Intro to Competitive and Persuasive Speaking

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Teacher: Amy Meyer
Date/Time: Monday - 10:45 AM to 12:15 PM
Recommended Grades: 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th
Department: Apologetics / Speech & Debate
Grade Level: High School (9th-12th), Middle School (6th-8th)
Maximum Enrollment: 12

Every single day people across the United States and around the world stand up in front of some kind of audience and speak.  The study of public speaking is important for many reasons.  On a personal level, it clears away anxiety, builds confidence, improves communication skills, and hones critical thinking.  On a practical level, it increases your leadership potential, makes you more influential, and enables you to impart information and persuade and entertain others.  In this Competitive and Persuasive speaking  class we will introduce middle and high school students to the wonderful art of competitive speaking.  Students will learn to relax in front of an audience and will discover how to write a compelling speech.  We will also refine the skills of experienced speech students and prepare both the novice and the veteran for successful competition.   Mrs Meyer will customize each student's curriculum depending on their skill level and experience. Students are expected to  compete in a at least one speech category in a speech tournament.  There are two tournaments each year at Metro and/or at venues within easy driving distance. 

There are a surprising number of speech categories from which students can choose to participate.   The events are broken down into four categories:

  • Interpretive Speeches,
  • Limited Preparation Speeches,
  • Platform Speeches, and
  • Wildcard Speeches.
Within the categories the events are – 
  • Duo Interpretation
  • Humorous Interpretation
  • Open interpretation
  • Dramatic interpretation
  • Apologetics
  • Mars Hills Impromptu
  • Extemporaneous
  • Expository
  • Original Oratory
  • Persuasive
  • Demonstration.
  This class is designed for competition that follows the StoaUSA homeschool league.  
  • Public speaking skills taught with emphasis on topic selection, research, organization, writing and presentation. Additional Concepts: Audience analysis, humor, and vocal & nonverbal delivery.
  • There are 2-3 tournaments held at Church of the Apostles. Students are required to attend at least two tournaments hosted by Metro Atlanta Forensics Club. Parents are required to attend as guardians of their students and serve as judges and volunteer help for the tournament. EXCEPTIONS to tournament attendance must be arranged with the instructor. .
  • Many competitors attend tournaments offered in other neighboring states as well as in another location in GA.
  • Parents are also required to agree with the Statement of Faith found on the StoaUSA website.
  • Categories for the various speech events can be found here.
  • Interested students are encouraged to attend other tournaments held in neighboring states.

A minimum enrollment of 8 students is required for class to form.  

Tuition: $395 fall semester, $395, spring semester and a $85 per semester supply fee.  Tuition is due at the beginning of each semester.  These fees cover not only tuition but also a portion of resources used in class and monthly administrative fees. Please note, class will not meet on September 11th or January 22nd.

Course materials:  Students will need a dedicated speech binder with paper and pockets.  Students will also need to purchase A Writers Guide to Transitional Words and Expressions by Victor Pelegrino.  ISBN-13: 978-0945045021