Written by: Amy Schofield
Children see lots of different people as role models. Whether it’s a celebrity, a fictional character, their favourite teacher or their own parents, a role model is someone that they can look up to and aspire to be like. Having someone to admire can help to shape a child into a future role model themselves.
Here’s out top 5 role models for children:
Anne Frank was a German Jewish girl who spent two years in hiding during World War Two. Just an ordinary teenager before she was forced into hiding, Anne’s story demonstrates the strength of the human spirit. Her diary helps children to appreciate all that they have and lets them know that although bad things do happen, Anne’s remarkable resilience could be in all of us.
The creator of Harry Potter is famous for writing the stories that have inspired children (and adults) the world over, but it is her determination that sets her out as a great role model for children. As a penniless single mother, Jo Rowling was so determined to use her gift for writing to lift her and her daughter out of poverty that she took her baby in her pushchair to her local café and wrote there, day after day. Her first Harry Potter book was rejected by 12 publishers, but she refused to give up and is now the bestselling author in history. A true inspiration to young writers who dream of seeing their names in print.
The Dalai Lama
The Dalai Lama may not be an obvious choice if you were to ask a child. But he is in fact the living embodiment of being a good Boy Scout. Polite. Always thinks of others. Brave. Kind. Curious. His unerringly balanced view of the world and compassionate behaviour and rejection of anger, blame and violence is a wonderful lesson to our children and young people. In a world where they are constantly bombarded with messages on how to be, rarely in their best interests, the Dalai Lama’s centred approach to finding your own peace is a beacon of light in a sometimes dark world.
Malala is the brave Pakistani teenager who was shot by the Taliban for simply trying to go to school. It’s easy for children to be unaware of the true value of the education that is provided for free in the UK. The daily grind might them down, but for Malala and for many girls like her in Pakistan who are not allowed an education just because they are female, an education is their way out of a life of repression. Malala’s determination to go to school even if it meant risking her life showed how valuable education is and is an inspiration to our own children.
No one who watched Mo Farah’s winning of two gold medals at the 2012 Olympics can fail to remember the look on his face as he crossed the finish line. Arms outstretched, mouth open wide with happiness and disbelief, it was a defining moment. As a child, coming from war-torn Somalia to the UK, Farah had battled with the language barrier. At school he was taunted and got into fights because others saw him as an outsider. Now he’s not only a British sporting hero but also a role model and hero to Somali children in the UK who can see themselves in him. Mo demonstrates that a tough beginning needn’t be a barrier to great achievement.