SoundOut Skill Building Lesson Plans


This is a lesson plan on creating roles for students and adults to support Meaningful Student Involvement.


This inquiry-based lesson plan requires a group of 4-40 students and adults. This activity was adapted from Youth Empowerment: A Training Guide (1990) created by CampFire, Inc.


When this session is complete, participants should be able to…

  • Provide the opportunity to carefully think through how to involve students in programs.
  • Deepen understanding of the work and commitment required for effective Student-Adult Partnerships


90 minutes


Flip chart paper and markers; copies of the worksheets from the end of this workshop.


Enough to accommodate the group


While not necessary, it is helpful if participants have first completed Exploring Group Strengths and Weaknesses and Students and Adults as Ideal Partners, both located in this section. Greater knowledge of individual strengths and interests, as well as what is needed to be an effective partner, helps to ground this activity in reality.


1. Split the group into groups of about 5 people each, depending on size of group. Groups should be mixed students and adults. Half the groups will work on roles for adults; the other half on roles for students.

2. Hand out the appropriate worksheet to each group. Have participants work in their groups to complete them.

3. Groups report back on the roles they developed. Allow for questions and comments.

4. Close with a discussion, including:

  • What was it like to create these roles?
  • How realistic do you think the descriptions are? Why or why not?
  • How might you apply these job descriptions to your work together?

Worksheet: Defining the Role of a Student

Describe the role for students.

Answer the following questions about the opportunity:

  1. Is this a real job? What is its usefulness to the class or school?
  2. Will this position lead someone to greater responsibility in the class or school?
  3. Is adequate support and supervision available from the staff? Do staff know how to supervise?
  4. What skills, training, experience, and knowledge will students gain from this opportunity?

Answer the following questions about possible candidates for this opportunity:

  1. Who will really want to fill this role? Is this work that is of interest or value to some students? Why?
  2. What knowledge, skills and attitudes are necessary to succeed in this role?
  3. How can you adjust the work schedule, quantity of work accomplished, quality of work accomplished, nature of training, responsibility for others, degree and kind of supervision, formal reporting requirements, and other parts of the opportunity so that more students might qualify?

Worksheet: Defining the Role of an Adult

Describe Opportunity Here:

Answer the following questions about the opportunity:

  1. Specifically what will this person need to do to make Student-Adult Partnerships work?
  2. How is this different from existing opportunities in the class or school?
  3. What kind of resources (time, training, other) will the person need in order to be successful?

Answer the following questions about possible candidates for the opportunity:

  1. What knowledge, skills attitudes, and other qualifications are necessary to succeed at this role?
  2. How could you determine if someone was suited for this role?

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Published by SoundOut

SoundOut is an international technical support project focused on student voice, student engagement and Meaningful Student Involvement. We offer workshops, tools and technical assistance to K-12 schools including teachers, administrators and students themselves. For more information visit our About Us page.

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