Speaking & Consulting

Professional Development

Engaging, creative and customized professional development

Meet the needs of your school or district through innovative workshops, lectures, and seminars designed to:

  • Address learning loss caused by the pandemic;
  • Support student mental health and well-being;
  • Promote social-emotional learning and development;
  • Encourage a welcoming, inclusive classroom climate;
  • Offer a framework to enhance connection and reduce teacher burnout, anxiety, and stress.

Please contact Rebecca for further information.

Post-Pandemic Support and Recovery: A Focus on Everyday Talk

The program offers an innovative learning model to support you or your group in enhancing your interactions with kids, or in teaching others how to do so. Developed by Rebecca Rolland, EdD, a speech pathologist, Harvard lecturer, and author of The Art of Talking with Children, it relies on her over a decade’s experience working with children, parents, and teachers and advising organizations including the World Bank on developing powerful learning experiences for children and adults.

The Focus of the Rich Talk Program

What is rich talk?

  • The keys to deeper conversation.
  • The "seven pillars" that deeper conversation can support.

Why now?

  • The "double promise" of rich talk.
  • Building resilience at a time of unprecedented stress, burnout and anxiety.

What strategies can you use now?

  • Research-based principles to enhance conversations with kids.
  • A tailored approach for your classroom, school, or district.

The Rich Talk program is:

Customizable:

Unlike many programs, which teach principles and strategies in the abstract, the Rich Talk program supports you to tailor your strategies to your own classrooms, schools, and curricula, and helps you evolve them over time. Specific, ongoing support is available to adapt the Rich Talk program to your curricula and meet learning and social-emotional goals.

Research-Based:

The Rich Talk program is based on the latest research on adult learning to support you or your group in enhancing your interactions with kids, or in teaching others how to do so.

Content-Focused:

Through a combination of discussions, exercises, and lecture, sessions explore how purposeful conversations offer a double promise: they enhance interactions in the moment and build students’ cognitive and social-emotional skills over the long term.

The Seven Pillars of Rich Talk

Supports collaboration and engagement:

Sessions are tailored to the needs of your teachers, staff, and/or leaders, and all emphasize collaborative activities, including:

  • Activities to understand the key principles of Rich Talk and strategies to support its use;
  • Role-plays to develop Rich Talk strategies, including how to help students troubleshoot conflict and take perspectives;
  • Breakouts on celebrating difference and diversity through talk;
  • Discussions of Rich Talk as a tool for self-awareness;
  • Exercises to help students combat bias and stand up for those who are bullied;
  • Strategies to nurture curiosity and creativity for students of all ages.
Offers actionable tools:

Whether you’re in the classroom or leading a school or clinic, you’ll learn innovative ways to facilitate seven key skills and capacities for children: their learning, empathy, social skills, confidence, play and creativity, openness to others, and abilities to work with their temperaments. You’ll learn the research basis of these strategies and come away with a set of actionable tools to enhance your interactions with kids now and in the years to come.

Offers feedback and reflection:

The Rich Talk program supports participants to reflect on their own best practices and develop key learnings through reflection and brainstorming. It encourages participants to explore ways of integrating “rich talk” into the curriculum, supporting deeper learning while promoting a warm and engaged school culture and climate.

Popular topics include:

  • Supporting a positive and welcoming classroom climate;
  • Enhancing dialogue and discussion around differences;
  • Assessment of the classroom language environment, with discussion of support for emotional well-being of students, faculty, and staff;
  • Building relationships through discussion and dialogue;
  • Boosting student learning while developing conflict resolution skills;
  • Enhancing the communication skills and capacities of teachers and staff;
  • Creative ways of assessing and teaching literacy skills through talk;
  • Assessment and support for student well-being, social-emotional skill development, and mental health.

Packages available include:

Single-session talks and interactive workshops
Multi-day workshops for teachers, staff, principals, and / or district leaders
Ongoing professional development, coaching, and support
Advising services for assessment, PD design, and curriculum development

Please contact Rebecca for further information.

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