How do I prepare for my first interaction with students?


So, you’ve found an opportunity that fits for you, the teacher and the students. What do you need to know and do to prepare for it?


  • After you talk to the teacher’s goals for your visit, give yourself enough time to think about what you want to say and do with the students.
  • Talk through your plan with the teacher, colleagues, or others.
  • Make sure you’ve confirmed the check-in process with your teacher.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time to find the school, park, and check-in at the classroom.

During the Interaction

  • Speak from your heart: Share your passion for the topic. It’s ok to be a little nerdy about your subject!
  • Share Stories: If it fits with the teachers’ goals, share your own life and career stories in relation to the topic at hand. Stories of failures, challenges, successes and surprises are great!
  • Bring Visuals & Props: When possible, bring in photos, equipment, and things the students can touch and use relevant to your topic.
  • Interactive/Hands-On: Consider ways to make the learning experience interactive and fun. Ask the students questions. If you use a PowerPoint, use it to show – avoid a lecture style approach.
  • Humor: You don’t have to be a stand-up comedian, but appropriate humor is a good way to connect with students.
  • Age Appropriate: Consider the age of the students you will be talking to when you are preparing for your visit. Ask the teacher for guidance about your ideas.
  • Q & A: Allow time for questions at the end and throughout your visit.
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