Author, Game-Changing Youth Empowerment Coach, Motivational Speaker, Capacity Building Practitioner, Patented Inventor and Song Writer
“I inspire all ages to dream, believe, and achieve. In less than 90 minutes my goal is to equip students with a personal “GPS, “Game Plan for Success.” – Jim Cantoni
Jim Cantoni is author of Realizing Dreams: Cracking the Code to Student Success – Advancing Human Potential in Education and Health. As a practitioner who applies the research, Jim moves talk to action. He is a capacity building motivational speaker who is passionate about inspiring potential, synchronizing generations and transforming lives. Since 2005, Jim has engaged, equipped and empowered and inspired more than 12,000 kids and adults in his active learning workshops. Jim Cantoni is a success coach helps you “turn the learning light-bulb on” through his reflective action journals and “Do-It-Yourself” national award winning hands-on games. Jim’s created innovative teaching strategies and life-changing personal and professional development workshops where his goal is to increase self-awareness and your inner drive that brings you alive.
Jim Cantoni helps you increase student confidence, hone focus, and discover their intrinsic motivation to want to achieve and succeed.
In his onsite and online virtual author-guided journeys, Jim builds capacity and equips you with what research has found for exponential achievement in school, work, life, and play. Jim helps parents, educators, mentors and caring adults improve educational outcomes in school, family and community partnerships. Participants quickly discover and link to learning what motivates or is holding students back from wanting to achieve and succeed.
Rigorous, Relevant Student-Centered Enrichment +Evidence-Based Activities = Results-Based Outcomes™
Jim shows educators, mentors, and caring adults how to unlock student potential in his Realizing Dreams: YES! …Youth Empowerment Summit in school, family and community partnerships and highly-participatory staff professional development workshops. Jim extends an invitation to host a YES! at your school, in your community or through your positive youth development organization.
“Creativity is the power to connect the seemingly unconnected.”
As a right-brain thinker, this creativity quote is one of Jim’s all-time favorite quotes. It is by William Plomer, South African Author, Poet and Literary Editor and is one of the 104 inspirational and capacity building quotes found in both Teamwork and FamilyPlay, his national award winning family discovery game he made into a companion reflective action journal to scaffold the learning. The keepsake journal is called 7 Steps for Empowering Youth: Self-Awareness Developing Grit and a Growth Mindset.
Unlock Potential. Synchronize Generations. Transform Lives.™
Jim comfortably moves talk to action in a game style of play in his Empower in an Hour™ workshops. Jim’s research-based activities provide results-based outcomes. Outcomes from a Stamford Recreation engagement include 94% of students creating “Game Plans” for their successful future. In his school-family-community partnerships, Jim helps you open communication and “Go Beyond Family Engagement to Family Empowerment”. His goal is to synchronize the energy and experience of generations by putting children and adults on the same page about the child’s future.
Examples of workshops Jim provides:
- Realizing Dreams: YES! …Youth Empowerment Summit
- Student Success Workshops and Assemblies that unlock potential – quite often, in minutes, not months
- Go Beyond Family Engagement to Family Empowerment – support your school, family and community partnerships to promote student learning and success
- Synchronize Mentees and Mentors and put kids and adults on the same page.
- Staff Professional Development where the learning transfers to students
- Make it FUN, and create better connections with students side-by-side staff.
- Everybody inspires each other, changing mindsets as staff sees what they and students are accomplishing – in minutes, not months.
- On-Site and On-line “Virtual” Author-Guided Journeys
- Custom – Just let Realizing Dreams know what your goals and dreams are for student success.
- Together, we can, and will make it an empowering event using our 5P’s for a Transformational Experiential Engagement™.
- The 5P’s are all about, positive purposeful and productive play that is even producible by you.”
Scaffold and Personalize Learning in a Game-Style of Play
Jim scaffolds the learning using Teamwork and FamilyPlay, his national award-winning cooperative discovery game that he transformed into a reflective action journal called 7 Steps for Empowering Youth: Self- Awareness Developing Grit and a Growth Mindset. Jim’s keepsake action journal acts like an internal GPS guiding students with 52 natural call-to-actions that help students discover passion, overcome obstacles and find a positive direction in life.
