Online Course Review: School Visits 101 with Adam Wallace
For many, especially those at the beginning of their careers, a school presentation can be a thing of infinite stress and anxiety. You want to connect with your audience; it’s why you’re writing kids’ books after all, I hope! But you’ve never left your secluded writerly tower let alone stood in front of a hall of wriggly six year-olds and delivered a rock star quality, life-altering presentation to them. How the heck do you do it?? Great question and luckily, here is a great solution!
Fellow author, ace cartoonist / illustrator and all round funster, Adam Wallace has been making good on his lockdown hours, producing an extraordinary compilation of online resources aimed to educate and placate authors and illustrators at all levels of their careers.
Courses offered under the umbrella of Kid’s Book Creator Capital (aka KBCC) include : Making Money 101, Smashing Writer’s Block and School Visits 101. I took a few moments to do the latter, which I watched over a few days (brilliant to be able to buzz in and out of the course to suit your schedule). You can purchase each course separately or bundle them together in a fest of self-improvement possibilities. So what are school visits all about and how does this course help...?
Firstly the courses are super easy to access; just look up, choose, pay and begin whenever you wish. They run all the time and are always accessible. Secondly, Adam hand delivers each session. His enthusiasm and zest for sharing is infectious so spending several minutes at a time with him online is never EVER dull or boring, which is great testimony to his own ability to practise what he preaches and deliver vibrant, engaging presentations. I should know; I’ve seen him in action.
Each session or video presentation is broken down into meaningful segments informing the participant of what to expect and aim for. Voice overs are supported by text which I find uber useful. There is also ‘homework’ or associated tasks for nearly every section to reinforce understanding and encourage independent action, which again is brilliant (statistics show that this ensures better intake and understanding vs. merely listening to instructions alone). This comes in a handy downloadable PDF workbook covering every minute of the course.
This course is aimed squarely at creators be they illustrators or authors with little or no experience in school visits however seasoned presenters who no longer suffer from pre-presentation wobbles, will also benefit from these seminars because much of what Adam covers underscores the Why and How of what we do. This is important; understanding why you want to deliver your message to small people in the first place, knowing what you want to say and then understanding how you are going to do it. Adam walks you through this in snappy, easy to digest segments which cover topics including: The How To, the Numbers, Dollar Values, Book Sales, Workshop and Session creation, Top Tips, Must Dos and much, much more. In fact, useful hacks about the most overlooked but useful details like ‘what to gargle to keep your voice in pristine condition’ are included too; *helpful hints that many of us have erstwhile had to learn through trial and error. Other little golden nuggets of knowledge cover: crowd control, teacher expectations, how to create an invoice and other important aspects of the business side of being a professional presenter. This really is the ultimate 101 course, flavoured with Adam’s experienced POV but sufficiently generic enough to be the essential must- go-to resource. *I would only add one extra bit of advice: take spare batteries for your clicker if you’re a PowerPoint junkie and use that kind of gear!
Time is devoted to understanding who you are and why you are creating in the first place to better equip you with the mental tools as well as the technical know-how to present successfully. In fact, Adam never holds back on emphasising the benefits of being the best version of YOU that you can be as the key ingredient to success. His resources list of philosophical quotes, reading material and further personal development links is priceless leaving you with a compelling sense of can-do confidence and purpose.
Despite treading the presenter boards for some years now and possessing a comfortable knowledge of my abilities and limitations (yes, we all have them), Adam’s KBCC School Visits 101 course comes with the highest recommendation for its personable and authentic delivery and solid base of knowledge built on genuine experience. Graduates even get a Certificate of Completion!
There are no guarantees in life but Adam’s administrations of being prepared, being flexible and having FUN with what you do is sure to equip and inspire; the very same intentions you hope to share with your young audiences.
Author: Adam Wallace
Publisher: Kids Book Creator Capital, $150 Bundle individual course costs online
For: Creators of children’s books
Do the Course: Kid’s Book Creator Capital
Discover more about KBCC and Adam's courses this month and through November at these terrific blogs!