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Developing Teen Leadership: A Practical Guide for Youth Group Advisors, Teachers and Parents Paperback – February 4, 2011
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About the Author
Dan Appleman brings the lessons from over 20 years of experience as a youth group advisor (in addition to stints as a part time religious school teacher, camp counselor and court appointed special advocate) to Developing Teen Leadership. Author of "How Computer Programming Works", "Always Use Protection: A Teen's Guide to Safe Computing", and numerous other technical books, Dan is better known for his technical career as CEO of Desaware Inc, Co-Founder of Apress publishing, and now CTO and co-founder of Full Circle CRM. But he would argue that his volunteer career as a youth group advisor has been the more important of the two careers.
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This book is an amazing resource. I read it cover to cover (including all the footnotes). Dan's descriptions of how to plan and run leadership seminars, public speaking workshops, logistical/planning programs, communication trainings, and everything else is invaluable to me. In the almost 5 years I have spent as a volunteer youth advisor I have had trouble putting together and executing consistent programs to help the teens develop their own leadership skills while also sitting back and letting them make their own mistakes and truly lead the group.
Developing Teen Leadership has given me some great ideas for how to do this much better and more effectively and help me become a more complete youth advisor. Reading through the program ideas for leadership has inspired me to start planning my own programs again (certainly borrowing a few of the ideas in the book) and has helped me get over the hump and stop making excuses about why I did not need to or couldn't do these things. The concepts behind being a back seat driver and planting seeds always made sense to me but I could never seem to muster the patience to figure out how to do this on more of a wide scale in the group rather then just one on one with people that I had already developed strong relationships with.
This book will become my go to guide for being a youth advisor and has helped rekindle some of the passion I have been starting to lose for doing this. Just reading it yesterday has helped me feel more empowered to go do some of the amazing things that it talks about.