I am a great admirer of eloquent speakers. I watch TED Talks in awe, closely examining the speaker’s wardrobe, hand motions, and movement across the stage. What I do the most, though, is listen.
Yes, the presenter’s message is important but, the listener – the audience – plays just as important a role during speaking and listening presentations.
Presentations to Improve Speaking and Listening Skills
Students utilize speaking and listening skills in a variety of ways in the classroom. Often, students discuss topics, books, or events. That is one type of speaking of listening with skills that are necessary to be taught. Another common way to address speaking and listening skills is through a formal speech or presentation. A future blog post will address giving speeches, and this blog post will address the prepare and giving presentations.
I wrapped up the end of the first semester with speaking and listening presentations. That time frame provided a time for students to examine purpose, audience, and genre. All three of which can be addressed through speaking and listening presentations. Students had already written a paper on the topic, so the prewriting, drafting, and research had already been completed.
Students were asked to consider a specific audience and transfer their paper content to a speaking and listening presentation. The level of technology used in each presentation, ranged from speaking with a flip chart to videos and podcasts. This was a great activity to wrap up the semester because students received immediate feedback from me and from their peers, and it was quicker to grade than a formal essay.
The rubric was simple. As a speaker, did the person speak clearly, speak loudly, and look at the audience? Did the person come prepared and use formal English? As a listener, did the person, act as a good listener by sitting forward, being quiet, and providing constructive feedback?
Speaking and listening presentations are a great way for students to receive immediate feedback while demonstrating what they know. Download this vibrant Speaking and Listening Posters to remind both the speaker and the listener what great skills look like!