Reflection: High Expectations Friendship vs. Romantic Love Speeches - Section 3: Student Speeches


Five kids are tardy today because they are in the library printing out their speeches.  The rest of the students look like they would rather be anywhere but in this room.  I wait for a few seconds, let the silence settle in and then say, "I get the feeling no one is prepared." One kid sits up and makes an excuse about football.  I contain the snarky comment I want to make.  "How many of you have practiced?" I ask.  None.  

"It's just that I hate standing in front of the class." one student says. "All of the eyes on me; it's nerve wracking." 

"All of the classes' eyes are on you right now,"I point out.  
"Well, yeah," he admits."

"Look, I get it", I say. "Speaking in front of people is scary stuff, your mind is racing, you have points you are trying to make, and you don't want to forget anything, but you also don't want to look like an idiot."

We agree that the hardest part about public speaking is the actual speaking; standing in front of the classroom.  

I remind them that there are a lot of jobs, even jobs that don't require a college degree, but still require public speaking skills.  Cops, salespeople, waiters, receptionists, drivers, all have to communicate with the public, and have to do so in an effective way.

We discuss the difference between giving a speech on a topic of one's own interest versus an assigned topic, and I explain that I am only given so much leeway in my curriculum, but I am mindful of choice.

But I remind them that I want them to be mindful that school is practice for behaviors and skills they will need in the military, workplace or at school.

"But I understand the need for a little more time. And I would rather have quality than something thrown together." 

  Why Public Speaking?
  High Expectations: Why Public Speaking?
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Friendship vs. Romantic Love Speeches

Unit 8: Canterbury Tales - A Knight's Tale
Lesson 8 of 8

Objective: SWBAT give an expository speech about their thoughts and values regarding friendship or love.

Big Idea: Students are able to clearly communicate about a big idea like friendship or love.

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4 teachers like this lesson
English / Language Arts, narrative voice, literary technique, Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales, expository speaking, irony, Middle English
  75 minutes
student speech 2
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