Speech class is helping the students

Allyssa DeHosse, Reporter

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Dina Shipley is the speech teacher at Princeton Community High School. She has been teaching for nine years, she said.

Shipley says that speech should be required because its is important to know how to communicate well.

“Speech has helped me get every job I’ve ever been interviewed for, except one,” she said.

She said she enjoys speech for a variety of reasons.

“Watching students grow at work, watching them learn more, and watching someone who thinks they can’t do it, succeed,” Shipley said.

Shipley didn’t go to college until she was 30, she said.

When choosing her occupation, she had to really think about what she wanted. She said she knew her favorite thing was speech class in high school, and she really liked teens.

The main difficulties she said she faces are when students are convinced that they cannot do it.

Shipley said, to help students not be so nervous during speeches, they start slowly, they do group work, they work on coping strategies, eye contact, and breathing.

Also, Shipley says she sometimes offers for the student to give a speech in front of her and one other person.

“Speech helps you on interviews, communication, organize thinking, hide nervousness, and be more confident,” she said.

At PCHS, speech has been mandatory for more than ten years, said Principal Steve Hauger.

Tori Matthews is a senior at PCHS, who takes advanced speech.

She said her favorite thing about speech is getting to talk about her point of view on topics. She said her least favorite things are speaking on stage for the Veteran’s Day program and getting nervous during big events.

One thing she said she’d learned from Speech is keeping an open mind about a topic or opinion.

“For me, speech is important because I’m not shy, but I’m not social, and it helped me,” she said.

During the Veteran’s Day program, she was nervous; but the class practiced more, which helped her feel better about it, Matthews said.

In speech class, Matthews said they have done persuasive, researchers, changes in policy, monologues, and acting stereotypes speeches.

If she could change anything about speech class, it would be not overlapping assignments, a few more group speeches, and no more five key word outlining.

Lexi Melgoza is a PCHS student, who took speech her sophomore year.

She doesn’t like getting up in front of people, she said. Shipley helped her overcome that fear by practicing more speeches.

“I don’t think speech should be mandatory,” Melgoza said.

However, even though she did not enjoy speech that much, Melgoza said Shipley taught her how to write an essay properly. If Melgoza could change speech, she would lessen the amount of projects due, “she said.