Vinh Truong, GBP student
(Left: A GBP student presents in front of the class. Photo by Ms. Tincher)
With senior year coming to a close, GBP students are preparing for their final CED. The CED is a presentation that allows students to hone their public speaking skills, a skill that is often utilized in the future. Being such an important skill, GBP focuses on oral communication as an essential part of the curriculum. It is is one of the major skills that is assessed in almost all major projects. It is incorporated into the curriculum and is a skill that is further developed over the course of senior year.
As you may know, a CED is a “Current Event Discussion”; it allows a student to take a story that relates to Boston (most commonly a news article) and present it to the class. After a topic is chosen most students prepare notes or practice before presenting to the class. This often translate into a stronger and fluid presentation. CED’s are completed once a term and underlie our oral communication practice. During the presentation the audience completes a “Feedback Form” and the presenter is recorded. The Feedback From the allows the audience to write comments during the presentation. Comments often provide feedback on what needs to be improved and what the presenter did well. The audience also grades components of the CED which include: content/organization, verbal skills, and nonverbal skills. By reviewing both materials the presenter is able to better understand what needs to be improved.
Personally, CED’s have been extremely useful to help me prepare for future. It allows me to refine skills and learn new practices that make public speaking easier. For example, before a CED I often prepare notes or general points that I would like to present before my audience. This allows me to better organize my content so that it is logical and the audience understands my topic. It also improves the pace at which I speak at. Knowing my content I feel more confident speaking, more confidence often produces better verbal clarity and pace while reducing the amount of fillers (likes and ums).
Now on the fifth round of CED’s students have vastly improved from the first one. Numerous presentations, such as those for the “Biggest Change Project” and “Propaganda Project,” have allowed students to refine their skills in public speaking and understand what aspects they still need to improve. Presenting in front of a class numerous times acts as practice, with effort oral communication can only improve. From my own experience: eye contact, body language, and verbal clarity are main sources of problem when presenting. I believe this is mainly because insufficient preparation and quality notes. With practice and notes you spend less time thinking of what to say and maintain better eye contact. Preparation only improves quality of your presentation and oral communication. Throughout my time at Needham High School, GBP is seemingly the only class that emphasises the importance of oral communication. In nearly every project there is an some sort of aspect of oral communication that allows me to improve. In my opinion GBP is an excellent class to take to refine these skills for the future.
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