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One Way You Can Help with My Next Book

Just prior to the Fall of 2019, Growing Leaders plans to release a new book on Generation Z. It will be different than other books published on this new population of 21st century kids. It will primarily focus on solutions. I want to add to the conversation with answers, not just more data. In fact, the book’s working title is:

Generation Z: What Do We Do Now?
How to Lead, Teach, Coach and Parent Today’s Youngest Population

What This Book Attempts to Accomplish

This book will encourage you to consider the challenges that Generation Z faces—challenges that are unlike past generations. How will we respond to the research? What are the best action steps we can take to equip them for the future? How do we lead from a place of belief and high expectations?

Over the course of this book, I’ll outline nine of the most significant challenges facing children, teens and young adults today, focusing on the issues brought on by:

  • Social media
  • Parenting styles
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Student performance cultures
  • On-demand lifestyles
  • Portable devices

Now here’s the good news that makes this book different. As I mentioned above, in addition to the data, we will offer research-based solutions to these challenges, answers you can utilize in your home, your classroom, your athletic field, your youth group or your workplace. The current realities today’s young people face have both an upside and a downside to them, many of which adults have not had to analyze or address in the past.

Our goal is to furnish the tools for you to offer life-giving leadership.

Could You Help with Ideas?

I’d like to crowd source the best ideas from people like you who lead students today. Could you send me any creative idea you’ve used at home, in a classroom, athletic field, or a workplace that have engaged students and equipped them to grow?

  • How have you helped them take appropriate risks?
  • How have you liberated them from their phones?
  • How have you enabled them to become resourceful?
  • How have you inspired them to gain experience?
  • How have you taught them and engaged them?
  • How have you equipped them to focus on top priorities?
  • How have you empowered them to take ownership of their growth?

You can comment below, tweet, or post on Facebook any ideas—and if I use them, I’ll cite you as a source for the book. I am very excited about this helpful resource involving the best minds around the world…like yours.

– Tim


Order Now: Marching Off the Map
Inspire Students to Navigate a Brand New World

Leading today’s students often feels like being in a new country with old maps that don’t work. Understanding and connecting with the generation in this land is often times frustrating and draining. We need new strategies on how to march off our old maps and create new ones.

From decades of research and hands-on experience, Dr. Tim Elmore and Andrew McPeak collate their conclusions into one resource that helps adults:

  • Inspire students to own their education and their future
  • Lead students from an attitude of apathy to one of passion through metacognition
  • Enable students to push back from the constant digital distractions and practice mindfulness
  • Raise kids who make healthy progress, both emotionally and mentally, through their teenage years
  • Give students the tools to handle the complexities of an ever-changing world
  • Understand and practically apply the latest research on Generation Z

Order Here

9 Comments

  1. Heather on January 10, 2019 at 8:20 am

    I’m an elementary school teacher and mom to a 17, 15, and 12 year old. Honestly, I find that using Simon Sinek’s idea to ‘begin with the why’ works surprisingly well.

    For instance, in my 4th grade classroom I can personalize instruction while teaching to a standard by saying, “We need to show that we have learned how to use prepositions in our writing. How could you best show me your new skill?”. Their variety of ideas and engagement in the process allow for authentic assessment. They also take greater ownership of the outcome and are proud to hand in or display their work.

    With my children, I’ll share research snippets or articles about screen time, social media, etc and start a conversation based on the findings. Then when we need to put healthy parameters in place, it doesn’t seem quite as arbitrary. Sometimes they will even spend time digging for counter arguments! But at least they’re activating the necessary critical thinking skills to deal with future issues independently.

  2. Cindy Hampton on January 10, 2019 at 9:02 am

    One classroom policy I had for many years was not to accept unacceptable work from students. If an assignment called for 20 items to be answered and a student only answered 15 or 16, the “I didn’t have time to finish excuse,” I would simply hand it back to them and tell them that I would not accept it until completed to my satisfaction. If an assignment was done incorrectly, I would have the student complete it again until I was satisfied with the work done. It only took one or two times before students realized that my “all or none” policy was going to be enforced and that I expected completed, accurate work. Just to emphasize that I expected their best, at times I would ask them if they would expect a complete diagnosis from a doctor or if just part of a diagnosis would be alright with them?

