Finding the Hero Within cultivates students’ potential by creating an environment in which they can open up and learn from each other. In this kind of setting, leaders naturally emerge — and often they are not the same ones who shine in the classroom or on athletic fields. The program also fosters leadership qualities in every student by:

  • Encouraging young people to think for themselves
  • Giving students control of projects and discussions
  • Acknowledging and reinforcing students’ deeply held beliefs
  • Highlighting concepts of responsibility to themselves and others
  • Seeing young people not only as potential role models among their peers, but also as future leaders

Rather than being structured as a formal, standardized curriculum, Finding the Hero Within is offered as a set of resources, activities, and ideas that teachers and youth groups can draw from to build a format tailored to their needs and interests.

Our approach does call on students’ skills in reading, writing, and critical thinking, and can easily be related to core curriculum. However, its power lies in its ability to inspire and motivate young people. Therefore, our approach is flexible, allowing each school or organization to decide on the appropriate balance of academic and non-academic activities. Finding the Hero Within is ideally suited to small-scale elective classes, after– or before-school clubs, and youth groups. It also provides ideas that schools can use for assemblies, special teaching units, community involvement initiatives, and awards programs.

The Center has borne all the costs associated with developing the key concepts of our approach, utilizing themes from the books in our Code of the West Trilogy and related films.

  • Our Hero Within Ideabook, a compendium of ideas, activities, and experiences, which we provide to qualifying schools and organizations free of charge in electronic (PDF) form.  The Ideabook is downloadable from a password-protected area of our website,
  • Discounted prices for books in the Code of the West trilogy when purchased through the Center (via a tax-deductible donation). We suggest that program leaders have access to at least one set of books for their own use. However, book purchases are not required.
  • Extras such as posters and t-shirts, which are available at a modest cost through our website but are not required.
  • Consulting by experienced program leaders, available by arrangement for an hourly fee.

To learn more about Finding the Hero Within, and to start a program in your school, click here.