Whether or not you’re a “born-leader”, you can improve your leadership skills by working on them – just like any other skill or ability! It’s okay if you aren’t familiar with leadership games and leadership activities for teenagers yet, that’s why we’re here for. We’ll go over a series of different leadership activities, all of which can be adapted and tailored to fit your group. None of the rules for these activities are written in stone, so get creative with your leadership activities for teens, and make something that will suit your group’s and leader’s needs.
Practicing leadership is an on-going process. Even great leaders weren’t all born that way, it takes time to learn leadership and to improve, and everyone can improve. If you’re starting off with a lack of leadership skills, or are a naturally good leader, these leadership activities for teenagers will help you improve.
What about leadership games for teens?
Not all leadership activities need to be games, but leadership games for teens are a great way to learn, build a team, get to know everyone, and demonstrate leadership when needed. There’s a belief that being a leader is a binary thing, either you’re a natural-born leader or you will never be able to lead people, but that’s not true. You can learn leadership, you can improve your leadership skills over time, and even if you’re a “follower” by nature, you can grow into the role of a leader with effort.
Leadership Game: Magic Carpet
One person is designated as the “genie” in this activity, this will be the person who is leading the activity. Everybody else stands on a tarp or a blanket that is large enough for everyone to have their own space, so not everybody is squished onto it. The goal is to flip the “magic carpet” over. You can play with the genie being the only person who is allowed to speak during the activity, and they have to direct everyone else on how to move in order to successfully and strategically flip over the tarp/rug. Alternatively, you can play without anyone in the “genie” role, where it’s just a free for all, to see who steps up as the leader in the group and how everyone works together to make it happen without a clearly defined leadership-role.
Minefield Is a Great Leadership Activity for Teenagers
Minefield is a game where one person puts on a blindfold, and another person has to direct them around an obstacle course of sorts. It could be chairs in the way, other objects on the floor, something they have to duck under, and more. The leader, the person who isn’t wearing the blindfold, is responsible for directing the other person around the obstacles so they can get from point A to point B.
To make it more challenging, and applicable for a group, there can be a handful of leaders and just one person in a blindfold, or multiple people blindfolded who each listen to one leader, or to a series of leaders, as they are paired up in groups.
Finally, another way to do the minefield leadership activity is by having a group of leaders, one person blindfolded, and each leader can only speak one word at a time, so the leaders need to work together and think ahead about how to transmit their message to the person who needs to avoid obstacles. This can help teach effective and concise communication, and working together for a common goal.
A Leadership Coat of Arms
Here’s an activity recommended by SessionLab that calls for self-reflection and creativity. Everyone starts with a template for the outline of a coat of arms, it can be the shape of a shield for example, or you can start with a blank canvas. On their page, they must design a coat of arms that represents their leadership styles and philosophies. You can divide the sheild into quadrants and do a series of different images that come together, or just have a single image with multiple elements.
The more broad you leave the instructions ,them ore diverse the submissions will be. After everyone has designed their leadership cost of arms, it’s time to shaer them as a group and to discuss why each item was on it. Part of this activitiy has to do with creativity and reflection, but it’s also a good chance to listen and learn from the others in the group, and what makes them tick in terms of leadership, which can be just as beneficial for honing your own style as the reflection and drawing. Ask if any of the teenage leaders in the group would change their coat of arms after seeing what everyone else came up with.
High School Electives for Gaining Leadership Skills
There are a number of high school electives that can help improve your leadership abilities, in fact most elective courses will offer some opportunity for one to step up and take on a leadership role at one time or another.
It’s not just about using the structured leadership activity format, it’s about taking on leadership challenges on a day to day basis, so take a look at the electives that are available to you and see if any of them offer opportunities for team work, group projects, and so on. This is a chance for you to naturally step up and fill in the role of a leader, to solve problems if someone else wants to be a leader, and to co-ordinate with your team towards a common goal. Also, elective classes are ones where (For the most part) everybody has chosen to be there, and wants to be there, so it’s a good chance to meet some like-minded people, too.
Why Use Leadership Team Building Activities?
In order for a team to work well together, there needs to be a certain rapport. Not everyone has to be best friends or spending time together outside of work, but a certain understanding of one another goes a long way. Knowing each other’s quirks, personality traits, how people like to be spoken to and respond best to, and similar things are crucial in building a team that will function well, and a great leader can recognize these things and lead accordingly.
Just jumping right in and working together is another way to forge teams, but it can go catastrophically wrong at the blink of an eye if you aren’t careful. Diligent and focused leadership team building activities can help to break the ice, and can get everyone more comfortable around each other a lot more quickly than trying to navigate work, the project itself and its demands, while simultaneously dealing with inter-personal things. This is why team building activities for teenagers are important.
More Leadership Activities for Teenagers?
Hopefully some of these activities are a good fit for your needs, but if you’re looking for ideas for additional leadership activities for teenagers, make sure you let us know. Tell us about your group, tell us what you’re hoping to achieve, and we’ll come up with some unique ideas tailored to your group – just reach out, we’re happy to help!