Leadership in the Elementary School - Grade 5

  • Grade 5
Leadership in the Elementary School - Grade 5
Serrin Smyth

What does the Enhanced PYP say about Leadership?

  • Effective school leaders (teachers) acknowledge the agency of all member of the learning community and they motivate, challenge and encourage in the learning community (teachers and students) to take on leadership roles to advance the school mission.  

  • Leaders lead by working with others to create a shared sense of purpose and direction rather than imposing goals on the learning community.

  • In Student leadership, if leadership activities include influencing and inspiring others, taking the initiative, offering support/service, holding others to account, modelling learning behaviour and valuing/encouraging helpful behaviour, then it is reasonable to expect that all members of an educational community, including students, make a contribution.

  • Leaders view their role as consisting of multiple responsibilities that may be shared by various members of the learning community.

How did we get here? (Using an Appreciative Inquiry Model)


  • We believe… every student has leadership potential that can be developed. 

  • We believe… it is our responsibility, as teachers, to provide them with authentic opportunities to grow and explore their abilities as leaders.  

  • We believe… we can advance the school mission through a leadership programme.

Presenting the idea to Grade 5...

Our Grade 5 teachers, Ms Sharon and Ms Swindells launched the leadership initiative with the Grade 5 students prior to our October break. They shared their passion and belief for equality within leadership - every student deserves the right to develop their leadership skills! After much planning, the leadership action groups have been designed to allow for student driven action and change within our community. Additionally, there are many connections with the middle school and high school student led groups and also teacher committees. Students were asked to create a video application for the leadership positions they wished to apply for; explaining why they wanted to be involved (passion, interest, area of growth), explain their leadership qualities and areas of strength and what experience that may have that would be useful to the group. 

What are the Leadership Action Groups?

- House leaders (promoting house spirit and organising house events)

- Global Mindedness Leaders (promote inclusion and acceptance of diversity here at Seisen & take action on global issues) 

- Environmental Leaders (Promote and design sustainable projects for  our school, take action to keep our planet, community and school clean and green!)

- Communication Leaders (Create and maintain ES online newspaper/blog, document and share G5 leadership activities with our community)

- Art Leaders (Creating art with a purpose or message for the Seisen community)

- Health & Well-being Leaders (Promote sport and exercise, c reate activities, programmes, and media to promote the health and wellbeing of ES students)

- Sustainable Development Goal Leaders (Discuss and debate important issues related to the SDGs, create an action plan for an SDG)


Students were given the challenge...

You have the right to promote equality and justice within our school. What are you going to do?


Students will use an appreciative inquiry model to explore, reflect and take action:

Discover: What are we currently doing well? What is happening around our community in this area?

Dream: What is possible? What ideas do we have? What could be? How might we take action/promote change within this area?

Design: What prototypes will we design to take action?


This process will take place in a cycle, where along the way students will engage in workshops developing their leadership skills, inquire through an appreciative inquiry model, share their ideas and gather feedback on their action and lead change for the community.

 We are SO excited to see our incredible leaders in action!

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