Lifeguarding is our tool to drive accountability among students. It’s critical for our students to become Green, to have classmates assisting them and “looking out for them” to help them get into the Green

  • Students will be given a unique language to view “accountability” in a new, fresh way
  • Students will learn the need to be proactive in looking out for classmates and friends to help them avoid entering a dangerous place or drowning (red)
  • Students will be presented with an accountability challenge to go the whole school year without letting any of their teammates dip below a certain standard
"Ever since being introduced to the Lifeguard concept I’ve had a completely different perspective on my role as a leader. I understand the need to be proactive and “jumping in” to help my teammates performance stay high. It’s been a huge game-changer for me."
Varsity Girls Basketball Player – Maryland

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Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan Materials

Student Growth Areas

Exercise Length

Language Guide


Individuals who raise the performance of others and help keep them above the standards, i.e. “above the water” to prevent them from drowning

Additional Resources

Shareable Graphics

Share these in the locker room, coaches office or on social media.

Exercise Reminder Card

To emphasize and reinforce the lessons learned in this exercise with your players, download and share this graphic with them 24 hours after completing the exercise.

Quiz Questions

Exercise Slides

Powerpoint slides ready for you to use

Quiz Questions

Quiz Questions

Use these questions below to engage after you have taught the exercise.

  • What are classmates holding the standard called?
  • Why do they instruct lifeguards to constantly keep their heads on a swivel?
  • What are some warning signs classmates may show that indicate they’re sliding down through gray towards red?
Quiz Questions

At Home

Coaches, use the below question, reflection, and action to engage parents, guardians, and other family members in the lessons learned in this exercise.

Suggestions on how to use: Email to parents the day you have taught this lesson, add it to the materials you send home, or text it to text message threads with your players.

  • Question: What is the role of a lifeguard?
  • Reflection: How can you help your classmates from going into the red?
  • Action: Share the warning signs you will be looking for to help your classmates stay in the Green.
Quiz Questions

Teacher Reflection

Take a moment to reflect on the lesson and how you can lead by example to your students. 

As a teacher, how can you serve your peers as a lifeguard? Sure, it’s important for the students to serve as lifeguards for one another, but what about the teachers? Teachers need lifeguarding too. Think about what would be potential warning signs for a teacher falling into the red. How would you lifeguard a teacher that needs saving?
Special Assignment

Special Assignment

Explore the connection between standards and leadership with your students. Assign them the task of researching a prominent leader and analyzing how their adherence to high standards influenced their effectiveness as a leader. Students can present their findings and discuss the impact of these standards on leadership qualities.