Thursday, June 29, 2017

Homeschool Review: Hewitt Homeschooling's Speech #hsreviews #homeschool

I teach a high school Speech class as part of our homeschooling support group every few years, so I couldn't wait to get my hands on Hewitt Homeschooling's Speech curriculum for 10th - 12th graders.  The Lightning Literature & Composition Speech Pack contains three separate resources.  They are the Speech Student Guide, the Speech Teacher Guide, and Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History.  Together, these lay great groundwork for an A+ speech class.

 Lightning Literature & Composition
Speech Pack
The Speech Student Guide is a 145-page, softcover, perfect bound book that is written directly to the student.  It contains 4 Units divided into 8 Lessons, an Introduction, and an Appendix.  The Lessons explain the hows and whys of giving a great speech and include suggestions for how to dress when delivering a speech, how often to practice so that you sound your best, how to read your audience, and how to prepare visual aids like charts and graphs so that your audience can follow along as you speak.  The Introduction explains why students should take the course, shares the importance of reading literature and learning how to write, and makes sure that students understand how to use the Student Guide.  The Appendix offers Discussion Questions for each lesson, additional reading options for each unit, and the course schedule.  Lightning Literature guides are designed to fill a semester of work at a time, but can be adapted to use for a full year.  Schedules are included for both one semester and full-year adaptation.

Student's Speech Tips

The Speech Teacher Guide is a 60-page, loose-leaf, stapled booklet that has been three-whole punched -- perfect to add directly to my school planning binder.  It shares information provided in the Student's Guide so that parents know what their children are studying and the answers to all of the comprehensive questions found throughout the Student Guide.  There are grading tips, checklists, and templates to aid you in assigning grades properly.  The semester and full-year schedules are included as well so that you and your student are on the same page at all times.  You can check out the picture below to see the difference for yourself.
Comparison of Semester and Full-Year Schedule
And then there's the pièce de résistance -- one of the neatest books I've seen in a while -- Lend Me Your Ears:  Great Speeches in History is a HUGE hardcover book (1157-pages) of some of the greatest speeches of all time compiled and introduced by William Safire.  There are speeches given by Daniel Webster, Fidel Castro, Thomas Jefferson, Winston Churchill, Richard Nixon, Jeane Kirkpatrick, George W. Bush, and more.  Students are instructed to read specific speeches from the book and then to answer comprehension questions for them.

This is a completely different approach to a Speech class than I have ever seen before.  Although they are writing speeches or parts of speeches, students are not required to actually give speeches. Students learn why reading and writing are important and they are given the opportunity to read and understand great speeches.  There are questions to keep in mind "while they read" and questions to answer after they have finished reading BUT there are also literary lessons that accompany each group of selected speeches.  Students are taught literary concepts, then they read speeches that give examples of the concepts they have just been taught.  This is all followed up with writing exercises (at least three papers for every unit with a requirement of 2 - 3 pages each) that tie in with the literary lessons.

In my Speech class, we focus more on the actual elocution of the assigned speech than on the literary and writing concepts behind it.  Students write speeches AND stand before the classroom to give speeches.  I teach them how to stand, where to put their hands, how not to fidget, and how not to pause awkwardly with "um . . . and" statements.  I have always required students to read, watch, and listen to famous or important speeches.  I love that I now have a collection of speeches from history to share with my students and I am excited to add more of a literary component to my teaching.  In years past, we have followed Speech class up with a Writing class, but Hewitt Homeschooling's Speech curriculum makes it easy for me to combine the two into one.

Although this course may not be what you typically think of when you think of a Speech class, it makes for a perfect course of study -- especially if your student is the only one at home.  It also makes for a great base for the traditional speech-giving class and is quite useful in a co-op type setting.  I like this course, friends, and am excited to be sharing it with my class.

Hewitt Homeschooling

You can see the nature of the course in the Table of Contents and even read a Sample Chapter to get a great feel for the course.  Find out more about all of the wonderful Hewitt Homeschooling products through the following Social Media outlets:

Crew Disclaimer

I was given the opportunity to review Speech from Hewitt Homeschooling as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.   You can check out the Crew Review and see what other members of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of this curriculum and other resources we reviewed (or just click on the banner below.)

Hewitt Homeschooling {Reviews}
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