TED talks inspire new ‘Chats on the Square’

Published 3:00 am Saturday, October 7, 2017

Finding new and innovative ways to motivate and inspire students has long been a hallmark of Troy City Schools. So, when TED “talked,” administrators and teachers were listening.

Eujon Anderson, technology director for Troy City Schools, said TED Talks is a nonprofit organization devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks. Although the talks originally focused on Technology, Entertainment and Design, today they cover all topics from science to business to global issues.

TED Talks was the inspiration for the Troy City Schools “Chats on the Square” inaugural event that will be from 7 until 9 p.m. Thursday, October 12 on the square in downtown Troy.  Admission is free and the community is invited and encouraged to attend.

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‘“Chats on the Square’ is designed to promote classroom learning,” Anderson said. “It is modeled after TED Talks and the chats or conversations will be presented on subjects on anything from technology to self-worth.”

Anderson said an impressive lineup of conversationalists has been secured that includes members of the community and students at Charles Henderson High School.

And, it won’t be all talk, he said, “Chats on the Square” will kick off with 30 minutes of live music beginning at 6:30 p.m.

“We have established a strict time limit of around five minutes for the presenters,” Anderson said. “We want them to get right to the point because we have an outstanding lineup and want to make sure that we stay within our time limit.”

The themes for Chats on the Square 2017 are “The Power of…”

Discussions in the form of words, art and music will consist of “The Power of Poetry and Prose,” “Power of Performance,” “Power of Process,” “Power of Persuasion” and “Power of Purpose.”

Elizabeth Huggins, Charles Henderson High School teacher, will open “Chats on the Square” at 7 p.m.

Carrie Rice’s CHHS students will focus on the “Power of Poetry and Prose” with a musical performance by Kat Deal, Poetry Out Loud, “Living” by Sherrell Walker and William Blake’s “A Poison Tree” by Reagan Gross.

Judith Park’s show choir will present “Someone in the Crowd” from “LaLa Land” and the theater students will present a scene from “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.”

Quinton Cockrell, professor, Troy University Theater Department, will also be a featured speaker.

Charlotte Walden, CHHS teacher, will speak on the “Power of the Process” and Pam Smith, retired CHHS teacher, will highlight the “Power of the Passion of Travel” along with Mallory Hughes and Marley Park, owners of The Confetti Crate.

Elizabeth Huggins’ students will demonstrate the “Power of Persuasion” with Kiley Edenfield’s “The Messy Effect,” Carsyn Smith’s “The Importance of Self Love,” and Orion Nokes’ “The Constellation Orion.”

The culminating topic, “The Power of Purpose” will feature Casey Moore, CHHS teacher; Dan Smith, Troy Parks and Recreation director; and Mitchell Sneed, SuSo Enterprises.

“Chats on the Square” is new and innovative way of communicating and, one that Anderson said should create a lot of interest.

“Right now, we are focusing on this one event but hopes are that it will be something that we will continue,” he said. “We invite the community to come out and experience Chats. It will be interesting, informative and entertaining.”