Thursday, 27 January 2011

Speaking Tips

Original Ideas by Karenne Joy Sylvester

1. What's it going to be about?
Using the search bar function on TED, choose a video which is related to the industry your students are currently working in. Tell them that you are going to watch a video with xyz talking about abc. Ask them what they think the speaker will be discussing and why they think this. Do they have any pre-formed opinions on the subject matter?

After watching, get them to talk about whether or not the video met their expectations. Why, why not?

2. Vocabulary Collection
Give students a piece of paper with the numbers 1 - 10 written on it. While watching, any video you've chosen, ask them to write ten words they found most interesting / or ten words they didn't understand /or ten words that would summarize the story.

After watching, encourage students to share the words they've collected and to tell each other why these words were the ones they liked.

3. Debate
While browsing TED, look for a video which the community has marked as persuasive. Show the video and ask your students what the main points discussed in the video were. Ask them to choose sides on these - to take an opposing view from others in the classroom and to debate it.

4. Post-speech interview
Ask students to pretend that they are journalists at a TED talk. Watch one of videos marked asinformative and ask them to write down questions while and post watching. Get one student to pretend to be the speaker, to sit in the center of the classroom (aim to pick a student who's most likely to know about the ESP subject matter) and get the students to read out and ask their questions.

5. Critique Presentation Style
Give students a piece of paper and divide it to 2 parts: + / -. Tell students to analyze a 6 minute speech: to think about the presenter's style of delivery and ask them to write pluses and minuses, things like: she spoke too quickly; she flaps her hands about; she loves her subject material; she used good slides.

6. Wh-
Write on the board/flipchart the wh-questions: who/what/where/when/why/how. Show the video you've (or one of your students') chosen and tell them they shouldn't write anything down while they're watching. After the video is finished, ask students to sit in groups and discuss what they watched, who was the presenter, why did she make this speech, how effective was it: encourage them to ask each other questions and share opinions.

7. Compare body-language
Choose two very short videos on similar subjects (less than 4 minutes) and turn these on without using sound. Ask your students to pay attention to the speakers' body language and facial expressions while giving their talks and to compare these. How many times do they move around the stage? How do they stand, where do they keep their hands? Who looks more convinced and thus convincing?

After this discussion, play the videos again with sound, do they still think the same way? What role does body language play in the audience's reception of the content of a talk?

8. Who's the target audience?
Take one of the videos marked as most-emailed and watch it with your students. Show or tell them that out of the thousands of videos on the site, this was one of the most-shared with others. Ask them to think about what sort of people found this video so interesting they had to send it on to family members/ friends/ co-workers/ members of their online communities.

9. Will this idea fly?
Choose a video marked as ingenious, in a subject matter your students have expressed a clear interest in or is connected to their work. Watch the video with them and then ask them to discuss in groups whether or not they think the idea has merit; if they've already heard of something similar or if they disagree with its potentiality.

10. In his shoes...
Review the videos marked as courageous and try to choose a video outside the scope of your students' normal interests and responsibilites. Encourage a group discussion on whether or not, they could have done what was shown in the presentation; how they may have done things differently; who they know in their own lives/ read about who has done something like this.

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