  3. Kristina Baughman on January 10, 2019 at 9:05 am

    Before my kids hit their teen years, I asked many different people how they navigated through those years. Their was one gentleman that gave me some insight that has helped me with my own kids as well as in my current job as s high school guidance counselor. As my kids reach the age of 13 (I have an 18, 15 and 11 year old) we sit down and put together the traits, character, skills, and goals each child would like to have by the time they graduate from high school and a ready to move the the next stage of life. Through that discussion we are able to talk about the areas they are concerned about; as well, as areas I have concern for so we can work together to support each other through our concerns. I also tell them there will be times they want more “freedom” and I’m quit ready, so they need to give gentle pushes to remind me. In the same way, there will be areas they don’t feel they are ready and I will gently push to help them reach their goals.

    This has helped my children to have a vision for their future, know what they are striving for, and have ownership. The big accomplishment is my children and I both feel confident they are able to navigate life in every area on their own.

    When it comes to my kids phones, or any electronics, I tell have a discussion with them when I see the phone having control of them verses them having control of the phone. When I see it happening a lot, we have more discussions that result in them seeing the need to leave their phone somewhere else in the house to help them learn to control it. When they feel they are able to handle it again, they keep it with them. There are times they will place their electronics in the “safe” place when they recognize things have gotten out of balance again. The desire is to make them aware as teenagers what I see, so they can recognize the behavior and respond on their own before an adult calls them out.

  4. Mark on January 10, 2019 at 9:30 am

    My wife teaches kindergarten and I teach graduate and doctoral classes. We sometimes joke about how her students and my students often have a lot in common! Developmentally they are at completely different stages, but the more things change, the more they stay the same. I am reminded of Robert Fulgham’s book, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. There is so much wisdom in the simplicity of those thoughts. They apply to us from cradle to grave.

    It is a very complicated world and our children and students often seem overwhelmed by it all. The number of students seeking counseling today has skyrocketed. Without the support, guidance, and love or others, life just is not very fun. What could be causing this crisis in the lives of our young people?
    I think the most important thing we can help those in our charge cultivate is relationships. It is a dying art. If you need proof, go to any coffee shop, high school campus, or social gathering place. You will be hard pressed to find individuals who don’t spend at least half their time zoned into their phone or mobile device. People are increasingly isolated from authentic life-on-life, face-to-face contact. We have traded human interaction for the convenience and perceived safety we find in electronic relationships.

    Robert Fulgham says “When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.” I think we could all use a reminder that life is meant to be lived in community. Finding a way to connect and develop real and meaningful connections with others is essential. When was the last time you stuck out your hand and introduced yourself to someone? That is my challenge for my students, my kids, and myself!

  5. Debra Tandoi on January 10, 2019 at 9:30 am

    Fairport Central School District in Fairport,NY has been focusing on Search Institute’s Developmental Assets for 20 years. I developed a Leadership Asset Training that our High School Students teach their 9th grade peers. Being so successful with peer to peer training, our 2 middle schools began a similar program with 8th grade students meeting with me to develop what they want to teach to 6th and 7th graders. Then they go into the classrooms each month during ‘Raider Time’ and teach peers. Empowering students and valuing them as leaders has helped them with every area of current issues from social media, leading by example, etc.It also builds a sense of community for youth to see the commitment of many segments of our community supporting the work and development of our youth.

    • Leadership Asset Training (LAT): LAT is about developing leadership skills, being a caring person, and leading by example. To date, 4,873 students have been trained by members of our team of 70 FHS trained student facilitators. This full-day of training is held 6 months/year for 40 9th grade students at our community Teen Center. Fairport Police participate through Fatal Vision education, Fairport Lions fund all of our trainings, and Town of Perinton provides use of Teen Center. LAT 2014 included a Leadership Retreat at MD. Fairport Lions provide all the food for the day.

    • Middle School Leadership Asset Ambassadors: In 2009-10, we piloted our middle school leadership program. We completed a summer and fall training for 200 8th grade students. A team of 70 FHS student facilitators trained students in asset building, leadership, motivation, and team building. We work from Everyday Leadership. Since 2010-11, both MB and JP have continued this focus with over 200 students trained as active Asset Ambassadors/Leaders. These trained middle school leaders work with the entire school population. This work meets our Schools to Watch criteria and includes DASA activities.

  6. Ron Stidham on January 10, 2019 at 9:40 am

    I lead a mentoring program that meets Tuesday nights. We had the students elect four officers (President, VP, Secretary, and Sergeant at Arms) to begin the school year. Each one with a unique function inside the program that helps it run smoothly. There are very few if any unilateral decisions that get made without input from the entire group or officers. Taking these steps to empower them to take ownership has made it OUR program, not just MY program. Attendance has been great, and the kids are engaged. By allowing them to make decisions that impact not just them individually, but the entire group, they’ve had the opportunity to see what works and what doesn’t, honing their decision making abilities.

