Speaking to High School Students - a tough audience
I spoke to high school students at the Furture ACES conference in Talisman. This is a personal development program for high and middle school students from Toronto.
Here is the summaryof the Future ACES program from their website:
"Future Aces™ is a proactive character-building initiative that can become the foundation within which to support other social skills programs. The principles of the Future Aces™ philosophy are the guidelines used in all of the Foundation’s initiatives and programs. This philosophy challenges individuals to make more responsible lifestyle choices that benefit themselves and society."
I delivered two sessions on public speaking. I do this once a year and have been speaking to them for at least six years.
I donate my time and energy to Future ACES for a few reasons. Number one is that speaking to high school students keeps me humble and challenges me to be a better presenter. They are a tough audience even though they don't intend to be. Some of them have a way of sitting upon chairs that I find strange.
I'm used to speaking to business owners, managers and professionals who are demanding but follow the rules of decorum that I prefer. I had to learn to present differently to this audience of young teens. To keep their attention the presentation had to be much more interactive. I learned to remove humor and examples that they would not understand. And I throw more questions at them to keep them engaged.
If you think that you are a good speaker - try speaking to high school students. That will bring you down a notch or few.
Of course there are other reasons why I do this.
There is a special sense of giving to young minds who appreciate the value in what you offer them. Of course not all young minds appreciate your value. I think that we all have a responsibility to help shape young minds. The Future ACES program is impressive in it's goals, organization and accomplishments. I enjoy being associated with such a positive program. I am encouraged by the opportunities that youth have today.
So I contribute my small piece.
It is ironic that so many of my current interests were shapped by my high school days. More importantly, several of my current successes are linked to my high school failures.
On top of the two one hour presentations was a five hour drive. The day was mentally and physcially draining. I'm glad it's over and I look forward to next year.
Public Speaking Pro
Presentation Skills Success
Toronto Speech Coach
Executive Speech Coach, Business presentation tips from George Torok, the Speech Coach for Executives.