Upper School Choice - chess

TEDx Success For Students, Staff & Parents

31st January 24

It was a packed house on Sunday 28th Jan in The King Alfred Phoenix Theatre as 17 brave members of the KAS community took to the stage to give TEDx talks.

Tasked with giving talks on something they were passionate about – the students, parents, Old Alfredians and staff chose topics as diverse as Chinese tea ceremonies, ekphrastic poetry, investing in Africa, dementia research and financial savvy for students.

Head Robert Lobatto said: “It’s great to see how open the student speakers are about their experiences but also to hear different perspectives from the parents and staff. The camaraderie between the student, parent, and staff speakers was a sight to behold. It is always a special moment when you see a 17-year-old reassuring one of the more mature speakers that ‘it is all going to be OK’. It was also very powerful to see how the process developed the 3C skills which are embedded into our ‘KAS Deeper Learning Wheel’ – Creative Thinking, Communication and Collaboration.”

The speakers from the first half (click on the images to scroll through):

Speaking to the contributors before their moment on stage revealed a lot of nerves, but every single one of them did a fabulous job, spoke eloquently, kept the audience interested and left them inspired.

KAS parent Rebekah told us, “I enjoyed going on first as it meant that I could then really focus on listening to everybody else and be really present rather than worrying about my own nerves. Doing a TEDx was on my bucket list so when this came up, I knew I had to do it.”

The first of eight students to take the stage, Maya told us, Maya “I chose to do TEDx because I wanted to share my story but when I stepped on the stage I was shocked, it was a lot of people and a spotlight, but I relaxed into it in the end.”

Maya’s parents were beaming. “What we like about The King Alfred School is that its more open, no uniforms, first names, all those things which help to create connections and relationships. It was very emotional seeing her on stage, I was super proud.”

Two of our speakers were Old Alfredians, Amiee also has children at KAS so is embedded in the KAS way of life! She said, “TEDx is such a great example of the self-expression this School fosters. Students are allowed to have a voice on subjects they’re interested in. You do feel anything is possible. The student speakers have made a choice to speak about something they’re passionate about in front of a group, to spread their word because they believe that their voice is valuable.”


The speakers from the second half (click on the image to scroll through):

The talks will appear on the TEDx YouTube channel in a couple of weeks time (we will of course share them here).

The afternoon was masterminded by Kara Conti, President of The King Alfred School Society. She told us, “I could not be more proud – everyone has come so far from where they started, it’s just splendid. Rebekah set the bar really high and all the others kept it there! There is a great mix of subjects and by keeping the talks to five minutes means you get to hear many different viewpoints.”

Kara was supported in organising the event by members of the Society Committee. Special thanks to; Galia Shilo Sum who helped to edit the talks and shepherd the speakers through many rehearsals; Head of Estates and previous TEDx participant Zah who helped to bring speakers onboard with his workshop in the Autumn Term; Matt Cargill, Technical Manager of the Phoenix Theatre and; Tracy Preston, Claire Rasul and Christine Prowse whose support was, as ever, vital.

Cheers (until next year!)

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