  7. Jordan Mayer on January 10, 2019 at 10:42 am

    In my 9th-grade Leadership class, we implemented a student-driven service project at a local retirement home. We initially took a visit to the home to volunteer for a short amount of time so they could gain understanding and empathize with the residents. Through those observations and experiences, they brainstormed a plan to make a meaningful impact. They decided the residents would enjoy more variety and personal connection in their day. From there they all agreed it would be great if they have a Christmas party where they could decorate sugar cookies, play some live music, and just talk with the residents. They also had to raise the funds for the supplies of the party on their own. The students held the party on their own time, the residents loved it, and everyone had a great time serving others and developing invaluable skills. I would call it an all-around win!

  8. Alex Moore on January 10, 2019 at 7:20 pm

    I serve as the youth pastor at New Life Community Church in Kansas City, MO. A few years ago I pulled a group of high school students together for a leadership retreat out of town. After a few sessions of instruction and teaching, I told my group to (1) leave their cell phones behind, (2) get in the church van, and (3) ask no questions. I then drove my group to a train stop, told everyone to get out of the van, and then handed them a manilla envelope before driving off.

    Inside the manilla envelope were instructions to board the MetroLink train in St. Louis and take it to “Union Station” where I would meet them for lunch. In addition I provided enough cash for everyone to purchase their own fare. Since no one in the group had ever rode a train, been to train station, or visited St. Louis…they were all forced outside their comfort zone (and don’t forget: they didn’t have their phones to rely on).

    I was curious to see how each individual in my group would respond. After the train pulled into Union Station, I could see both relief and a new emboldened confidence on my students faces. Later I heard from my students how their peers each responded. Some were fearful and became quiet…following the crowd as soon as I drove away at the train station. Other students rose to the challenge, refused to be crippled by fear and stepped into the leadership role. The experience helped each student to become self-aware of their tendencies, deficiencies, strengths, and areas for growth.

  9. Leilani Smith on January 11, 2019 at 2:01 pm

    I taught Biology (regular, college prep, and AP Bio) all my career and one year of Spanish 1. My students were first and second language learners from various countries: Mexico, Ukraine, Korea, Russia, Latvia, China, Japan, and Vietnam. I gave “free choice” finals in Spanish: the students were given 8-9 choices and had to pick one project. Each project demanded the same approximate amount of time, and each project had a rubric. Here are a two choices:
    1) Write a small play in Spanish and videotape the actors/actresses acting it out. Supply a dialogue for your classmates and teacher. In the Q/A time with your classmates, be prepared to discuss the relevance of why you wrote the play for a Spanish speaking audience. Discuss what challenges you had to communicate ideas to non-native speakers who are learning Spanish, but they may not experience or even be aware of the community’s culture in which your characters live.
    2) Choose a Spanish speaking artist and research his/her life and his/her artwork. Reproduce a work of his/hers. Orally present in class a bio of your artist, their approach to their work, how they changes as an artist over time, and explain the style and approaches the artist made in creating the piece you reproduced. (One student did a model of La Sagrada Familia!)

    In Biology, I gave an 8 question final at the end of the year. All questions had to be answered. The questions were overarching and cross-curricular in their content. I made a movie for the parents and students with the 8 questions, and I explained how to approach researching the answers to the questions. Most parents and students loved this option as opposed to mere memorization. True research and learning was accomplished. This approach was not difficult to grade, and I actually preferred it to the fast scantron test which tended to test for memorization, but was quick to grade. I devoted 3 class periods to research in the library computer lab. Here is a sample question:
    Working individually, not in pairs or groups, research the people and concepts listed below. You are welcome to reference any prior knowledge of the principles you learned in class. Write an essay, using the writing skills we have practiced all year. The essay length needs to be 5-7 paragraphs. Words to connect: DNA, genes, hemophilia, Queen Victoria, Russian czar, eugenics, Hitler, Social Darwinism
    The students loved this type of exam question because of the autonomy.All answers were different; Therefore, it was fun for me to grade and also an opportunity to see some students blossom in ways I had not seen before. Every student learned how to strengthen their research skills, how to make inferences, how to communicate in essay form (which reinforced what they were learning in their writing classes), and they learned that assessments were about what they learned, not if they were smarter than the next student. I disaggregated the numbers for a few years and saw that compared to scantron-style finals’ test scores, the higher-level thinking format final testing scores were higher by 15-30%.

    Learning has to be relevant with this generation. They value autonomy as well.

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One Way You Can Help with My Next Book