Body Language Says It All

You may not realize it, but the majority of what you say isn’t coming out of your mouth. It’s being said with your body.

Kristin Bock, a certified body language trainer and coach, presented a “Self esteem/Self imaging” program to a group of 6th grade students at Perry Tipler Middle School on Tuesday, March 8.  Each sixth grader participated with an eighth grade mentor.  She spoke about the many ways that students can portray a stronger, more confident version of themselves.

Bock started by asking the students to form a line at the front of the room next to a microphone. Each student was required to read a question on a card they were given out loud. Some of them had questions such as “what is your favorite ice cream flavor?” or “if you could be anyone else for a day, who would you be?” They recited their answer to the group and quickly found their seat again. When everyone had gone, Bock explained that it wasn’t the question or the answer that was important. It was the manner in which they spoke (loud or quiet, fast or slow), the way they were standing (slouched, hands in their pockets) or how they looked at the audience (if at all) that mattered most.

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Students present their question and answers to the class.

After a lively presentation on how to strike an “own your ground” pose, give a confident handshake, and look people in the eye when talking, the students were asked to recite their question and answer once again to the group.

As you could probably guess, some students still refused to look up at the crowd, speak into the microphone or take their hands out of their pockets. But, the majority of the students (mostly the boys) made significant improvements! They spoke up, stood straight and fidgeted a lot

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The sixth grader (left) and her eighth grade mentor (right) practice eye contact.

less. The girls on the other hand were still shy, quiet and some even refused to answer their questions, giving answers such as “I don’t know” or “I don’t have a favorite sports team.”

We know that a girl’s self-esteem plummets during puberty. You see boys gaining confidence, while girls tend to shrink into the shadows. Bock’s interest in engaging these students connects with the Women’s Fund’s desire to inspire young women to be more confident, assertive and lively!

If you’d like to connect with Kristin Bock for a presentation to your organization, group or classroom, visit her website at bodylanguageblueprints.com.

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