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Public Speaking Assignment Ideas

By Kim Jaworski, Homeschool Resource Specialist

Public speaking always seems to feel so awkward and forced. Here’s an idea for a little practice in this area that makes it a lot more fun and works with or without an audience in the room.

Create your own TV show! A cooking show format, a how-to program, a news broadcast, a game show, sports commentary or an interview format. Whatever your child is drawn to can be easily adapted. Or try some of each! Scripted or off the cuff, depending on the age of the child, you can be as elaborate with this project as you care to be. Then watch your video and jot notes about changes you’d like to try (more looking at the camera, more close ups of the project, talk slower, etc).

Organize the necessary materials and make the presentation in an orderly fashion with the necessary voice overs. Be sure to do a few practice runs, but it can’t hurt to have the camera rolling even for rehearsals. Computers make video editing a manageable project, and you can even have a laugh at your blooper reel. With digital cameras and phones able to capture video, you can do your show in short segments so everyone can remember their lines and string it all together.

My kids got hooked on this type of project after watching the bonus features on a few DVDs. They loved the behind the scenes interviews, the “how it’s made” documentaries and the blooper scenes. I’m sure this all lead to their teen volunteering at our community cable station.

If you’re part of a homeschool co-op, you can even encourage other families to create their own entries and have an independent film festival!

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