The other day, a gentleman inquiring about my speaking/workshop services asked for a video of me giving a keynote, and I realized that, surprisingly, I didn't have anything. This past weekend, I remedied that. Today's post is a little different from usual in that it centers around a video. Below, you'll see the “Ignite”-style talk that I gave (along with many others) at the 2016 Annual Convention of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). In it, I mention many of the ideas that underpin the body of work I've built on this blog so far — things like long-term flourishing, the importance of how we think, the timelessness of the nobility of teaching, and, of course, the need we have to define our Everests.
Without further ado, here is the talk:
Notes on the talk
First of all, if you're thinking, “Wow, five minutes with slides auto-advancing every 15 seconds — that is intense,” I would say you are right. I really enjoy keynotes, which typically last an hour, but this whole Ignite thing is crazy. If, after watching this, you are thinking about having your students or your staff give Ignite talks, I would recommend that you lead the charge by doing one yourself. Very intense. Insanely, there are people who do an Ignite talk like this every year at NCTE, and I even met one gentlemen (Bill Bass) who gave three this past weekend.
Second, if you didn't catch that sentence on my wall, it's this: We are all about becoming better thinkers, readers, writers, speakers, and people. This encapsulates my work and helps me to not freak out, even when I feel like I'm failing as a teacher. I can't tell you what my teaching philosophy statement said when I graduated from college, but I know what my Everest sentence is.
And finally, I would love to visit your school or event, and at the time of this writing, have availability starting in June 2018. Learn more here.