Speech Class Syllabus

Speech Class Syllabus: Revised 11/27/2017

Bridges 2017-18

Kim Krajci (KRA gee)

1024 Joseph St. Louisville,OH 44641

Cell 330-232-1839 Home 330-875-5557

Email:  speechteacher.Kim.Kraj@gmail.com

 

Welcome to Speech!

I don’t expect you to walk in without stage fright.  That’s why you’re here.  I do want willingness to try to speak.  Without that, we can’t get anywhere.

RockSpeechClass.net

In order to make certain material available, I’ve created a website http://RockSpeechClass.net that will hold material for review and opportunities for extra credit.  This syllabus and the calendar of deadlines will be posted there, as well as updates in case of closings or schedule changes.  It is not a substitute for contacting me via phone or email if you have a question or want to express a concern.

Contact information is listed above.  Try to reach me in this order:

  1. Call my home number: 330-875-5557
  2. Send me an email at kim.kraj@gmail.com
  3. Call my cell phone 330-232-1839
  4. Text me 330-232-1839

I will try to respond within 24 hours of your message to me.  If I haven’t called back by then, try again.

Scheduling

I’ve been teaching speech for a few years.  I know what craziness it is to try to schedule speeches due to the imprecise nature of timing and circumstances.  Therefore, this schedule is written with the best of intentions but not much expectation that we’ll get all of the dates correct, as some presentation days may run over to two class sessions.  We’ll adapt as necessary.  The written assignment deadlines are firm.

Absences:  as there is no written text for this class, missing a class means you’re missing notes.  If you skip a presentation day, you’re missing assignments, as evaluating your peers is an assignment.  Some of the notes will be made available on this website.  You may have to ask a classmate for notes.   Help someone else out, please, if you’re asked.

There are no make-up dates for presentations.  Don’t skip because you’re afraid or not very well prepared.  You’ll reduce your grade significantly by skipping a presentation.  It’s better to come and do badly than to not come at all. This class is about giving speeches.  You’ll never overcome stage fright, fear of public speaking or learn what a bad presentation will teach you if you skip instead of trying.  You cannot fail a speech if you get up there and try.

Presentation absences due to illness or family crisis:  determined on a case-by-case basis.

Mrs. Krajci’s absences:  Due to family commitments made before this class was scheduled, Mrs. Krajci will be out of town on January 8 and maybe April 23.  Substitute teachers will fill in for her.

Written Assignments:

Two reasons for having written assignments in speech class:

  1. Introduce great speeches and rhetoric to students. Speakers and speeches from the past have much to teach us, but only when we listen and evaluate what is said and how.
  2. Students of speech learn as much or more about how to give a speech by evaluating speeches given by others. By discovering what the student perceives in others’ speeches, they can then turn that same spotlight on their own presentations.  This increases the speed of improvement.

There will be three written assignments. 

You will write a 2-3 page typewritten paper with your analysis and impressions of three speeches.  All of these speeches will be found on the Internet.

If you’ve taken Mrs. Brenda Comfort’s writing classes, then you know the standard that Bridges has set for written work.  (If you have not had the pleasure of taking a class from Brenda, do it next year.)  I will find out the edition of the style book she teaches with and get that information to you.

Submission will be on paper, not via computer.  If you’re willing to risk sending me a PDF and letting me grade what my printer spits out – give it a shot.  You may not like what my printer gives me.  You accept that risk when you send me a file.

I cannot accept any files except a PDF file.

Assignment 1:  Gettysburg Address:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Dlggkx6mks

Yes, your paper will be longer than the original speech.  Without watching the video, listen to this presentation.  Your paper should evaluate:

  • The appropriateness of the speech to the event
  • The use of rhetorical devices
  • The contemporary response and the current opinion
  • Your impressions of Lincoln’s task and how well he accomplished it.

Review date:  November 1.  Send me a draft by email and I’ll comment on it.  Not required but highly recommended.

DUE DATE:  November 13, 2017  Earlier submissions will be accepted.  Late submissions via USPS will get a reduced grade.  Emailed papers that I get after class are also docked, so don’t send it that morning.

Assignment 2:  I Have a Dream by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0yP4aLyq1g

This paper should cover:

  • The circumstances of the speech: the event, venue, audience, and speaker’s credentials
  • The use of rhetorical devices
  • Your impressions of the speech: is it relevant now?  Is it relevant to you?

Review date:  January 8.  Send me a draft by email and I’ll comment on it.  Not required but highly recommended.

DUE DATE:  January 15, 2018  Earlier submissions will be accepted.  Late submissions via USPS will get a reduced grade.  Emailed papers that I get after class are also docked, so don’t send it that morning.

Assignment 3:  America Minus the Dream by Andrea Ambam

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yHcRk2DyxiQ

This paper should cover:

  • The circumstances of the speech: the event, venue, audience, and speaker’s credentials
  • The use of rhetorical devices
  • Your impressions of the speech: is it relevant now?  Is it relevant to you?

Review date:  March 3, 2017.  Send me a draft by email and I’ll comment on it.  Not required but highly recommended.

