Developing leadership qualities in children

ParentsWorld invited parents of Paul George Global School, New Delhi to share their insights on encouraging leadership qualities in children. 

“As a working professional, I am aware that leaders are held in high esteem, and establish themselves in this fiercely competitive world. Therefore it is important for parents to instill life skills in children. I am working on developing the leadership qualities of my five-year-old son Ainesh by establishing open channels of communication with him. As a result, Ainesh has developed self-confidence and never hesitates to speak his mind and heart. Through storytelling, we have taught him the values of empathy and discipline. Recently, we introduced a mind game with the objective of developing Ainesh’s critical thinking skills. Every evening, we play the ‘why’ game with Ainesh during which he gives reasons for simple things he does through the day.” — Santanu Mukherjee, advocate, Supreme Court of India and commercial mediator.

“It’s my dream to see my child grow into a true leader, ready and willing to take on challenges. Therefore, I encourage my six-year-old daughter Raiqah (class I) to participate in group activities of her choice in school and at home. The idea is for her to learn valuable lessons of teamwork as also to take setbacks in her stride. Moreover, I spend quality time with Raiqah outdoors. A visit to a shopping mall with my daughter the other day was a good lesson in decision-making. I asked her to make a choice between a new dress and a school bag. To my surprise, Raiqah chose the school bag because she said she needed it more!” — Mehnaz Shabir, homemaker

“Parents are the first role models of their children with much of their learning happening by merely observing them. Therefore, we try to set good examples by doing our chores efficiently and within set time schedules. I have taught my nine-year-old daughter Ariyana (class V) to always plan ahead, make practical time-tables and complete assignments according to schedule. I believe the importance of team work and collaboration can be taught through sport. So we have encouraged Ariyana and my three-year-old son Arjun (nursery) to try out team sports like volleyball, basketball, football and cricket. On weekends, we engage them in long conversations and ask children’s opinions on smallest issues.” — Sanchita Singh, homemaker

“Despite my busy schedule, I always insist on giving a patient hearing to my daughter Debasmita (10) so she develops the habit of listening and respecting others’ points of view which I believe is an effective leadership trait. We also devised a plan to teach Debasmita good work ethics such as patience, perseverance and determination. To instill these values, we gave her the responsibility of planting a few saplings in our garden and nurturing them single handedly. When her plants began to blossom, she realised the fruits of her perseverance and labour.” — Dona Bhaumik, self-employed.

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