Pedro Castilho founded his company, Verbalius, in 2013
Public speaking is no longer a nice-to-have for children. It’s a compulsory skill and an essential part of the future of learning.
Since the age of 20, Pedro Castilho helps people tell their stories, deliver persuasive presentations and communicate their message clearly. Verbalius, the company he founded in 2013, is dedicated to executive coaching in public speaking, debating and public relations skills. This week Pedro launched his brand-new project, “Verbal Youth”.
Paperjam Club: Pedro, one can easily call you “Mr Public Speaking” in Luxembourg. Where does that passion for the spoken word come from?
According to my mother I played my first role in a church theatre at the age of 5. I continued my career in 1975 as a very critical political speaker, shouting from the 7th floor of the residence we lived in at that time in Portugal. As far as I can remember I’ve always been attracted by that kick of adrenaline you feel when you get on stage. It somehow energises me. I fear it as much as I like it.
I believe everybody can speak in public. I’m convinced the earlier you start the easier it gets. And I want to help children in Luxembourg to rock the stage. That’s “Verbal Youth”! Public speaking is no longer nice to have. It’s a compulsory skill and an essential part of the future of learning. In some educational systems public speaking is taught from kindergarten. How do you want our children to compete in the future with people who started long before them training their communication skills? We need to support our youth, now.
How does “Verbal Youth” work in practical terms?
“Verbal Youth” is a 5-half days program of workshops which help children aged 8-18 to master stage fright and become self-confident in front of an audience. It equips them with the basic tools they need to become a champion at public speaking while having fun with other training mates. They learn what is storytelling, how to make their speeches visual, how to use their voice, how to practice body language and how to catch the audience’s attention. There are lots of practical exercises, including speaking in front of a camera.