DUE DATE:  March 12, 2017  Earlier submissions will be accepted.  Late submissions via USPS will get a reduced grade.  Emailed papers that I get after class are also docked, so don’t send it that morning.

Class Presentation Schedule

You will be giving a minimum of 7 speeches over the course of the school year.  These speeches will be:

Impromptu speaking  (no schedule)

 

Ice Breaker:  An introduction to yourself.

Tell us about yourself.  You can talk about your favorite hobbies, your family, your pets, whatever you want.  You pick.  Speech time: 3-5 minutes.

Purpose of speech:  Help Mrs. Krajci get to know you.

Presentation date:  Sept. 25, 2017

Informational speech:  What to Do with a Plastic Knife

You will demonstrate how to build or create a project with a plastic knife.  This speech must include some visual aid.  Speech time: 4-7 minutes.

Purpose:  to teach organization of speech and use of visual aids.

Presentation date:  October 23, 2016

Story Telling

You will tell a story in a speech. It may be a personal story, one you’ve written, or one you’ve found from another source.  Be sure to cite your source.   You may use up to 3 props.  Speech time:  4-7 minutes

Purpose:  emotional engagement, body language and vocal variety development.

Presentation date:  November 13, 2017.

Persuasive Speaking

You will pick a particular topic that you want to persuade us to agree with you.  Please don’t use religious or political topics.  If you want to practice convincing your parents about a particular issue, this may be the place to practice.

Purpose: development of speech content, rhetorical devices (logos, pathos, ethos).

Speech time: 6-10 minutes

Presentation date: February 12, 2018

Oral Interpretation

Take a story or poem and interpret it for us.  This piece may require memorization.

Purpose:  Vocal variety, body language, emotional engagement.

Speech time:  5-10 minutes.

Presentation date:  March 12, 2018

The Youth Leadership Program

Starting in mid-March, we will start a program published by Toastmasters International.  The Youth Leadership Program is an 8-week course to develop leadership and public speaking skills.

During this time, the class will be open to any other students of Bridges who wish to attend.  We may also open it to other non-Bridges homeschoolers.

The materials will be provided at no charge, as the program is sponsored by a local Toastmasters club.  Speeches will be given during this program.  Grades will be given based on participation in the program.  More information will be made available in early January.

If we are unable to recruit enough members for this program, we’ll continue with the additional speech assignments.

 

 

Evaluations

Public speaking is the most important skill a person can develop.  It’s also one of the scariest.  My goal is to provide an opportunity to every student to try to do something hard and very challenging personally.

In order to do that, this classroom has to be seen as a place where people have the freedom to try and not succeed and not worry about being the butt of jokes or fodder for gossip.

What happens in this classroom will not be discussed outside of this classroom with people who are not concerned about this class.  Don’t gossip.  Don’t tell about other student’s mistakes.  Never mock, never shame anyone.  Our purpose is to build one another up with love.

Everyone will be giving all the other students evaluations of their speeches.  I will be giving you a form to fill out to help you give each other your opinions on how to improve.  This information should not be shared outside of the classroom with anyone other than the speaker who is being evaluated.

Presentation Days

In order to overcome stage fright, we have to perform our speeches in front of other people.  Therefore, we will be including guests in the classroom for presentations.  We will rearrange the room like a stage for the speeches.

Your family is invited to all speech presentations, as well as any students who aren’t in class at that time. (In other words, I invite the study hall and free teachers to attend.)

How to Present in Class

Key to all presentations is preparation by the speaker.  This includes how they dress.

On presentation days, all members of the class should be prepared to speak, even if they aren’t on that day’s schedule.  Alternative clothing may be worn if necessary for the presentation.  Jeans, sweats, yoga pants and sweatshirts/tee shirts with images/text on them are not acceptable.

Ladies: 

Suit (skirt or pants) or dress or skirt/shirt combination.  Think business, not business casual.  Dress shoes or boots.  Neat hair.  Make-up recommended as far as family standards go.  Hair should be off the face and controlled so you’re not adjusting it during the speech.  Non-distracting jewelry is acceptable.

Men:

Suit or dress shirt with tie.  Bow or long ties are acceptable.  Polo shirts are not business wear.  Dress shoes or boots.  No tennis shoes unless they are all black.  Facial hair shall be neat and groomed.  Non-distracting jewelry is acceptable.  Hair should be neat and controlled so you’re not adjusting it during the speech.  Hats should not be worn unless part of the presentation.

Language:

If you wouldn’t say it in front of your priest, pastor, or grandmother, don’t say it here.  The exceptions may be quotations or citations with sadly named sources.  I don’t expect this to be an issue, but just in case – let’s keep it clean, shall we?

Guests:

We will be including guests in the classroom for presentations.  Your family is invited to all speech presentations, as well as any classmates who aren’t in class at that time. (In other words, I invite the study hall and free teachers to attend.)  That means the classroom will be set up like an auditorium, not a classroom.  We will also have a speech contest at the end of the year where local Toastmasters will come and judge the contest.  If you have someone you want to come and hear you speak, they are welcome to attend.  Permission is not needed for family.

 

All material copyright by Kim Krajci, except where noted.

 

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