Dr. Vanessa has been speaking for child development organizations, schools, teachers and educators, early childhood professionals, pediatric therapy groups, and parent communities for almost 25 years now. A seasoned keynote speaker and workshop/seminar facilitator, Dr. Vanessa continues to show up as the nurturing, informed, sensible, and entertaining presenter she has long been known as.
Dr. Vanessa believes with all of her heart that caring for, teaching, and raising up our children & teens is THE MOST IMPORTANT JOB IN THE LAND. She has curated a list of her most requested seminar topics. Each of these topics can be delivered in a 1.5 hour format, including 30 minutes of audience questions. Each topic is easily customized for individual audiences (educators, parents, caregivers, etc). Dr. Vanessa is also happy to adapt her list of topics to a half or full-day format to suit the needs of different organizations. Pricing is available upon inquiry.
With each speaking package,Dr. Vanessa is also thrilled to provide a 1-month free membership to her popular Dr. Vanessa Village to your village upon booking. Yes, you read that right! This means that every parent in your school/ childcare/community organization will get a free month in the membership village to learn, grow and feel championed.
Following is a list of nine highlighted topics – ones Dr. Vanessa has been asked to speak about most frequently.
Want Dr. Vanessa to speak on a topic that isn’t on the list? We are happy to discuss that with you!
Questions and inquiries can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Below is a list of topics that Dr Vanessa is frequently requested to speak on. These topics can be a jumping-off point for your organization should you be planning a conference or Pro-D Day centered on a specific topic or theme. Please click the topic below to jump to the seminar description.
What? Me Worry!?!? Supporting Children/Adolescents with Anxiety
Anxiety in children is on the rise in our fast-paced, outcomes-focused, post-COVID world. Understanding where anxiety actually begins for children/adolescents is key to informing support that helps rather than harms. Dr. Vanessa will discuss the origins of childhood anxiety and the most common forms it presents in. She will also reveal the 3-stage approach she has developed from her years of research and experience for big people – parents, teachers, educators, and other grown-ups – to respond to the hearts of anxious children/adolescents so that every child is ultimately able to know their own courage and grow into the fullest version of themselves.
Discipline Without Damage: How to get kids to behave without messing them up
When a child is threatening a meltdown in the grocery aisle, or losing it in the classroom, is it really possible to keep your cool, get the behaviour turned around, and support healthy development, all at the same time?! Following from Dr. Vanessa’s bestselling book on this same topic, parents, caregivers, educators, and big people of all kinds will discover how discipline affects children’s development, why our reactions to children’s behavior should reinforce connection instead of introduce more upset, and why the disciplinary strategies that may have been used on us as children or that you may have learned in your post-secondary training are not the ones that children really need. You’ll learn the basic and impactful truth behind Dr. Vanessa’s mantra “See it, feel it, be it,” and the the foundation of a healthy, effective approach to discipline that respects each child’s developmental needs… and works!
Navigating Adolescence: Understanding the needs of teen’s so you can show up in ways that matter
The teen brain is growing and changing in remarkable ways. During this critical time of development, parents and educators often experience adolescents as very challenging (!). They love you…they hate you. They’re happy…they’re devastated. They’re smart and sensible…they’re making terrible decisions. As a result of the complex processes unfolding in a teen’s growing brain, feeling heart, and developing sense of self, this time period can be experienced as very topsy turvy, and leave even the most unshakable parent or other “big person” feeling very much stirred. In this seminar, Dr. Vanessa will pull back the curtains on this mysterious, fabulous, maddening, and incredibly important stage of development. She will help you understand the mysteries of the adolescent brain and how to best promote maturation for the growing teen.
