Do you ever worry if your child will be a leader or a follower? When I was growing up my parents always told me to be a leader and inspire other people to do the right thing. If I just followed along with the crowd I’d miss the chance to be my own person. Being a leader is the one characteristic that has helped me walk away from bad friendships and pushed me through promotions while climbing the corporate ladder. I actually had two amazing careers before I started my third career as a mom all because I learned early on to follow my own lead.

One of the most important things for me to instill in my kids is the ability to be be a leader, not a follower. I want them to follow their own desires vs. following along with the crowd. Leadership doesn’t always mean becoming a CEO, or high level manager, but rather thinking for oneself and making wise choices with confidence. That requires learning to lead. So, when I received this unique leadership playing deck from Cool Cats, I was thrilled to introduce it to my kids. Each card defines a special characteristic for kids to understand. It isn’t about memorizing the definitions; it’s about exposure to leadership language. These cards label each characteristic for success and defines them in short, kid friendly sentences. As kids read them over and over, they begin to internalize these characteristics. As they see themselves as being successful the language now becomes the script for how they describe themselves.

My kids are only in the 1st grade so their attention span for going through the entire deck of cards at once is minimal. To incorporate some fun into our morning routine, we like to select one card at a time to read aloud and talk about as we walk to our bus stop. My kids like to play card dealer and suggest, “Draw a card mom, any card!” then we carry it with us while we walk and discuss. This is a really great way to introduce things like integrity, perseverance and patience. It sets a great tone for the day and sets my kids up for a positive mind set. They may be learning math and reading at school, but at home (and bus stop) they are developing character and values.

I love how the definitions are short and the key concepts are highlighted in yellow. This makes it easy to sprinkle learning moments throughout the day; whether we are running errands, talking at the dinner table or on our way to catch the bus- these cards get the conversation started!

Using the cards at the beginning of a new school year is perfect for us. My kids are starting over at an entirely new school with new teachers and new peers. They need now more than ever to recognize their own strengths, courage and confidence. They need to receive the message that they are capable and can do great things even at their young ages. Reviewing a new card each morning fills their emotional back packs for the day.

Cool Cats playing cards were created by Judith Addington who has an impressive amount of degrees and experience working in childhood development. It is her vision to help kids recognize their own talents and strengths as early as they can, to be our strong leaders of tomorrow. Addington created a variety of tools to help parents and teachers cultivate leadership skills that help children to thrive and grow. The Cool Cats award winning team is comprised of skilled childhood development specialists, brain development specialists, cutting edge media designers and family and child counselors. A lot of expertise goes into creating these tools with parents in mind.

You can find additional Cool Cats leadership products available to use at home, or in the classroom on their website or on Amazon.

I did not receive financial compensation for this review. All honest opinions are my own and are given in exchange for a sample product of Cool Cats playing cards. The links below are affiliate links that provide me with a small commission when used to purchase these products. #affiliates #Amazon

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia 


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46 Comments on Helping Kids Develop their Leadership Potential with Cool Cats

  1. This sounds awesome for kids. I think we ALL want our kids to be great leaders when they get older, so the time to start is now!

    • Hi Melissa,
      Yes, the card deck is meant to inspire kids to grow their leader skills! Please join our COOL CATS community!
      We love to help Moms with tools to inspire kids!
      Judith, CEO

  2. What a great game. Where we live one of the elementary schools is a “Leader in Me” school. I worked there for two years, and my youngest, before we started homeschooling went there for two years. It is an amazing experience. If you have one of those schools around, that is where I would send my child, if we weren’t homeschooling.

    • Joanna,
      I think home schools are the perfect place to instill the solid values of leadership at a young age. Research says that when kids use their skills to the utmost, they are happier, healthier, more confident and caring.

  3. Cool Cats is a great idea. These are all important lessons for kids. It can be easy to get so caught up in teaching kids reading and writing, that we forget to teach them about the type of person they might want to be.

    • Hi Erica,
      I agree! Kids have so much to offer the world as leaders of the future! Did you know that leader traits begin to emerge in kids between the ages of 6 and 10?
      Join us!

  4. This is awesome! I think leadership skills are crucial, if we start them young the better off they will be IMO. Going to try a few of these tips and tricks. Thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Kimberly,
      Leadership skills begin to emerge in children between the ages of 6 and 10. Guiding them in the skills they are good at increases their confidence and character!

    • You are so right, Renee! Kids become who they believe they are – and they are all leaders in one way or another! Helping kids to see their strengths early, helps them succeed throughout life!

    • Brittany – join our COOL CATS community! We believe that all children can be leaders in different ways. The key is to unlock this potential early in life!

    • Thank you for your positive comment, AnnMarie! We work to make little lives grow into people with confidence, caring and character!


  5. I agree that teaching your child to be a leader instead of a follower is important. Cool Cats is new to me and it sounds like an activity that be really helpful in teaching these skills.

    • COOL CATS is a new company I started to cultivate leadership skills in the young. Did you know that leader traits begin to emerge in children between the ages of 6 and 10? The earlier we nurture them and cultivate their lives with good, the happier they will be as adults!

  6. What a great program. I really try to focus my daughter on a leadership path because otherwise she would just follow along with the grain.

    • Hi Reesa,
      There is research that tells us that children can sometimes get into risky behavior when they do not understand their purpose in life. Reaching a child’s full potential, helps them set a strong foundation.

    • Hi Charlotte,
      I think today’s kids need all the positive reinforcement of solid values they can get! Developing a child’s inner-strength and confidence helps them along their growth path

  7. I think at times growing up I used to be more of a follower because I was scared of being judged. Now however I would say that I am more of a leader and like you said it does help you stand out. The Cool Cats initiative is brilliant x

  8. I haven’t heard about cool cats, but you know what I’m very intrigued now. My little guy is still just one, but I want to help him develop leadership as the years go by. So this post really was sincere and dear to me. <3

  9. This is great! My eight year old daughter is very confident but I’m always working on her leadership skills. She is certainly not a follower but this is a great way to reinforce the skills.

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