SELF Talks - Middle School, High School, and College Student Development
A Student Success Program That Transforms Schools and Districts
SELF Talks by JD Speaks is a fully customizable student success program offered to middle school, high school, and college students . Backed SEL and SoTL research, SELF Talks equips students with the “strong skills” that our youth need to be healthy, thriving, and contributing members of their communities. Our program is delivered in various forms, including school assemblies, keynote addresses, interactive workshops, and a combination of these formats, all dependent on the goals you have for your school or school district!
The 4 Program Pillars
Academic success and college and career readiness are focus areas of the “success” pillar. Students learn skills they’ll need to graduate and achieve at the next level, including but not limited to metacognitive techniques, career navigation strategies, and overcoming imposter syndrome.
The “equity” pillar focuses on the “what, “why” and “how” behind inclusion and belonging. Students learn behaviors that help cultivate a positive school culture, leading to less conduct-related incidents. Building awareness about their cultural identities, how those identities shape their experiences, and how to communicate with and care for others with identities different from their own are the essential outcomes.
Students aren’t just students - they’re knowledge experts and change agents in their communities. “Leadership” has students practice design thinking to excel in leadership positions. They'll understand how big decisions get made in today's professional world, learn how to lead their peers, and practice implementing processes used to design innovative solutions for today's biggest social challenges.
Mental and emotional wellbeing are crucial for the success of all students. Students learn resilience-building, intrinsic motivation, self-compassion, and healthy decision making in the “flourishing” pillar. Practical, long-lasting lessons on work-life balance and de-centering achievement are key takeaways.
What Students Have to Say About SELF Talks
“I think that Jordan did a really good job at keeping it all engaging and entertaining while also giving good information and he is definitely good at what he does. My other big take away was around the end when we talked about balance and how it's important to evaluate each season of your life and what is most and least important at that time. And in terms of the activity that we did with partners talking about the causes we want to solve and it's balance with what we are good at, I think that the activity was very helpful in assessing how we [navigate our career options] . . . Overall I enjoyed myself and think that the information that he presented is relevant to all college students.”
- Anonymous Student, Senior, McDaniel College
What Makes SELF Talks Effective
No Boring Lectures
Every SELF Talk is delivered by Jordan H. Davis himself, an award-winning speaker and learning designer. Each talk is engaging, practical and memorable, regardless of the format.
PBIS and CASEL Aligned
PBIS and CASEL are two of the most commonly used SEL frameworks in K-16 education. The content and assessment questions of this program easily align and integrate with existing SEL programming, meeting state and accreditation standards
Before JD visits your school, you'll join a brief needs assessment call to inform the design of your schools' custom SELF Talk. We understand that every school is different, and that student learning is often not linear.
SoTL Informed, Student Centered
Liberatory pedagogy, trauma-informed pedagogy, systems-thinking, speculative design, and universal design for learning are all principles baked into SELF talk programming. Students set their own goals and ways of engaging.