Innovative teaching strategies – changing mindsets, in minutes, not months
To empower exponential achievement in school, work, life, and play, Jim Cantoni created over 15 Einstein-Inspired and Infused Emotional Intelligence Leadership Development and Teaching Strategies. Jim’s growth mindset formulas foster resilience and build capacity to overcome obstacles. Jim equips young and old with positive self-efficacy Life Skill Assets™ that build capacity and inspire changes in mindset, attitudes, and behaviors quite often in minutes, not months.
Professional Awards and Thought Leading Ideas
In 2011, The National Parenting Center awarded eight of Jim Cantoni’s inspirational, community and capacity building books, hands-on and do-it-yourself tools their seal of approval for bridging the communication divide. Jim’s innovations increase self-awareness, develop grit and a growth mindset by helping people learn more about each other and even themselves. In education and health, Jim’s thought leading ideas and game-changing tools build trust, empower students, strengthens teams, and develops leaders. Recent research in positive psychology what Jim applies and creates the “positive effect”. In his New York Times bestsellers, The Tipping Point and Blink, Malcolm Gladwell refers to “emotional contagion.” The viral Ted Talks speaker Simon Sinek, author of Start with the Why, encourages us all to inspire and give back. Seth Godin author of many New York Times best-sellers including Purple Cow and the Lynchpin galvanizes us to produce interactions that people care deeply about, and that is exactly what Jim Cantoni, Founder of Realizing Dreams does.
Collective Impact: Giving Back for the Greater Good
Education and Personal Awards
Jim Cantoni received his MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and his undergraduate degree in Business from Central Connecticut State University. In college, Jim was Vice President of the Student Government, President of his dorm and selected by the university to be on the Student Advisory Board to the Board of Trustees. For his creative efforts to increase blood donations with over a 150% year over year with a growth – approximately 563 to 864 pints, Jim received the Mildred K. Barrows Award as the Student Coordinator of campus bloodmobiles. The CCSU Program Council awarded Jim the Outstanding Student Award Scholarship telling him the reason was all other nominees said, “It will look good on my resume”. Jim’s heartfelt response was, “I like helping people”.
In 1987, while working with Xerox Corporation Jim Cantoni earned the distinction of the #3 highest-achieving employee in the United States of America for more than 400% year-over-year business growth as an Account Representative. A few years later, Jim received the #1 award for his contributions to the quality efforts of Xerox Corporation and was given The Malcolm Baldridge Quality Award for his outstanding performance. For his caring ways, in 1991, Central Connecticut State University recognized Jim as Alumni of the Year.
Jim resides in Glastonbury, CT with his wife Jackie, and their two boys. He enjoys reading, golf, playing Frisbee on the beach – or just about where ever he can, riding bikes, taking walks and growing garlic, kale and friends.
A few of Jim Cantoni’s contributions in life:
- Realizing Dreams: Cracking The Code To Student Success – Advancing Human Potential in Education and Health. Unlocking student potential with rigorous and relevent student-centered enrichment using research-based activities for results-based outcomes.
- 7 Steps for Empowering Youth: Self-Awareness Developing Grit and a Growth Mindset – a reflective action journal that helps you express your thoughts and feelings about your future. It’s like an internal “GPS” that guides you step-by-step how to create powerful “Game Plans” for a successful future.
- Give Teamwork … Get Results™ Playing with a Full Deck of The World’s Kindest Playing Cards™. Create the “Positive Effect” that teach kids the power of their smile, kindness, and compassion towards others with 24 experiential team, trust building, and hands-on leadership development activities. This facilitator’s guides shows you how to quickly engage, equip and empower ages 5 to adult with the highly interactive companion cards. Each deck of regular, oversized (5″x7″) and GIANT (8 1/2″ x 12″) “colossal” card have 52 matching (26 sets) of short, catchy “Give and Get” positive psychology mirror neurons that create the positive effect for social and emotional learning in a game style of play.
- Give a Hug … Get a Hug™ young children go on an animal guided journey with a highly interactive and affectionate book for parents and grandparents teaching young children how to “give and get” smiles, kindness, hugs, Eskimo kisses, hands to hold and more. It’ all about connecting with your child for social and emotional learning health and well-being.
- I Love You Two™ – Young children and parents go on a sky-high interactive ride with the endearing GivaGeta Smiles™ who sails higher and higher in the sky as the child learns how to count up to 10 in “I Love You’s”. A big-eyed, happy green frog named Friendship Frog™ meets nine new animal friends. Trustworthy Turtle™, Brave Beaver™, Determined DragonFly™ who show their love and each gives Friendship Frog™ one balloon after the other only to excitedly guess what Happiness Hummingbird™ does to help save Friendship Frog™ before he sails away.
