How do we do presentations?

Ice Breaker Speech Presentations Next Week!

Are you stuck on your ice breaker speech presentation? Today’s class on mind mapping was supposed to help you figure out your topic and the material you want to cover in your speech.

Let’s talk about how we’re going to do these speeches.

  1.  We can’t do all the speeches in one class session.  Therefore, we will be randomly selected for the speech order by drawing cards.  You will be told this week on what date you will give your Ice Breaker speech.  Do not switch your date without consulting Mrs. Krajci.  She gets really temperamental about that sort of thing.
  2. You are expected to dress appropriately for the speech presentation.  Now, you may think that if you’re talking about how you love your llamas and that should allow you to wear your llama-caring clothing for the speech. llamas don't speak in You would be wrong.  Please check the syllabus for the proper attire.  Failure to dress properly will drop your grade.  Show up in a Spiderman vs. Nightcrawler t-shirt and you won’t present at all.
  3. While we will have as many as 6 speeches during each presentation class, that won’t be enough to fill up the time.  There will be additional assignments.  Please be aware of them and be prepared.  Next week, you should watch the Andrea Ambam speech listed in your syllabus and be prepared to talk about it after the class presentations are done.
  4. I could tell you not to be nervous, but that’s not going to be very helpful, will it.  Relax!  We’re going to have fun!

Evaluations by your peers

Each speaker is going to get evaluations from every member of the class.  What’s an evaluation and why does it make me nervous?

It might.  After all, an evaluation asks the audience to point out good things you did during your speech and suggest one thing you could do to improve.  Mrs. Krajci will collect all of the evaluations and hold them until all of the speech presentations are done.

Why am I asking you to do this?  It has a lot more to do with you than about the speaker you’re evaluating.

What you notice about other speakers is what you need to work on.  It’s that simple.  I don’t have a long explanation as to why that is.  I don’t know why it is.  But I know that’s how it works.  So we’re going to use this tool to help you be a better speaker.

Remember these three things:

  • Be kind.
  • Be helpful.
  • Be thoughtful.

See you next week!

September 24 Speakers:

  1. Marah
  2. Elizabeth
  3. Ian
  4. Mike
  5. Nate
  6. Austin

October 1 Speakers

  1. Gracelin
  2. Braylon
  3. Darby
  4. Morgan
  5. Jonas

Presentation Skills Put Your Body Into Your Speech

Presentation skills are the difference between a speech and an essay.  When I’m reading an essay, I can put in any emphasis I want.

Consider this poem.

To sit in solemn silence in a dull, dark dock,
In a pestilential prison, with a life-long lock,
Awaiting the sensation of a short, sharp shock,
From a cheap and chippy chopper on a big black block!

Read it out loud with a deep voice, taking your time with each word.

Now do it again in a sharp, high-pitched, scared voice.

One voice is the executioner and the other is the prisoner.  Which one do you think is which?

Read morePresentation Skills Put Your Body Into Your Speech

I Have a Dream by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered what I think was the single most important speech in the 20th Century.  Despite countless threats against himself and the Civil Rights movement, he led Americans to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC in 1963.  His speech remains as powerful today as it was that day.

Your assignment is to watch the speech.

I Have a Dream by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Remember, this recording may be older than your parents.  It’s not a great video.  Try to concentrate on

  • Dr. King’s voice
  • the words he uses
  • the cadence (rhythm) of his words
  • the sources of his content
  • the reaction of the audience.

Here’s a link to a slide show of my analysis of Dr. King’s speech.  We will be referring to his speech over the course of the semester.


Dr. King used many rhetorical devices.

Repeated phrases build up emotion in the audience.  I Have a Dream was actually not the title of the speech he planned to give, but because of his repetition of the phrase, it has become the common name for it.

Here is a list of rhetorical devices.  Can you identify any more that he used?

Read moreI Have a Dream by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

How to Write a Speech in the Weirdest Way Possible

How do you write a speech?  How to write a speech seems hard.  How to write a speech

Most people go with the traditional:

  1. Tell them what you’re going to tell them.
  2. Tell them.
  3. Tell them what you told them.

Well, that’s pretty boring.

There are a couple of things to do first.

Recognize what a speech is

Essentially, a speech is an act.  It’s a presentation in a specific time, place with specific goals for a particular audience.

It’s not a piece of art like a book or a painting.  Speech is more like dance.  While we may want to see the dance done exactly the same way every time, we can build machines to do that.  No, speech and dance and acting are events of a moment by a human and because it’s by humans, it will have variations and unique parts regardless of how hard the performers may want to present in exactly the same way every time.

Think of a concert by a famous singer.  I’ve spent a lot of time in the past year watching Paul Simon’s concerts on Youtube.  The man rarely repeats a song exactly year after year.  Part of it must be boredom, but it also is that we can’t always control the atmosphere, the audience, the stage…

When you’re on a stage, often you have to deal with several emotions and situations that never happen during practices.

Read moreHow to Write a Speech in the Weirdest Way Possible

A quick quiz about you

Your assignment for the next class (due August 27) is to read How to Write a Speech in the class notes.  This covers some of the technical details about speeches and about your voice.

Please read it and then…

I created a quick quiz for you.

A quick quiz button


Yes, a quiz.

And another quick quiz about the syllabus.

Take the Syllabus Test too!


Please complete this before August 24.  I will collect the answers then and we will discuss them during the class on August 27.

Why do you have to take a quick quiz on the syllabus?

Normally, we would take time to review the syllabus during class so you have time to understand my requirements and what I expect you to do in the class.

Because this is a speech class, I do expect you to speak in class!  (I don’t know of any other class that does that!)

But what’s the deal with the kilts?

Read moreA quick quiz about you

First Day of Speech Class

Hi.  Welcome to speech class.Welcome to Speech Class

Feeling nervous?

Nerves in Speech Class Are Normal

Speech class can be pretty scary.  Even people who like to give speeches might find the first day a bit…  nervewracking.  I think it’s a bit intimidating and I’m the teacher.

Let’s cover a few requirements and ground rules.

Read moreFirst Day of Speech Class