Children and Homeschooling


“He who restrains his words has knowledge, And he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.”

— King Solomon, Proverbs 17:27

King Solomon is acknowledged by many to be the wisest man that ever lived. His words regarding speech not only sum up what should be the goal for any public speaker, but more importantly the goal of any discerning thinker! The word “restrain,” means to control; and to have “a cool spirit,” means to be confident! Ultimately, successful public speaking depends on a child’s ability to control his or her own words. And when kids have their words under control – they can’t help but feel more confident!

As a parent — can you think of a more important skill-set to empower your child with, than the ability to structure and control their words and present him or herself publicly with confidence?

Public speaking is empowering: academically, socially, professionally, financially, and politically!

Empowering Speech 3-hour Program:

With successful public speaking, often less is more!   The same rule applies to the foundation training which enables a student to stand up and speak.   The Empowering Speech 3-hour program crystallizes Professor Duane Smith’s two decades of academic scholarship, national and international competitive coaching success, and professional application into immediately employable direction.  All of the training is supported and reinforced with practical, biblical application.

7 Program Directives:

  1. How to manage the fear of public speaking
  2. How to carefully perform an audience analysis
  3. How to properly prepare for any presentation
  4. How to best structure thoughts and information
  5. How to achieve credibility with every audience
  6. How to properly perform any and all presentations
  7. How to make the most of every speaking opportunity

Included with the training is the Empowering Speech workbook.

Professor Duane Smith

Duane is a husband, a homeschool father of 6, a Sunday school teacher and a Bible Instructor.  Duane is also a tenured communication studies professor, multiple championship-winning college forensics coach for Los Angeles Valley College (2000 to present), guest lecturer for the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy graduate program (2012 to present), and executive consultant (1995 to present).

Training at Your Homeschool Location

Organize an Empowering Speech public speaking workshop for your homeschool community.  Training is delivered to any location and conducted exclusively by Professor Duane Smith. Travel beyond 50 miles one-way, and any necessary accommodations, will be assessed accordingly.

3-hour Empowering Speech Program

  • 25-30 people     $35.00 per person
  • 31-44                 $25.00 each additional person
  • 45+                    $20.00 each additional person

6-hour Empowering Speech Program & Curriculum Training for Parent/Teacher

  • 25-30 people     $45.00 per person
  • 31-44                 $35.00 each additional person
  • 45+                    $30.00 each additional person

Curriculum training provides the parent/teacher with a very practical 8-week public speaking teaching plan, and equips the parent/teacher to properly instruct an individual child or group through 4 presentations (personal narrative, informative speech, persuasive speech, and impromptu).

Additional Services

Note that the purpose of the Empowering Speech 3-hour training is to provide all the tools necessary for speakers to compose and deliver any and all presentations with credibility and confidence.  However, electives are available and training can be customized.   Other options and electives include, but are not limited to:

  • The Empowering Speech 3-hour seminar workshop can be broken up into three 1-hour seminars spread out to accommodate your organization’s time and calendar.
  • Optimizing PowerPoint & Keynote Communication, 1-hour seminar.
  • Informative Speaking, 1-hour seminar.
  • Persuasive Speaking, 1-hour seminar.


Empowering Speech public speaking workshop for parents and children at Trinity Pacific Christian School, HSLDA. January 2014.


speech-award-winners-20141009Peter started doing public speaking a few years ago when he entered an American Legion annual speech competition for high school students. He had to give a 10 minute speech on some aspect of the U.S. Constitution and, over a three year period of entering the competition, he progressed from winning at the local level to where he got to the to California state finals, and placed third out of six. Duane Smith helped him prepare for the Legion competition. Duane’s coaching undoubtedly took Peter’s speaking ability to a higher level. Peter is now a freshman at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and, during their very first competition (against many other universities with much, much larger teams), SMU placed third, and Peter won first prize in the informative category and second prize in the persuasive category. I am, needless to say, extremely proud of my son Peter, and I also want to acknowledge that Duane deserves a lot of credit for Peter’s growth and success in public speaking. I would unequivocally recommend working with Duane to any young lady or gentleman who wants to develop the critical and rare skill of public speaking.

-- Brent St. John
Peter's Dad

My brother in law was head of admissions for a major university. He urged me to find a speech coach for my three teenage daughters because he was amazed at how unprepared most students are when it comes to the college interview process. Initially, I called Duane after one of my daughters struggled delivering a speech at school. Within an hour of my phone call, Duane contacted me and took the time to explain about his workshop and what he does. He was kind enough to give me helpful tips that my daughter could use immediately. Duane is professional, organized and packs in information that is easy to understand and utilize in a fun and interesting manner. What better gift to give my children than to help prepare them not only college but for the time when they will enter the workforce. My daughter Bella went on to the Academic Decathlon State competition a month later and received a near perfect score! It was a one of the best decisions I made for their future.

-- Christina Hsu
Mother of triplet 16 year old girls who attended an Empowering Speech Workshop

We worked closely with Duane to prepare our son for an oratorical contest.  Duane had an intensive session with our son and the improvement from just this one session was very dramatic. He was able to get our son comfortable with the presentation material and gave him invaluable assistance in raising his skills to the next level. Our son went on to win this contest, and we know that would not have been the outcome without Duane’s help. We recommend him highly.

-- Lori St. John
Mother of a southern California high school honor student

Duane Smith’s public speaking class has made an enormous impact on our junior high (home school) class. He’s brought professionalism, expertise, and quality character to every class session. Duane Smith has exceeded my expectations as a teacher in every way.

-- Lisa Sullivan
PSP Director, Grace Community School

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