- 7 Steps for Empowering You™. A forthcoming book with Anna Weselak and a companion reflective action journal empowering adults who want to learn more about themselves and even start a new chapter in their life. Adults discover that you are never too old or young to create a personal “Game Plan” to realize your dreams in life. Contact us to get on the pre-order wait list.
- GivaGeta – The World’s Kindest Song
Creator of “Do-it-Yourself” (DIY) tools for “hands-on” active learning, and experiential engagements, including:
- Teamwork and FamilyPlay™ opens communication and empowers youth through positive, purposeful play.
- Teamwork and FamilyPlay is a national award-winning and community building discovery game where people learn more about each other and even themselves. The 12 interactive and highly participatory hands-on fun purposefully links to learning. The cooperative play includes meaningful ice-breakers, team challenges and leadership development activities. The 52 oversized (5″x7″) cards help build trust and spark meaningful conversations as diverse ages and communities learn more about each other and even themselves. For ages 3 to 103.
- Group Size: Mentoring one-on-one, and in small to large groups.
- Teamwork and FamilyPlay is the companion cooperative game that opens communication starts the interactive fun for the reflective action journal 7 Steps for Empowering Youth. The keepsake journal scaffolds the learning in the game and comfortably moves talk to action with students now expressing their thoughts and feelings about their interests, hopes, goals, and dreams in writing then powerfully create their personal “Game Plan” for a successful future.
- 7 Step Framework for Student Success – improve educational outcomes by Realizing Dreams in Teams™ and empowering your School, Family and Community Partnerships
- Dream Tag™ – helps students discover their strengths and passion in life in minutes, not months with this creative name tag
- The United States of America Student Challenge – My Declaration of Independence™, an invitation for students to realize Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s dream, their dreams to achieve greater life outcomes, inspire others and be the change in the world they want to see.
- Mission: USA 2020 – Engage, equip and empower™ America’s youth with self-awareness developing grit and a growth mindset to be the best they can be.
- Positive Pen™ and Positive Pencil™ – inspire kids by learning the power of their smile, to be kind, caring, forgiving and more with these creative pens and pencils. Create the positive affect in classrooms, schools and choose from the over 60 short, catchy positive messages that positive psychology refers to as “mirror neurons”. Includes three (3) learn-by-doing activities. You’ll get kids attention as the Positive Pencil™ changes colors!
- Me and the 9 Selfs – Is a discovery tool and emotional intelligence empowerment framework and for educators and parents to increase students self-awareness, self-control, self-efficacy, self-worth to self-sufficiency for self-actualization.
- The World’s Kindest Playing Cards™ – Play card games that spark meaningful conversations and show kids the power of their smile, kindness, caring, understanding, how to forgive and more with fun “Give and Get” messages called “GivaGeta Kindness Messages”.
- Kids learn when they give, they get more in return. The more in return is that good feeling inside from giving.
- inspire kids by learning the power of their smile, to be kind, caring and more with color changing pencils printed with short, catchy positive messages that positive psychology refers to as “mirror neurons” that create the positive affect. Includes three (3) learn-by-doing activities.
- The over 60 GivaGeta™ messages include: Give a smile … Get a Smile™, Give kindness … Get kindness™, Give understanding … Get understood™ and Give inspiration .. Get inspired™. The highly interactive card games are fun for all ages and are available in five (5) editions.
- All editions have 54 cards and 26 matching GivaGeta Kindness Messages™ the create the positive affect. can play regular cards or the . The editions are: Educational Kindness™; Leadership Kindness™; Organizational Kindness™; Family Kindness™, and Heavenly Kindness™. There are three sizes, regular playing card and oversize (5″x7″) and GIANT size (8.5″ x 12″) for giant size fun in small to large group team activities.
- The New Math of Health™ and the My Body Balance T-Chart™ increasing self-awareness and explaining the mystery of many chronic, unexplained health issues including acne, arthritis, acid indigestion to weight gain and more. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Our educational insight is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. More healthy eating habits including vegetables are encouraged by the Center for Disease Control and many health organizations, Individual experiences will vary as always, check with your doctor prior to starting a healthier diet and lifestyle.
- Patented inventor, Illuminated House Numbers – In the year 2000, The United States Patent and Trademark award Jim a utility patent for house numbers that go on at night and off with light.