Student Activities

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The Speech & Rhetoric Program offers students in grades 1-12 the opportunity to master the art of speech and rhetoric through a well-structured program. It provides learning within a meaningful, real-world context based on biblical worldview principles, fostering collaborative learning within the student community. This adaptable program can be efficiently implemented in schools of any size or grade level. For detailed information, please refer to each tab.

 

Elementary (ACSI members and non-members): Purchase materials and resources to facilitate in-school programs.

Middle School (ACSI members only): Participate in the Digital Submission Talk-Style Challenge. Registration includes materials and allows for two submissions.

High School (ACSI members only): Take part in the in-person challenge at various locations. Registration includes materials and allows for two student participants.


 

 

 

Elementary Students

Voices of Tomorrow: Orator's Showcase

For Elementary School Students

Voices of Tomorrow is an in-school program that facilitates schools to lead grades 1-6 students to deliver grade-appropriate speeches related to an annual topic. The Showcase is designed with the goal of nurturing and enhancing the public speaking skills of elementary students within a biblical worldview foundation. It's an engaging opportunity for students to express themselves, build confidence, and make lasting improvements in their communication abilities.

This Challenge Module includes all the teacher/student materials needed to successfully implement this program within your existing curriculum, including:

  • Teacher Implementation Guide
  • Retrieval activities that help students access prior knowledge
  • Grade-level program adaptations
  • Biblical Worldview Implementation Guide with a Student Reflection Activity
  • Interactive activities to introduce each year's theme
  • Graphic organizers and infographics that aid students in speech development
  • Materials to support judges
  • Multi-School competition resources available in multiple formats (Google Forms & Microsoft Forms, Google Docs, Word/PDF)

Student Outcomes:

  • Demonstrate improved verbal communication, articulation, and clarity in expressing their thoughts and ideas.
  • Foster confidence in God's ability to guide us through difficult situations and to work through our nervousness to build assurance in articulating His truths.
  • Develop the ability to organize coherent thoughts, creating a well-structured speech with a clear introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Enhance student's active listening skills and ability to provide constructive feedback to their peers.
  • Encourage students to reflect on their speeches, identify areas for improvement, and actively work towards refining their communication skills.

Orator's Showcase:

The Orator's Showcase is the culminating event of The Voices of Tomorrow Speech Program, providing a platform for students to present their speeches and receive constructive feedback. The format for this day can be adapted to what fits your school's size and schedule, and the execution can be as elaborate as you choose, including elements like refreshments, parent/leadership audience, costumes/formal attire, surprise guest speakers, etc.

Learn More & Purchase

Middle School Students

Voices in the Middle: Empowered to Inspire

Digital Talk-Style Speech Challenge
For Middle School Students (grades 6-8)

Voices in the Middle: Empowered to Inspire is an online informative or persuasive talk-style speech video submission challenge. Based on Timothy 4:12, this program is designed for middle school students to empower them to understand how their voices can influence people of all ages. The goal is to encourage students to use their voices through a biblical worldview to positively impact our culture for Christ. Throughout the program, students will delve into the power of communication, from traditional spoken word to modern digital platforms.

Program registration provides schools with comprehensive preparation materials, including the necessary tools, to support their students in preparing for this video submission competition.

Step 1. Purchase this Talk-Style Challenge Module, which includes all the following materials needed to prepare students:

  • 2024-2025 Challenge Topic
  • Biblical Worldview & Purpose
  • Topic Preparation
  • How to Write an Informative or Persuasive Talk-Style Speech 
  • Researching Tips
  • Script Outline
  • Audience Engagement Techniques
  • Instructions on Creating a Visual Aid
  • Practice Materials
  • Peer Feedback Materials
  • Scoring Criteria
  • Fillable Certificates for Participants

Step 2. After completing the Voices in the Middle: Empowered to Inspire Challenge Module, schools will identify their top students and submit their videos for judging. The Challenge Module includes further details.

Biblical Worldview & Purpose:
Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity. Timothy 4:12

Learning to speak, articulate one's thoughts and ideas concisely, and use one's voice for influence should be a foundational aspect for all middle school students. In today's culture, where social media and texting reign, learning to articulate oneself through speech is slowly becoming a lost art. Being able to analyze and think critically and then convey those thoughts through speech is a purely human trait. As A.W. Tozer stated, "Thought and speech are God's gifts to creatures made in His image; these are intimately associated with Him and impossible apart from Him." It is also made clear in God's word that God gave humans this unique ability so that we could glorify Him, make Him known throughout the world, and be ready to give an answer for the joy that is in us. 

In essence, being in the middle implies being centrally placed. Due to this positioning, middle school students often have distinctive relationships with younger and older students. Voices in the Middle was created to empower these students to recognize how their voices can influence people of all ages to change our culture for Christ. 

 


High School Students

Voices Unveiled: Empowered to Lead

In-Person Challenge
For High School Students (grades 9-12)


Voices Unveiled: Empowered to Lead 
is a dynamic one-day, in-person symposium dedicated to apologetics. Tailored for high school students, this program provides students the opportunity to explore, refine, and engage collaboratively on various topics.

Voices Unveiled allows students to engage with apologetic leaders, exchange ideas, gain insights, and explore various perspectives. Participants will receive speech coaching and mentoring to elevate their writing and presentation skills. The symposium culminates in a speech exhibition, providing students with a platform to showcase their refined ideas.

Upon registration, comprehensive preparation materials will be provided. These resources aim to equip educators with the tools necessary to support their students in preparing for this event and ensure they feel confident about their student's readiness.

Objective:
Throughout the one-day symposium, students engaged in the ACSI Student Leadership and Learning Speech and Rhetoric Challenge will refine and deliver speeches in line with the 2024 theme. They'll also engage with apologetic leaders, exchange ideas, gain fresh insights, and explore diverse perspectives. Participants will benefit from tailored speech coaching and mentoring aimed at honing their presentation skills. The event culminates in a speech exhibition, providing a platform for students to showcase their refined ideas.

Biblical Worldview and Purpose:
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. 1 Peter 4:10-11

Learning to speak, articulate one's thoughts and ideas concisely, and use one's voice for influence should be a foundational aspect for all students. In today's culture, where social media and texting reign, learning to articulate oneself through speech is slowly becoming a lost art. Being able to analyze and think critically, and then convey those thoughts through speech, is a purely human trait. As A.W. Tozer stated, "Thought and speech are God's gifts to creatures made in His image; these are intimately associated with Him and impossible apart from Him." It is also made clear in God's word that God gave humans this unique ability so that we could glorify Him, make Him known throughout the world, and be ready to give an answer for the joy that is in us.

High school students are uniquely positioned to influence and lead. Through their gift of speech, these students can effect positive cultural change for Christ. Voices Unveiled: Empowered to Lead aims to equip high school students with the tools to influence and lead others in utilizing a biblical worldview to make a difference in this world.



 

Locations

 
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Student Leadership & Learning: Speech & Rhetoric from ACSI on Vimeo.

 

 

ACSI Student Leadership & Learning: SLL@acsi.org