+44 7730 409648
Since setting up Talking Voice in 2007, Janet Shell has built a reputation for providing some of the most constructive, effective and enjoyable training on voice use in the classroom. An experienced classroom teacher herself, Janet brings together her knowledge of the voice and experience as a performer to create targeted training that trainee teachers really relate to.
Of all professional voice users, teachers are the occupational body to present with voice problems most frequently at speech clinics over the course of a career. No fewer than one in five teachers miss days at school each year because of voice related problems.
Teachers depend upon their voices for much of their work. Their purpose is to communicate their knowledge, yet their very environment can make that work difficult and can indeed damage the voice upon which they depend. It is all too easy to take one's voice for granted, especially when under pressure to prepare and give lessons.
Teaching is a profession full of demands. Being aware of its pitfalls can help provide the foundation for a long and rewarding career.
Talking Voice offers sessions to cover the basics of vocal health and to learn how a little bit of voice knowledge can transform the teacher in the classroom, and beyond. Sessions include:
The sessions are interactive and great fun. There is no death by powerpoint here!
Twilight Session lasting 90 minutes – 2 hours (for an overview and to introduce ideas and establish principles including warming up the voice).
Half Day lasting up to 4 hours (more in depth work on voice and presence, practising different voice qualities, creating a stronger presence and highlighting helpful behaviour around voice).
Full Day 6 hours (all of the above plus taking it in turns to speak to the group and get feedback, being mindful of the way we say things and a look at emotional intelligence in the classroom).
NEW FOR 2020 The Emotionally Intelligent Teacher 2 hours (a history of emotional intelligence, followed by marrying together some of the principles from emotional intelligence with those of Neuro-linguistic Programming to create a mindful classroom where language choice, body language and all the seemingly peripheral soft skills help establish a positive and creative learning environment).
Think for a moment about any teachers you know? Do their voices sound husky? Tired? Strained? Do they clear their throats more often when speaking? Is their speech effortful and strained? Do they have to shout increasingly louder to be heard? Do their voices ring out with confidence or are they struggling to be heard? Do they stagger on using the voice regardless of a cold or cough? Or perhaps they are one of the lucky ones who seem to breeze through their lessons effortlessly.
Talking Voice sets out to highlight some vocal issues and to improve the knowledge and awareness of teachers via a series of workshops designed to leave lasting structures in place and to help each teacher gain insights into their own unique voice.
The workshop begins by exploring vocal qualities and actively encouraging participants to discover their own voice. Most people do not recognise the full range of expression of which they are capable and have never been given the opportunity to enjoy this!
During the course of the workshop, there is a chance to ask questions and to experience how posture and breathing directly affect the voice. Articulation is extremely important in a classroom particularly as often, the acoustic is not helpful for the listener and clarity diminishes with distance from the teacher. Simple techniques like lengthening vowels and speaking "on the voice" make a huge difference.
With background chatter in classes, teachers most often suffer the Lombard Effect where speech effort increases directly in proportion to the background noise - think of any parties you may have been to or football matches for which you suffer vocally the next day!
In order to maintain good vocal quality, the voice needs to be supported by muscles other than the ones in the throat. The workshop explores how to activate these muscles effectively via the Accent Method of breathing.
Learning a little about how the vocal folds work is useful when they collide anything between hundreds of times a second! Skillful use of muscles and coordination will bring about a more energised and dynamic voice.
Of course there is some discussion about hydration and tips for recognising when help is needed. A few small changes made now could save the long reaching impacts of permanent voice damage due to misuse and ignorance.
There are a number of resources which are often referred to during teacher training days. To access these, click here.
Half Day £395
Full Day £595
The Emotionally Intelligent Teacher £320
All prices are inclusive of travel and other costs.