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CRSL

Leadership | ReLationship| communication

The Culturally Responsive Student Leadership (CRSL) programming is geared toward students in grades 4th-6th. Establishing a shared understanding and common language can help increase our student’s ability to take on multiple perspectives, build empathy, and strengthen interpersonal relationships; all attributes of effective leadership. This programming will provide myriad opportunities for students to share about their own culture, identity, values, leadership and communication styles as well as learn about their peers to develop effective leadership skills to be culturally responsive student leaders of the 21st century.

Like all of StoryArk’s programming, CRSL is embedded within StoryArk’s student-initiated, student-led creative process. It is not a top-down approach whereby schools or StoryArk attempt to tell students what to think or do, but rather, CRSL supports students in developing their leadership skills by creating space for students to share about themselves, learn about their classmates, and grow in empathy and understanding towards each other. Through conversations, activities, and games around the topics detailed below, students are empowered, uplifted, and amplified in their experience as everyday leaders. 


See overview of lessons below

CRSL includes six lessons:

Click below to read about our lesson plans

Lesson 1: Leadership

Lesson 1: Leadership

Students create definitions of what a leader is, identify characteristics (traits) of a good leader, give examples of leaders they know, and share stories and experiences of a time they were a leader.


Lesson 2: Personal values

Lesson 2: Personal values

Students identify values – standards of behavior considered important to them and their families – and discuss with their classmates why. They share how their values impact their lives and the way they act. See the list of possible values students draw from by clicking here. This list is used as a brainstorming tool, students are invited to add values of their own to this list.  

Lesson 3: Personal identities and cultures

Lesson 3: Personal identities and cultures

Students reflect on roles (family roles, job, duties, etc) and cultural identities (language, location, age, etc.) and how this is lived out in their lives.

Lesson 4: Bias and discrimination

Lesson 4: Bias and discrimination

Students have conversations around bias (a favoring of or against an idea, object, group, or individual) and discrimination (the unjust treatment of different categories of people or things), defining these terms and unpacking how these decision making short cuts can be unfair and harmful. Students co-create ways to respond to bias and discrimination that honors all, utilizing leadership skills to come up with solutions together.

Lesson 5: Communication

Lesson 5: Communication

Students focus on communication and conflict and learn about various communication styles. They use role playing to resolve conflict and learn how to effectively share what is important to them.

Lesson 6: Tying it all together

Lesson 6: Tying it all together

We build on all the lessons and discuss how these concepts relate to leadership. We create space for students to tell stories of themselves as leaders through a multitude of ways including: creating a poster, sharing an object, creating a fictional story, or sharing a real life example.

Definition of Terms

Definition of Terms

values: a person’s standards of behavior and judgment of what is important in life; the things that guide our thoughts, actions, motivations, and attitudes.

identity: the qualities, beliefs, passions, personality traits, appearance, etc that characterize a person. The unique pieces that come together to make us, us.

culture: patterns of behavior for a group of people, including the foods they eat, language they speak, traditions they practice, beliefs they hold, etc.

bias: a favoring of or against an idea, object, group, or individual.

discrimination: the unjust treatment of different categories of people or things; when someone is treated unfairly or differently because they belong to a particular group

For more information please contact Steph at steph@storyark.org