Speech: Public Communications
Tutor: Andrea Merboth
Email: agmerboth@gmail.com
Length: Full Year Class Period:  Thursday, period 2

Description:  A vast majority of adults will contend that public speaking is one of their greatest fears. Of those who have some comfort in that area, not all are well-prepared and polished at speaking and certainly few are giving a Christian message; yet, the human language is one of the main methods God has chosen to use to reveal Himself to us. Prayer, scripture and praise all use words, and are our primary ways of communing with Him. Communication is also the primary way we interact with those around us. In CHAT's Speech & Communications class, we write and perform at least 4 main speeches, along with impromptu speeches, debate and other exercises. Speech at CHAT varies from most speech programs in that the words and wisdom of scripture will be used as the foundation for many of our speeches. This is a rare opportunity, since scripture is not typically used in the speeches for many communication programs, yet the finest speeches of all mankind have incorporated scripture: just check out the Gettysburg Address or JFK 2nd inaugural address, Martin Luther King Jr’ s I Have a Dream…..we can learn a lot from them. Also, I believe that there is no more valuable knowledge than scripture and no more critical time then the present world for that knowledge. Consequently, we will build our speech skills and elocution skills while we dig into secular and scriptural truths to convey our thoughts. The speeches we will do will help the individual to focus on one topic, surround that topic thoroughly, and yet reduce it to a manageable time frame. We will frequently present it to our group(s), building the polish that is needed so that the student is engaging to his or her audience. By polish, I mean the poise, volume and confidant manner of speaking that makes one an interesting speaker. Some of the speeches and exercises such as: debate; require some research as well as critical thinking and the ability to drive home good points with grace and love. Impromptu speeches will prepare the student for the most frequently used type of speech: on the spot. Other speeches we may do are: A Bible Verse, Storybook, Informational, Persuasive, dramatic duo’s, and Personal Interps.

Most of the students will participate in a rotation helping the teacher as a “Student Leader.” This means that they will assist in leading the class by leading speech activities, giving clear directions, respecting time limitations, and leading critique groups, and watching for students that may need help.

We will have some in room tournaments and hope to have some out of the building performances, so parents will need to be available to either judge or help drive one or two times per year.

Building Speaking skills is much like a sport, there are a lot of facets to it and it takes time, so please understand that a full year is required to really get the student developing their speaking skills, in fact, much improvement yearly can be seen in students who take 2 and even 3 years of speech.

Note:  New students may join at semester.  The 2nd semester will focus on debate and persuasive speeches.

Tutor: Andrea Merboth has a BA in Occupational Therapy. She has homeschooled 4 children and been a high school Sunday School teacher for ten years as well as a coach/leader in Bible Quizzing the last twelve years. For three years she was involved in the excellent Institute for Cultural Communicators (ICC) both in their speech/communications program and their debate program. She also has taught Speech for two years at the TRUTH Academy and has directed several plays, one-acts and skits, all which help to develop a student’s ability to speak in public. The comfort that Mrs. Merboth has in speaking in public was born out of her youth involvement as an assistant to a magician and later, to over ten years performing on stage with a band. Comfort on stage and before the microphone has opened many doors to Mrs. Merboth and proven that those who are comfortable, and skilled will be the voice that is heard in a crowd-something which is critical to reaching the hearts of generations of people to Christ.

Level: Grades 7-12
Prerequisite: None
Homework: There will be a new speech required about every 3-4 weeks as well as weekly homework to observe and respond to current or historical speeches.  In the second semester when we delve into debate, there will be weekly research  expected for about 3 weeks.
Text: Access to your Bible and a library/computer
Supplies: $10