Speech Syllabus

Class Period:________       Printed Student Name: __________________________

          Oral/Written Communications

             More commonly known as

              SPEECH CLASS

Instructor – Diane Ward                e:mail: ward.diane@mail.fcboe.org 

Speech is a one-semester survey class of a variety of forms of communication We will explore many facets of communication including both verbal and non-verbal communication, the components of a well-written speech, the components of a well-delivered speech, the art of persuasion, and some of the elements of drama and debate.


What will we do in speech class?  The types of speeches students will prepare and deliver include a Speech of Introduction, an Informative Speech, a Demonstration Speech, a one-sided Persuasive Speech, a group Dramatic Performance using short stories read in class to write a script for the performance, and an Individual Presentation of a book read in class from which students will deliver a brief summary accompanied by a written or artistic product.


Depending upon the speech, speech preparation will include most or all of the following: research, organization of material, writing an outline and/or entire speech, creating a visual aid, and delivering a speech in front of an audience (i.e. the class). A written component must be turned in on the assigned due date for every major speech or project.    Students should always keep one copy of their speeches for themselves and turn one copy into me.  The copy I receive should be double-spaced 12 pt. Times Roman font.


Students who are not comfortable delivering a speech from memory with the use of note cards, may read from the original written product. HOWEVER, if a student chooses this option, students MUST have a double-spaced document with the font increased to at least a Times Roman 14 to 16 font size.  Otherwise, it will be very difficult for a student to make eye contact with the audience, a major component of delivery, during the delivery of the speech.

 Students should not delete anything speech-related from their student folders in the writing lab until the end of the semester.  In addition, a student should not throw away any handout or assignment until given permission from the teacher to do so.  Students should keep all graded tests and papers in their notebooks until the end of the semester.  We will refer back to assignments and students will need certain assignments to help them study for Major Tests and the Final Exam.  

What supplies will students need?  Students will need a 1” to 2” three ring binder note book with side pockets, paper, pens, pencils, highlighters and at least 30 index cards.  If at all possible, please provide your child with a flash drive so that he/she may take work from the writing lab to home and from home to the writing lab if necessary.


How is work graded in speech class?  Major grades (which constitute 45% of the final average) include major speeches and tests.  Daily grades (40 % of the final average) include participation grades posted every six weeks, open book quizzes, vocabulary assignments, and other class work as assigned,  Effort, participation, and a positive attitude are integral factors in the participation grades.  Participation points are awarded for the student’s effort, staying on teacher-assigned task, and cooperation.  Points may be deducted for lack of the same.


The remaining 15% will come from the final exam.  Students who meet eligibility requirements for exempting the exam may opt to exempt the exam.  (See student handbook for details.) 

 Important:  Students will know the due dates for the written final product of their assigned major speeches at least a week in advance.  There is no excuse for lack of preparation.  Adequate time in class and/or in the writing lab will be provided for students to begin and finish all major speeches.  Again, a flash drive will be very helpful to those who may need additional time at home to work on speeches/visual aids. 

Corrections to Open Book Quizzes:  While all students have the opportunity to earn back half the points lost due to incorrect answers on open book quizzes by writing corrections to missed questions, any student who receives less than a 70 on an open book quiz must write corrections.  These corrections will be due the Monday following the return of the quiz.  Students making below a 70 on the quiz will be assigned to “Lunch and Learn” if corrections are not turned in on the Monday following the return of the quiz.    

Late Grades:  Ten points will be deducted for every day that the written assignment portion of a speech is not turned in.  These ten points will be deducted from a daily grade for the written portion of the assignment.  Two points will be deducted from the delivery of the speech for every day the written portion of the assignment is not turned in.  I will not accept Open Book Quiz corrections on any other day than the Monday after the graded quizzes have been returned in class. 

Make-up Work:  If a student misses class, it is the responsibility of the student to check the “Absent from Class” notebook as soon as he/she returns to class to get any assignments, handouts, or worksheets that were given during his/her absence.  Daily assignments such as Open Book Quizzes, Vocabulary Assignments, etc…will receive a deduction of 10 points off per day late after the grace period stated in the student handbook for make-up work.   

Textbook – Speech for Effective Communication : A textbook will be assigned to each student and should be taken home and kept there.  Together with your student, find a good spot for the textbook so that you or your child will know where to find it when necessary. (There is a class set of books for the classroom that we will use.)  If a student loses the textbook, the cost of replacement is $42.50. 

Rehearsing and Timing Speeches:  It is my expectation that every student will rehearse his/her speech prior to delivery in class.  Students should time their speeches to make sure they have met the required time limit. Not meeting the time requirement will result in 3-10 points deducted from the delivery of the speech, a major grade. 


Extra Credit:  Students who have a parent or guardian who will first read the speech and offer suggestions for changes, then time the speech as they listen to their child’s delivery of the speech, and then sign a teacher-provided form stating they have done so, will receive 5 points extra credit on the major speech.  

I am working on a website where class requirements, assignments and handouts will be listed.  I hope to have this up and running by the end of the week.  You may check this website at http://dianeward.educatorpages.com Please bookmark this page. 

If you would like to know immediately if your child is disrupting class, is not on task, or is late turning in a major assignment, please do the following: 

Send me an e-mail with your child’s class period and name—last name first, then first name with no spaces in the subject line.


For example if your child is Sally Smith in my fourth period class, send an email to ward.diane@mail.fcboe.org with this in the subject line:  4SmithSally


In the body of the e-mail, let me know if you are the child’s mother or father.  I will not open these e-mails until such time as I need to contact you, so if you have other concerns or questions, please send those in a separate e-mail with a different subject title in the subject line.


I look forward to working with and getting to know your child this semester.  This is a class that counts toward the HOPE and it is my desire to have all my students make an excellent grade in this class!


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