Are you out to cause viral goodness?
Then book me to speak or teach. I would love to hear from you.
And speak or teach at your event, time permitting.

Here are some of the conferences I have spoken at recently:
✎ Keynote speaker at Inspiro Conference, Bucharest: “When You Seek You Find the Whole”;
✎ Global Connections Seminar XX at Wesley College, Melbourne, Australia;
✎ Keynote Speaker at the Leader in Me Global Summit, Salt Lake City, Utah;
✎ Speaker at TEDxHSMC in Hong Kong;
✎ Global Connections Seminar XVIII at Gredos San Diego Buitrago Campus, in Madrid, Spain.

 

Here are some of the words that always make me smile:
“I am happy in my school.”

 

And I always want to hear about a teacher’s transformation story. Teachers are my go-to source of inspiration.

 

Please share and spread the kindness.

Inciting change in education

If you are reaching out about a speaking or teaching engagement, please make sure you include the future event date, details (such as workshop, talk, keynote, etc.) and country in your message.

Address

Aleea Băișoara 2A, 400445
Cluj-Napoca, România.

Hours

Monday – Friday: 9 AM – 5 PM, GMT+2


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Simona Baciu media bio
50 word version

Simona Baciu is a trailblazer in education, President and Founder of Transylvania College.

Simona has always pursued the joy of learning and wished to see smiling, happy children around her.

She opened a kindergarten in her own two-bedroom apartment, to offer at least a few children this opportunity. It bloomed into Transylvania College today, a highly acclaimed school, now educating children from six continents.

An audacious believer in the role of behavioural and socio-emotional education, Simona developed a framework and co-authored with Susan Shapiro “The Teacher Within,” an instrumental book for teaching with kindness and care.

Speaker version

Simona Baciu is a trailblazer in education, and the founder and president of Transylvania College.

Simona has always pursued the joy of learning and wished to see smiling, happy children around her.

She opened a kindergarten in her own two-bedroom apartment, to offer at least a few children this opportunity. It bloomed into Transylvania College today, a highly acclaimed school, now educating children from six continents.

An audacious believer in the role of behavioural and socio-emotional education, Simona developed a framework and co-authored with Susan Shapiro “The Teacher Within,” an instrumental book for teaching with kindness and care.

Simona Baciu has briefed Heads of States, CEOs and international decision makers in education, pleading for the inclusion of emotional and behavioural health education in schools around the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

WHO ARE YOU?

I am someone who believes education has the power to change people, destinies and nations.
And I believed it enough to start a kindergarten for 12 children in my two-bedroom apartment, in the ’90. It’s grown into an elite International Cambridge School, with 700 hundred students from 5 continents. You can find a bit of that story here

WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?

Because I want to see children smile. Actually, I want to see everyone light up with gentle smiles. If I had a currency, it would be smile based.

WHY CHILDREN?

Tough question… Maybe because I’m a mother. And a grandmother. Because I want all children to shine the light of who they are into the world.

I’M A TEACHER. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

First of all, please accept my gratitude to you. For your courage to make a difference. In our communities, authenticity and integrity are not always widely accepted and we tend to let that be. Which is why I urge you to start a club of change makers. I call these clubs the ARAT Effect community. The journey in the book will support you. And I am here to serve you. Please write to me.

WHAT IF I’M NOT A TEACHER?

Hmmm… Are you sure? We’re all someone’s teacher. And to that person, your smile means the world.

WHAT’S THE BIGGEST MISTAKE YOU EVER MADE?

I didn’t follow my intuition on a big call. You know, that thing which gives you the goosebumps. And you feel your spine charge, all wired up. Or butterflies in your stomach. That’s your intuition talking. Don’t miss out on times like these. Our bodies and minds are smarter than we think. And we stand to lose when we don’t stop to listen. We can learn a lot from ourselves. From our own Teacher Within. That’s why I wrote the book with my friend and mentor Susan Shapiro.

WHAT’S THE BEST ADVICE YOU EVER GOT?

Believe in God and always have something in my bag to gift others. Kind words count, too. My grandmother taught me that. Also, learn from the best.

WHAT’S YOUR MESSAGE TO THE WORLD OUT THERE?

Give me 5. Literally! We all have five concerns in relationships: our roles (as in teacher, wife, etc.), our status (whatever we say that is), affiliations (marriage is one, for instance), appreciation and autonomy. Autonomy, especially, brings them all together. When out of balance, each causes much pain. Daniel Shapiro formulated these concerns in his book “Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate.” I took them further, gave each concern a finger and flipped them into “Give me 5.” Five because there are five fingers, but also because it takes five minutes per day to stay on the journey toward well-being. Together, these five have the power. I say exactly how in The Teacher Within.

YOU STARTED THIS EMOTIONAL AND BEHAVIOURAL HEALTH QUEST. WHAT IS THAT, EXACTLY?

Great question. Emotional and behavioural health are important aspects at every stage in your life. This being an emerging field, definitions are work in process. But the agreement is that emotional and behavioural healthy people are aware and able to manage their emotions and behaviours. And you know, sometimes, with very important concepts, we tend to develop vocabulary for their absence rather than their presence. Words like stress, burnout, or pessimism have been around longer than wellness, well-being or mindfulness. Which is why we need to make room for them in our lives. We need to give wellness meaning beyond the spa. What do you think?

WHY EMOTIONAL AND BEHAVIOURAL HEALTH FOR TEACHERS?

I say emotional and behavioural health for everyone. But without happy, mindful teachers, there can be no happy kids. Behind every child who blooms into their potential, there is always a teacher doing their job. And that job does not get done when the teacher is emotionally numb, or lacks energy, or is ill, or tired. Without happy, mindful teachers, we all stand too much to lose.

WHAT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION OUT THERE?

Awesome question. Here it is: How are you feeling right now? It’s the gateway to the present. To who you are right now. Start right here, connecting to how you feel. There can be no future without it.

WHAT’S THE BIGGEST LESSON YOU EVER LEARNED?

I’ll say this as simply as I can: the only way we can create miracles is together. I learned that in 2009, when we nearly lost everything. A year before, we had commissioned a new campus with a $1.8 million credit line. Then the 2008 financial crisis kicked in and exchange rates spiralled us into debt well beyond our means. We became certain this was going to be our last year. Which is why I decided I was going to make it our best. So instead of focusing on what we didn’t have - the money to pay off the loan - I decided to be grateful for what we had: my family, the teachers and staff, the students, the board members, our friends. Every day I sent thank you notes, small tokens of gratitude and daily encouragements. And then, I don’t know exactly when, miracles started happening. The board stood united, and helped us negotiate the reimbursement plan and fundraise. Just as we were receiving The School of the Year Award, I got an unexpected call from a British trust offering support… to name only a few.

WHAT WOULD YOU ADVERTISE ON THE GLOBAL BILLBOARD?

“The skies of today are the floors of tomorrow.” “Never, ever give up.” And “Give me 5!”

FINE, I GIVE YOU 5. NOW WHAT?

Would you like to cause some viral goodness in your community? If you would like to start an ARAT Effect initiative in your school, download our guide here [link to a guide]. My team and I would love to hear from you and support you as you create your own community. Would you also like to hear from me and my team on the upcoming ARAT Effect and The Teacher Within challenges and events? Sign up for news and become a member of the The Teacher Within community.

Simona Baciu media kit images

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Find your Teacher Within

Mindful, resilient and authentic teachers are groundbreaking leaders.

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