- Acorn Leaders Toolkit -
A Team Model for Activating
Connection & Transformation
Have you ever been stuck in a really boring class, training, or event? When something wasn't clicking, you didn't feel engaged at all, and you just wished you could get out?
And then there's times when an event seems truly magical, timeless, your personal learning and transformation goes through the roof, the learning community feels empowered, and you want to be in that zone forever...
What is it that makes the difference? What makes a learning experience jump on the scale to go from boring to amazing?
There is a recipe for building stand-out, amazing events and trainings.
It's been tested and applied around the world in over 300 communiteis, schools, and organizations over the past 30 years.
People who have experienced these events scratch their head and say "wow, I've bever experienced anything like that... the sense of community connection and learning was super-charged! I felt so held and supported throughout the event! How did your team do that !?"
And yet barely anyone knows about this facilitation model. It's basically been a secret, passed on to small groups of leaders and mentors during in-person intensive trainings. Until now.
The "Secret" is Connection.
As humans we are social beings. We have a need for connection. We have a nervous system, a lymph system, etc., but on another level, we also have a connective system. We have an innate need for certain processes that help us feel connected within ourselves, to the others around us, and to the environment. Connection makes us thrive as learners and as empowered individuals.
If we build a training or event around information only - which is what most teachers and trainers do today - we aren't addressing the connective system. If we ignore connection, we are missing the mark on what's possible for truly dynamic learning and transformation.
The ACORN Model...
The Recipe for Dynamic Connection & Learning
When we work with a teaching or facilitation team, we benefit from having multiple perspectives available to help support the group. The question is whether we can fully empower and leverage each team member to contribute within a cohesive framework.
An Acorn is a team working together to leverage transformative learning using a framework built on principles of connection observed in nature. You could think of it as an application of biomimicry - observing what's happening in nature, and adapting those larger patterns to support group faciitation.
By structuring our events and roles on nature's patterns, we step into a greater field of connection. Because we are nature. Any sense of separation is in the mind only. What we observe in the larger world of nature reflects the patterns that are moving within each of us as humans.
The Natural Cycle
There is a sense of natural progression in nature- we call it the Natural Cycle. We can design and structure our learning processes to match this cycle. We can also design the roles of team members according to this understanding.
When we do this, connection skyrockets, and transformation and learning spike with it. Engagement and inquiry bloom. Events go from boring to amazing.
The Acorn Leaders Online Course with Jon Young
In this online course, 8 Shields founder Jon Young, founder of the Art of Mentoring worldwide movement, shares the "behind the scenes" team recipe that has jump-started communities and teams around the world to hold space more effectively for amazing events.
Learn a powerful team facilitation model that instantly builds connection and positive transformation into your community and learning events, proven through use in hundreds of communities and organizations around the world.
Through 8 online modules, Jon walks you step-by-step through the learning necessary to step into each role on an Acorn.
What's in the Course?
Each module includes:
- Audio-based training MP3s (8 modules, released weekly on our member's site), including over 30 chapters of audio content from 8 Shields Founder, Jon Young
- PDF transcript files
- Study guide questions.
- Personal responses via email from our response team for up to 3 months as you work through each module and send in your responses to the study guide questions. This helps you stay on track and moving forward while integrating the knowledge.
Who needs an Acorn Team?
Acorn training is perfect to introduce to your Volunteers, docents, staff, and community members.
If you are someone who works with teams, and runs trainings or classes...
If you want a powerful team-based model that makes events and trainings amazing...
A fully trained Acorn team has 8 distinct roles and unique perspectives within it. These roles can be adapted to scale into larger or smaller teams. Over time, Acorns can be grown within a community or organization to serve at different scales as needed. Like an Acorn, which contains within it the future of a giant oak tree, even a small team can hold a large vision by building a connective container for growth to occur in.
If you run events and can imagine leveraging team support to empower connection, this model will give rocket fuel to launch your results to a new level.
Learn tools that empower volunteers, docents, and teaching teams to leverage more connection in the learning environment.
Gain an effective framework that can be implemented to boost group unity, engagement, and connection in team and group settings.
Camps & Nature Programs
Bringing the ACORN model to your nature school activates deep connection through multiple perspectives. This engages learning for all ages.
Online Course Details & Registration - Opening Discount This Week Only
This week we are launching a special beta version of this online training within our network. We are planning on continuing to refine and develop this course, but there a lot of people who are requesting this training to support their programs and camps right now, so we want to begin to make this information and training more available. As part of this initial beta offering, we are making the training available this week only at a very reduced price.
Usually this skillset would be taught only at week-long Art of Mentoring intensives to committed staff, over a period of years.
People often drive or fly long distances to attend these training events. To learn this framework has traditionally represented a huge investment of time and cost, which would easily amount to thousands of dollars.
However, when we look around we see so much need and desire for tools that support connection.
So, we're trying to make it easier and more accessible for a variety of people to learn these skills right now. Yes, mastery takes a lot of time, practice, and support and guidance. But we want to at least make the core understandings available so that people can get started leveraging more connective results in their projects.
This week we are offering the Acorn Leaders Online Toolkit, with all 8 online audio modules and PDF transcripts and Study Guide amterials, as well the as the 3 month personal email response to help your learning progress, for a one time price of $197. After this week we will never be offering the course at such a steep discount, at well more than half off.
This training ahs changed the lives of thousands of people around the world, not just for the team members that take part in the facilitation process, but for the many lives that they touch through building powerful, supportive group containers for connection to occur within.
Like an Oak tree that spreads Acorns that will grow into the future forest, if you are interested in supporting this connective work in your community or organization, please join us by clicking the link on this page to get started today.