Planning, Organizing, Creating and Giving a Speech in Grade 4

On Tuesday, April 24, we began the lessons on how to plan, organize, create, and deliver a speech.  Speeches will be presented in class sometime in May.  The dates of the speeches will be given later.

What is a speech?
-3 to 5 minutes long prepared speech
-written out in full sentences on cue cards
-practiced so often by reading that it is almost or fully memorized – though -it doesn’t have to be memorized but it is a script
– therefore it must be said the exact same way every time it is presented
– you don’t want to  make it up  as you go
-props are not allowed, no costumes
-no excessive movements like running
-dramatic hand gestures, facial expressions OK
-use the voice dramatically through pacing, pauses, pitch, tone
-topic can be researched or from own knowledge – but no retelling of stories or make believe story-telling
-easiest topics for beginning speakers is to speak about what they know about

Here are the steps and planning process for you to give a speech.

1.  Choose your Topic very carefully.

Some recent Titles of Grade 4 speeches

My big sister, Planets My Labrador Retriever, My Life as a Twin, My trip to Florida, The Environment, Disney World, My Life as a smaller brother, History of Cats, Life without Homework, Life with Two Older Brothers, Las Vegas, Smoking, My Baby Sister, My Rat, Martial Arts, Life with Step-Parents, Hair, Pets, My Life as a Dog, Addictions, Dolphins, Cats, Alzheimer's Disease, My Dad, Money, Horses, Bearded Dragons, My Grandparents Journey, Tornadoes, My Annoying Sister

Once you choose your topic, make sure it is not to large of a topic, or too small of a topic.  Ask the teacher.  Now it is time to make 5 sub-topics, which are categories on your topic that you can talk about for around 1 minute each.
2. Opening Statement  ( how you start out your speech)
Start with an "ear catching" opening such as:   
                use a quotation from someone famous
                ask a question
                state a fact
                promise something
                arouse suspense
                cite a poem, song
                 how about a joke?

3.  Now start writing out the details on each of your 5 sub-topics. Write about them in full sentences in your language arts notebook.

Don’t worry about spelling.

Don’t write your introduction or conclusion yet – you will do that at the end.

Read what you have written & time yourself. This will give you an idea of how much more you need to write to get within the time limit.
Read what you have written out loud to someone. Ask for feedback to make it more interesting.

Then write your Introduction & Conclusion.


Speak up!!!! Remember the people at the back of the room.
        Vary your pitch, tone and speed.

Gestures are important - use your face, your eyebrows, your shoulders, your hands.
Practice your gestures every time you practice your speech so that they become natural to you.
Don't overdo the gestures so that they become ridiculous.
You may not walk about - stay in one spot.
Props are not allowed.

Eye contact
Look at the audience - not the floor or the ceiling.
Don't look at your friends if they distract you.
You can look at your cue cards if you have not fully memorized the speech - but look up in between.
Don't just look at one person in the audience - but don't mechanically scan the audience side to side either.

Pause effectively

Practice your pauses. Leave a moment if you expect the audience to laugh.
Speak more slowly than you feel like. Being nervous makes you speak quickly & shortens the speech.

Relax - stand comfortably
Be aware of nervous mannerisms and eliminate them.

Let your face reflect your emotions
Happy Talks - Look Happy! Serious Talks -Look Serious.

Cue Cards
Write your speech out in full sentences on cue cards.
        Don't have half a sentence on 1 card and the 2nd half on the other card. Start a new cue card if the sentence won't fit.
        Write only on one side of the cue cards. Number them. Clip them together with a ring.
Practice with your cue cards.
If you practice enough, you will end up memorizing most or all of your speech. Don't rewrite your cue cards just before you give your speech.


Do not finish your speech with "The end".
This is your last opportunity to influence your audience.
A clear, short, strong, positive ending is best.

Saying your Speech in Front of the Class
You may use cue cards. Your speech should be written out in full sentences. Only write on 1 side of the card. That way you won't get confused by shuffling the cards. Connect your cards with a paper clip, a ring or a small chain so that the cards don't go out of order should you drop them.
Speeches will be evaluated on:

Content/Information, Interesting, Voice, Eye Contact with Audience

Practicing saying your speech
The best way to practice is to say your speech out loud in the largest room in your house. The reason for this is so that you will speak loud enough to be heard at the back. No matter how good your speech is, if nobody can hear it, it will be a poor speech.
Practice, practice, practice – keep reading your speech out loud over & over again. After a while you will have it almost memorized. Remember to look up at the audience.
Most common problems with speeches – some advice
Print out your speech on cue cards neatly – you need to be able to read your speech without putting the card to your nose.
Only write on 1 side of your cue card. Most speeches are about 5 or 6 cards long. Hole punch in top left corner of the cards & link them with string.
Slow down. Most people speed up when they are nervous.
Look up at the audience. Don’t look only at a friend or the person who might make you laugh.
Speak loudly. Throw your voice to the back of the room. Move your lips when you speak.
You will be standing behind a desk or podium when you present. Don’t lean on the podium. Don’t swing your legs.
Don’t sway from side to side.
Make sure you pronounce all of the words in your speech correctly – especially place names or scientific terms.
Don’t act nervous even if you are. You are on stage from the moment you get up till you sit down in your seat. Don’t let the audience know if you made a mistake. Just keep going.
Vary your voice. Exaggerate your voice – you are acting. Speeches are larger than life.