Reflections on Presentational Speaking

I finally jumped into presentational speaking, and it worked out SO well.  To be honest, I am not sure that I would ever master the beauty of speaking assessments before my PLN.  First, I found the interpersonal bootcamp, and that was amazing.  I believe that is one of the main reason that my students are starting to speak Spanish outside of the classroom.  I had put off including presentational speaking- for many personal reasons.  I don’t like sitting through a lot of presentations, and most students don’t like giving presentations.  Also, how frequently will students have to give a presentation in the target language?  With that- I was done with presentational speaking!

Then Laura mentioned her small group speaking assessment, and I was sold!  I gave my students a variety of topics around their childhood or past trips to discuss.  They could choose one and get to work.  I gave them about a day and a half to complete the work.  While students were nervous, they did really well on their presentations!  I was impressed!  I put the minimal time limit at one minute.  So far, all of my students have exceeded that time limit.  I ended the presentation at two minutes.  Then after the presentation, students asked questions of the presenter.  It was a great interpersonal experience, and students seemed to come up with some natural questions.  I also allowed students to come up to the presenter circle as they chose-first, second, last etc.  I believe that this choice helps them.

Next time, a student suggested allowing a note card to look at once.  I think that that is a reasonable safety net for the first and maybe second presentation.  After that, I would drop the notecard.  All students expressed that they felt prepared for it, and many wanted to keep talking past the two minutes!  They seemed engaged during their partners’ presentations as well.  This did not typically happen with a whole class dedicated to presentations.  Overall, this gave me the push that I needed to keep working on presentational speaking.  If you are anti presentation like me, check out Laura’s presentation idea and use it!  What are your keys to help with presentational speaking?

7 thoughts on “Reflections on Presentational Speaking

  1. I have grade 6 for just 3 months for intro to TL. I never thought of it as a presentation, but they put on a skit with a partner about how to make a new friend. Plus, we perform these outside near the field, which ups the fun factor.

      1. I had them write a draft that had to be OK’d by me. I didn’t check grammar or verb constructions; I checked for Spanglish and Google translate. Everything else I let hang all out!
        Also, I use the words, “Use the Spanish you know!” ad nauseum. We also work on how to be creative when you only know three-four verbs.

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