West Leadership Weekly Round Up: October 16th – 20th


A brainy week here at West Leadership as we continue to work on our Healthy Relationships unit – this week discussing the brain and emotional intelligence.

This week we started a new unit over the brain and it’s functions – discussing how our brain develops from adolescence into adulthood. By understanding this development process and being cognizant of it’s effects, students will better understand their emotional responses and take more control of the decision-making process. Students enjoyed discussing three important points from this unit 1) The functions of the brain are localized 2) Our prefrontal cortex is still developing until our mid 20’s, making executive functioning and rational decision making more difficult in our early years. 3) The limbic system is the emotion system of the brain – controlling basic emotions and instincts.

During our Tutoring Tuesday, mentees checked their grades and listed their missing assignments, 0’s, and late work. From there, mentors created action plans to help resolve these issues. Most low grades were due to participation and late/missing work so recommendations typically involved following up with teachers, chunking out the work day by day, and seeking out additional resources such as tutoring after school.

On Wednesday and Thursday we tied our discussions regarding the brain and its limbic system (emotional part) to a broader conversation regarding emotional intelligence and expressing oneself. First, students were introduced to the 6 basic universal human emotions: Happiness/Joy, Surprise, Sadness, Anger, Disgust, and Fear. We discussed what we associate with each of these words and how, by understanding the brain and its workings, we can better control these emotions and expressions.

On Friday our conversations regarding emotions continued to take a deep dive as we explored the Atlas of Emotions website – an interactive tool that focuses on helping people be aware of their emotions: understanding how they are triggered, what they feel like, and how to respond.  Once we finished our highly intelligent conversations regarding intelligence, students ended the week on a fun note by designing YESS at West t-shirts. Students from each class will complete a t-shirt design with final sketches submitted by next Friday. One design will be selected and printed on t-shirts for all YESS students. So far the designs have been impressive so I’m looking forward to seeing the final product next week.

That about does it for this week.

See you next time! -Ben