Public Speaking to Hundreds of Kids

by Jen Lee Reeves on February 2, 2017 · 0 comments

in Public Speaking

This was the best picture I could take that shows the crowd of students. Jordan was super goofy before our talk.

Through the years, Jordan has had opportunities to speak to college classes, basketball teams, community organizations, and even do live interviews. But she’s never talked to more than 50 or 60 people at one time (other than Maker Faire last May). Sure, there are bigger audiences when she’s talked to journalists. But you can’t see the viewers behind that camera. That’s why Jordan’s first big all-assembly talk in front of a St. Louis elementary school was a big deal.

Jordan was invited to speak for 30 minutes to all 600+ students at Concord Elementary School’s All Abilities Day. ┬áSince it was Jordan’s first big talk that lasted more than five or ten minutes, I decided to help her structure it as a question and answer format.

I’m so proud of Jordan for telling her story about what it’s like to live in a limb different kid. She talked about staring and how she likes it when kids ask her questions about her limb difference. She also shared the story of Project Unicorn. Of course, that means she also sprayed me with glitter in front of the whole school!

After the big talk, we spent the rest of the day meeting with each third and fourth-grade class to show the kids up close how prosthetics work, how Jordan created her sparkle-shooting unicorn horn. She also showed off how she braids her hair and ties her shoes. (Those abilities merited applause every time!)

The day was long. It was hard. Jordan spoke for a total of eight and a half hours. But it was amazing to watch the kids pay incredibly close attention to the lessons Jordan could share. To make the day extra special, the school plans to donate a speaking stipend to Camp No Limits. We can call this Jordan’s first paying speaking job!

Big thanks go to our fabulous friend, third-grader Ryan, who is a Concord Elementary School student. Not only did he and his parents invite us to speak, HE spoke to fourth graders about what it’s like to have Cerebral Palsy. He is one VERY awesome guy. (His parents are pretty fantastic as well.) We are so impressed with Concord students. They were such great listeners during the all-school assembly. The third and fourth-graders were fantastic at asking questions and learning. It was a very special day.

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