Category Archives: Speaking

Student Voice! You don’t have it if you don’t speak well.

voice The sound produced in a person’s larynx and uttered through the mouth, as speech or song. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/voice Student voice. What a hot topic! Educational conferences have themes such as “Raising Student Voice” (NCTE) and “Speak Up! Finding and Using … Continue reading

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Don’t hit record yet!

Fourth graders are learning about the Reconstruction. The teacher wants to test out his new green screen tools. She has students speak and posts the video on YouTube. A huge problem: she is so focused on the tech tool that … Continue reading

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Blame the messenger–Why Online Instruction Fails

You’ve heard the phrase before. Someone brings you some bad news, and, as you begin to get upset, he says, “Hey, don’t blame the messenger!” In a school I worked at, our team leader said it often. He went to … Continue reading

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What the Oscars can tell us about speaking

Are you going to an Oscar party this year? At the last one I attended, as we came into the party, we were given an Oscar “ballot.”  Each of us marked off our predicted winner for each of the many … Continue reading

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Shortchanging Speaking

A student turns in this paper: many people think that we should not have ginetticly modifyed foods we could be having health problems in the future if we eat them, Some studys say that they cause cancer. we should pass … Continue reading

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Never make a slide like this.

I show people how to be more effective oral communicators. Part of that job is to make the complex simple. What does it take to deliver a talk well? What are the essential skills? How can those skills be condensed … Continue reading

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100 English Teachers Walk Into a Bar

Originally published in California English          One hundred English teachers walk into a bar. One by one, the bartender asks them why they became English teachers. The first one says, “I love poetry! I write poetry and … Continue reading

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But what about the introverts?

I get this question a lot when I do workshops. In my presentations, I point out that speaking well will benefit all students for their entire lives; I share a framework that makes the complex art of oral communication simple … Continue reading

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Listening skills: Way More Than “What’s the main idea?”

I sometimes get emails from an organization about improving student listening skills. They point out that speaking and listening are not being addressed in schools and claim that listening is a key piece of the “literacy puzzle.” Kudos to educators who … Continue reading

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Why Student Presentations Bore Classmates

“In New Jersey v. TLO, the Supreme Court granted certiorari to consider the appropriateness of the application of the exclusionary rule.  The Court overturned the lower court ruling in a 7-2 decision and held that the search did not violate … Continue reading

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