Professional Development For High Schools:
The absolute focus of this professional development is one thing and one thing only “create a long lasting environmental change in your school”. Tom is well aware of the fun and emotionally pleasing aspect of having a motivational speaker come in and pump people up. However, it is well known by everybody that energy dies off after a handful of days and people will resume exactly their previous behaviour.
That’s not good enough for Tom, and it isn’t what saved his life and he plans on passing on to other youth what it was that did turn him around. That is simply a change in environment. Every school has an atmosphere or an energy and culture amongst the students and staff. That culture has more impact on the student’s behaviour than anything. Change that culture, change the students. There is only one group of people that can do that and it is the staff.
This is accomplished by Tom teaching the staff how to make some very simple changes in the way they manage the classroom and the students.
These changes summarize into this:
- Give the students a constant lesson in the power of choice.
- Teaching students to run their own life positively is our highest objective.
- Increase the bond in the relationship between students and staff.
- This inspires students to reach out to staff with problems, and inspires them to achieve academically.
- Manage the classroom and school with “Boundaries” so students are clear about attendance, homework expectations, behavioural expectations, and what respect for authority and adults is.
- This creates an atmosphere of respect, which quickly turns into student’s respect for themselves, other students, and the overall purpose for being in school.
- This will cut through the fog and confusion in a teenager’s mind.
- In every other organization on earth this culture of authority, respect, and expectations leads to performance, and it will certainly do the same for your school.
Tom is well aware of how many things a teacher needs to remember in a day with policies and guidelines etc..... To accommodate this dilemma Tom takes the time to explain how performance in youth works, but then boils it down to an alarmingly simple plan which any staff can automatically implement without effort after:
- Several months of practice.
- Leadership from the administration in the school.
A powerful experience in the classroom where kids get down to business and learn how to learn, how to think, how to feel, and get their money’s worth from their day in school.
Unintended side effect:
Less drug use, less suicide, less bullying, easier and less stressful day for teachers.
“Choices” for Students:
This presentation is a hit with kids, plain and simple. Not predicting the impact this presentation for students would have, Tom virtually “lucked out” when he wrote this speech for the first classroom he ever spoke in.
After witnessing what this speech has done for students and how they behave when he speaks, Tom has become clear that the two concepts he brings up weigh very heavily on young people’s minds today. They weigh just as heavy as they did on Tom’s mind when he was a teen, and the thousand people he grew up with and sold drugs to.
Tom does not dare change this presentation or compromise its content for any school or concerned adult who thinks it has too much real life in it.
This works so well that the education for school staff is entirely designed to follow up on the student’s speech. When the students are done hearing Tom’s presentation they are supposed to return to a classroom that has a teacher and an environmental change waiting for them. This combined effect gives the teachers and administrators an incredible kick start in transforming the student’s behaviour, reducing their risks, and opening those students to a world of self discipline and performance.
The two concepts in the presentation are this:
- How to get everything you want in life.
- Drugs and alcohol have nothing to do with it.
- The students already know how to do this, they just don’t realize it.
- Where to find the resources they need to achieve every goal.
- Exactly what to do when they are troubled by something inside themselves.
- How easy it is to open up, and how important it is to turn to staff and parents for help.
- The number one secret on how to turn to an adult for help.
Does this have anything to do with the addictive properties of drugs, the details of suicide, or ignorance of bullying?
Nope, not one bit.
It just deals with the actual problem, that’s all.