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Whats Your Why?

(Rotating ~ 45 minutes)
INSTRUCTOR Lindsay-Law/Bailey

COURSE As a leader in any of your groups, you are driven and

DESCRIPTION motivated by something - whether it be a person, a goal,
an idea, or the activity itself. Start to understand YOUR
answer to this question: Whats Your Why?

ESSENTIAL I. What values do you cherish most?

QUESTIONS II. Who/what inspires you?
III. How do your values and inspirations shape your actions
and the activities in which you are involved?

MATERIALS Laptop, Speaker, Projector, Screen,

FlashDrive w/Video
Index cards (10 per delegate; 250 per
session x5)
White card stock (1 per delegate; 25 per
session x5)
Markers or Colored Pencils
Instructor Index Cards (for Musical Chairs

Instructional Plan

1. Icebreaker (10 min)

This icebreaker is called Identity Circles. The council should be split
in half and create two concentric circles (one inner circle and one
outer circle). The outer circle will face inward, while the inner would
face outward. Each inner-circle person should be paired with an outer-
circle person, and they can have a seat. Each delegate will need 10
index cards and a writing utensil. Delegates will write one value on
each card that make up their identity, ten values in total (1 minute).
When everyone is finished, the delegates will explain to their first
partner why they wrote the ten values they did (1 minute). After
sharing is over, the delegates should be asked to rip up one card; a
value they believe they could live without. The outer circle will then
shift to the right one partner and the new pairs will explain what card
they ripped and why. Delegates should continue the process of
ripping one card and shifting partners until they have three cards left
- their three core values.

2017 SHSLW Instructional Plan

2. Introduction (5 min)
The instructor would start the session by expressing the importance
of allowing ones core values to drive their actions and shape their
purpose in their relationships, organizations, and life. Finding
common values within a group can be essential as well. Being sure of
our values and sources of motivation can sustain us and help to
withstand the test of time!
3. Video (5 min)
This is an excerpt of What Is Your Why, a TED Talk by Simon Sinek.
He explains the process of our actions: the what, the how, and the
why. (see StoryBook)
4. Your Philosophy (10 min)
Now that the delegates have had time to reflect on their core values
and motivations, they will create a visual representation of these
values. Delegates should be asked to create a philosophy of sorts
based on the values they listed earlier in the session on the provided
card stock. It should be only one to two sentences long, and the
delegates may decorate it with marker/colored pencils if they wish.
After everyone has finished decorating/creating their philosophies,
they should share them out to the rest of the group. As a council,
they may take a picture holding their philosophies up and post it to
their council Twitter. Delegates can be themselves in the picture -
formal smiles are not required!
5. Activity (10 min)
This activity is called Core Values Musical Chairs. This icebreaker is
much like the regular game, but with a twist! The delegates will set
out a circle of chairs - one for each of them. The instructor will have a
pre-made set of index cards, each one containing a certain value (i.e.
kindness, fairness, accountability, leadership) and will read aloud as
they are placing one index card on each chair. The instructor will play
music, and the delegates will circle around the chairs until the
instructor turns off the music. Based on their own core values, they
must be seated in one they identify most strongly with before
everyone else is seated. In the first round, everyone will have a seat,
even if they did not find their most important value. When everyone
is standing again, the instructor will take away one chair randomly
(preferably with their eyes closed so that they cannot see the value),
and the game will continue. One person will not be seated with every
passing round, as there will be more delegates than chairs.

CLOSURE Debrief Questions:

2017 SHSLW Instructional Plan

1. What do you value most?
2. With what groups have you become involved?
3. Why are you involved in those groups?
4. What keeps you committed to these groups?
5. If you have not already, how can you use your
values to guide your actions in the future?
6. How can you use your core values to shape
your decisions in your daily life?


The diagram from Mr. Sineks video is located in the

Storybook on the Whats Your Why page. the delegates
will fill it in based on their values and the personal
philosophies they wrote. In the What circle, they may
write what they are involved in, whether it be for Salem or
a larger community. In the How circle, they may write
how they do their work for that organization/larger
community. In the Why circle, they may write why they
do the work that they do. They may even write their
philosophies or values. This will be another written
representation of what drives them!

2017 SHSLW Instructional Plan