal a candy bar and some gum. You think he might get caught and don’t want to get in trouble just by being with him. What do you do?
Prompt 10: A leader is defined as a person who guides or directs other people. He is a person who influences people. Yet many celebrities and music makers influence people in ways that are not good and which can actually be harmful. Are they still leaders? Write an essay on what you think the definition of a leader should be.
Prompt 11: You may have heard the expression, “he’s a born leader.” Do you think that’s true? Is someone a born leader or can he be taught to be a leader? If you think it’s a skill which can be taught, what types of things can a person do to learn leadership skills? Write an essay giving several examples.
Prompt 12: Describe what it takes for a person to earn your respect. We all admire someone for their leadership skills. It might be a teacher, friend or family member. Pick one person whom you admire for their leadership skills and write about the traits that make them special and how they have influenced you in some way.
Prompt 13: You have been chosen to represent your school at an international conventions for students to be held in Paris, France. Write a letter to the editor of your local paper explaining the prestigious award and what you will be discussing with the other students.
Prompt 14: Write a letter to someone in your past that really made a difference in your life. Describe a specific experience that you remember vividly. Thank this person for taking the time to care about you.
Prompt 15: There are several qualities one must have to become a great leader. Some of those include the ability to inspire, the ability to delegate, commitment, and confidence. Which of these qualities do you think is the most important one for a leader? Write an essay explaining why you chose that one quality.
Prompt 16: Your town hospital is seeking volunteers. Your friend wants to be a volunteer and asks you to write a letter to the Hospital Volunteer Coordinator recommending her for the volunteer job. Write this letter, explaining why your friend is an excellent candidate to be a volunteer.
Prompt 17: American author Kenneth Blanchard has said, “The key to successful leadership is influence, not authority.” Give an example of this in your own life by writing about a time you showed leadership by using your influence.
Prompt 18: There is a proverb which states, Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Can you think of an example where someone in power became too powerful; so much so that they ended up being corrupt? Write about it.
Prompt 19: A home in the community has burned. Tell how you would help the family recover from the loss.