Young women attending one of our All Girls Adventures return home more outspoken in the classroom, more self-assured in peer leadership roles and stronger as self-advocating individuals.
More outspoken students
Girls who ask more questions in the classroom are more likely to maintain their competitive edge in math and the hard sciences, and, in aggregate, perform better across all subject lines. Asking questions in class is not just a sign of ambition and cognitive comprehension; the ability, confidence and habit-of speaking up helps female students self-engage with the content of the classroom. Students who are more focused absorb and process more information; asking questions is a form of participatory learning that helps the brain remain connected to its surroundings and the subject matter. Thanks to our small groups and supportive atmosphere of participation and ownership, our girls get into the habit of speaking up, asking questions and being active, vocal members of a great team.
Peer leadership roles
Developing strong peer leaders has been at the heart of our mission since our first summer adventure in 1973. By asking young women to take-on leadership roles with their peers, we prepare them to take self-initiative when they return to the real world. Our nurturing adult leaders help our students to constantly learn about their abilities as young leaders throughout their WV adventure. During their journey, each student will function in the role of Leader of the Day, taking ownership for group processes, and being asked to lead a group of her peers in everything from our morning circle meetings to helping ensure that camp is set up properly. Of course, our leaders coach each student throughout her time as Leader of the Day to ensure her success and feeling of achievement.
Aside from learning the practice of leadership, our students learn to function as part of a team. In peer settings, leadership roles are not always clearly defined. Of course, great leaders need great followers. But great groups require the active and thoughtful participate of each member. While our female students receive refined practice in defined leadership roles, the time they spend learning to become an intricate, active and outspoken member of a team is perhaps even more valuable. During our evening circles and throughout the day, our group reflects on the successes and challenges of the day — drawing connections between what they’ve learned in an outdoor setting and the potential to apply those lessons in their daily lives.
Knowing how to lead when you’re called upon to do so is important. However, more tricky, and often more important for teens, is to know how and when to act in a peer situation where leadership roles are not-so-clearly defined. Young women participating in our All Girls Adventures come home understanding how lead a group of their peers as well as the confidence and competence to act on that knowledge.