Youth Speaking to America - it's wey cool!
Teach the World to Talk

A mentor can guide you and teach you.  It's worth more than words; it could be worth your life!  I know, and that's exactly why I created Youth Speaking to America ( YSTA ).

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Our Spring 2014 Speech / Graduation Powerful
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 Toastmaster Scott Howard
So impressed and inspired by 27 5th-grade kids at the Youth Speaking to America speech contest and graduation event on Wednesday evening. My friend, York Somerville has been teaching these future leaders the skills to speak in front of an audience. The confidence they each displayed in front of a room filled with parents, teachers, and fellow students was truly impressive. Of course it included lots of laughter and great fun too!

Toastmaster, parent Brent Stephens wrote:
Hi York,
Wow, what an impressive display of talent last night! You are to be commended for a job well done with the students at Pasadena. I'm sure I was not alone in being awed by the poise, the creativity and the passion on display from our next generation of young leaders. Much of what I've heard of the program has been secondhand information from Alejandra, but I must say, the performances last night were far above and beyond what I had expected. The students showed exceptional command of the key components for public speaking and speechwriting emphasized by Toastmasters. It was obvious they were very well coached and had great enthusiasm for the program.
Alejandra has especially enjoyed the program and it was exciting to see her passion for writing her speeches, especially those about her new year's adventure, roller coasters and sea life. She took great pride in her writing and loved to practice her speeches in front of Maria and me. She returns the favor when I prepare speeches and is becoming an astute evaluator. I know this experience at such a young age has expanded her potential and will serve her for life.
Thank you again for sharing your time, your resources and your experience with the children. You have truly made a positive difference in their lives. 

By: Lauren B.

I love Toastmasters thanks to one special person. Mr. York. Over the past several weeks, our class has had the honor of the mentoring of Mr. York Somerville in Toastmasters youth leadership program. Mr. York as we called him, always came to our class with a positive attitude. It was almost like he enjoyed working with us! :) Something not many people would do. Mr. York taught us many things; like organization, organizing our speeches, being good listeners, voice project, and use of gestures. We learned how to give and receive constructive criticism through our evaluation guide. Most importantly, he taught us speaking in front of people is not our number one fear, number two being death according to many studies. At this time we would like to show our appreciation of Mr. York with a few memorable gifts. Mr. York please join me at the lectern. First a shirt. You are now officially part of the Pasadena family!!!! Second, a stopwatch. That way you no longer need to endanger your fancy phone. And third, a photo album so you never forget us.. Franklin Delano Roosevelt said this about public speaking, “Be sincere, be brief, and be seated.” As will I.

These students are my American Idols, when they call you “ awesome, funny, a great teacher, exciting, hilarious, most funny and most knowledgeable Toastmaster, weird!
It swells your head, it moves your heart. 

This Freekazodial evening brings me to tears! The children cleverly wove my invented word Freekazodial into their speeches and Table Topics. As i was talking to the audience about how important learning public speaking in the 5th grade is, I asked how many would like to be President of the United States? Almost every child raised their hand, wow! This class taught by Cheryl Rice is truly amazing. Pasadena Fundamental, expects the students and the parents to participate, and they did.
It is hard to put into words, how this affects your life. When I set out 10 years ago to take my message ( stay in school ) to as many students as possible, I had no idea how the children would affect my life. Last nite gave me the opportunity to promote 'The Artsy Ant Alphabet Art Book , when I first showed this book to this class before Christmas, I saw the excitement in the children. This is a brilliant book for children of all ages. In the moment, in these freekazodial moments, the support of fellow Toastmasters, Lynn Perry, Ruth Liss, Rick Rhodes, Amanda Tanner, Vernon Kearney, Jeanette Sweenney, Vilma Britton and Scott Howard, and of course their teacher Cheryl Rice, is special. One day I could only hope the school system and Toastmasters will see the value?

We start with a vision board. Each child writes down what they think their goals are for the future.

Watch 10 year old intellect Dalton Sherman's, keynote speech