I am already thinking deeply and with excitement about next year. And there is one key thing I won’t be doing any more in my business as of this week:
Assembly-style presentations with young people.
I have felt for a long time these are not effective at my aim of creating long term, sustainable behaviour change.
Sure, they might have some (unmeasured, unmeasurable) impact… I deliver some new ideas and ways of considering tech-use that isn’t layered in shame and simplicity, I show some cool memes that illustrate my point, talk in ways the honor young people as experts in their own lives…
But I know there are better ways to embed learning and help spark meaningful behaviour change around technology habits and the impact of crappy ones.
And I love working with young people, so this is a tough decision. But increasingly I feel its the right one for me.
So, no more hour-long presentations to young people in halls (or with them sitting on floors), where I have to work super hard to build rapport and trust and to deliver relatively nuanced information quickly. Then hope it rattles something inside the audience’s mind that they do something with their devices differently.
No shade on people or organisations who do these. Some of what I call ‘fly in, fly out presenters’ have a whole day to work with groups, weave a narrative and take young people on a longer, more meaningful journey through stories and sharing. Others have content that is more easily applied or straightforward to enact.
Assembly style presentation have their place and are both time and cost effective, but I don’t know for my work that they… actually work.
So, nup, no more of that.
Instead in 2023 I’ll deliver train-the-trainer education for teachers who want to be able to share the Digital Nutrition philosophy with young people in their daily work, to have these ideas discussed and debated richly and regularly in learning situations with the people they already know, teachers.
I’ll also run small group workshops online across multiple sessions with ‘homeplay’ activities for young people to practice with their parents and carers, and do more shoulder-to shoulder presentations with tweens/teens side-by-side with their adults (because parents are struggling with untangling themselves from tech too)
There are plenty of ways to work with me and my modest team of awesome humans in 2023, but one off, large group student presentations will not one of them.