Lifeskill of the Month Newsletter

November: Initiative

Initiative is...

To do something of one's own free will because it needs to be done.
Kid President's Pep Talk to Teachers and Students!

A note on initiative.

Initiative is one of the most inward driven lifeskills. It can not be forced from the outside; it must be formulated, nurtured and put into action from within. Initiative is sparked by an inner voice that propels us not just to pay attention, but to act. The lifeskill of initiative is the difference between wishing for something to be better and making it a reality. The best way we can teach initiative to our students is to model it, day in and day out for them.

Signs a student is showing initiative...

  • Ask for extra help if needed.
  • Contribute to class discussion.
  • Volunteer to do task that are important, but uninteresting.
  • Bring in materials or research about a topic currently being studied.
  • Stand up for students who aren't being treated fairly.

Classroom Inquiries that Encourage Initiative

  • Read biographies of famous inventors, artists and scientists
  • Write a letter or thank you note to someone who has made a difference in your life
  • Research a topic or problem that you see and brainstorm an action plan
  • Develop an invention to address a need to see in your life

Literature Connection: Initiative

  • The Elves and the Shoemaker, by Brothers Grimm
  • Flossie and the Fox, by Patricia McKissack
  • Little Toot, by Hardie Gramatky
  • The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade, by Justin Roberts
  • All in a Day, by Cynthia Rylant
  • The Smile that Went Around the World, by Patrice Karst