Right from the Start: The science and heart of growing up young children
Children don’t come with a manual. And it turns out that how we care for them has a LOT to do with how life will go for them. In fact, the science of child development has resolutely linked our approach to caregiving with how successful children will be in school, in relationships, in the workforce, and more generally as contributing members of society. It even links significantly to long-term physical health outcomes! Dr. Vanessa has spent her almost 25 year career pulling together all of the key pieces (and even wrote about these in her second book, Parenting Right From the Start) so that caregivers, educators, and parents might have a clearer path to follow as they take on, navigate, fall down, start again, detour, and otherwise walk on in the journey of childraising. PS This will not only help you understand how to grow the children you are caring for, but also who it is that YOU are.
Fostering Resilience: Giving Children The Foundation They Need to Spread their Wings and Soar
Resilience is a characteristic that is often talked about as so important for kids, but how do we foster it in children without sending them to the “school of hard knocks’? There is so much confusion out in the child raising world about this concept of resilience. Words like “grit” and “growth mindset” and “mental toughness” have become part of what we are told will allow kids to be successful as adults. But what does this all really mean? And do we run the risk of sinking a child’s ship if we get too focused on honing their resilience? Dr. Vanessa will help you figure out how much is too much, and also when you might be doing a child a disservice by overly softening the blows of life. She will share with you how to stay ever focused on growing a child who is hardy, not hardened, and finding the balance along the way.
Meaningful Self Care
This is a workshop focused on you as the big person – parent, teacher, care provider, educator, or whatever role it is that brings you to the space of caring for and raising up children. It turns out, you cannot pour from an empty cup, making self-care really important. But what does that even mean? And how can you ensure you are staying on the path of caring for yourself in order to really show up as a light maker for the children who are counting on you? Dr. Vanessa will share with you exactly what meaningful self-care is all about – which isn’t the bubble baths and wine glasses of social media. She will reveal how you can establish your own daily practice of truly meaningful self-care, including specific strategies that you can begin using immediately. Because, caring for you IS caring for them.
Social media, Screen time and Child Development: What should the rules be and why?
As a society, we have never before experienced a revolution as swift and all encompassing as the Technology Revolution, and as part of that the advent of screens, screens, screens everywhere, alongside the perplexing and rapidly shifting world of social media. What is the impact of all that on the growing brain? What is the impact of all of that on the growing heart? For the past two years Dr. Vanessa has served as an invited partner for the Dove Self Esteem Project and has been closely studying the impact of screens and social media on all aspects of child development. Is there such a thing as addiction? What about online friends verses “irl” (in real life) friends? Is all social media bad or can some of it actually be good? What about online game play verses play in the physical world? Dr Vanessa will share the good, the bad, and the ugly, alongside helpful ideas for striking the balance with children at home and beyond.
Bullying Among Children: Where bullying comes from, and how to support all children towards social compassion and resilience.
Bullying. Why does it happen? Who does it involve? And of course, how can we safeguard all children from being either victims or bullies. Bullying is everywhere. And modern times means it extends beyond the playground into the intended sanctuary of the home via social media and online platforms. The impact of bullying can be devastating, from long-term mental health fall-out, suicidality, alterations in one’s sense of self, and social isolation to name a few. Dr. Vanessa will discuss how bullying is impactful not only for the “victim”, but also for the “bully.” She will discuss how bullies and their victims are made to think, where that thinking comes from, and key things grown-ups can be doing to protect children from becoming either victim or bully.
Why kids need grown-ups to be in charge, and what almost always gets in the way
It sort of goes without saying that grown-ups need to be in charge. And yet, being in charge can be a whole lot easier said than done. In fact, Dr. Vanessa believes that the greatest crisis facing children today is that it is the children who are in charge rather than the grown-ups. It can feel like things have been turned upside down, and you find the child telling you what to do and how to do it – being bossy, demanding, prescriptive, and generally large and in charge! There is a reason this is happening with increasing frequency for children. Contrary to popular culture, this reason is not that children need a firmer, stricter hand. The true reason for why children are adopting the large and in charge stance is much more complex. Dr. Vanessa will shine a bright light on the real essence of leadership when it comes to child raising, and how to guide children to a place of emotional rest as you – the big person – steps back in as their ultimate guide.