What do going on a European vacation, visiting Zion National Park, a soccer tournament in Vegas, and Christmas morning have in common? They were the subjects of the entertaining speeches delivered at Carmel Creek’s recent Speechmasters Graduation program.
Speechmasters is based on the Toastmasters International public speaking and leadership program (www.toastmasters.org), but caters to the 8-12-year-old. Twenty-one 4th graders eagerly show up every Friday morning, an hour before school starts, to deliver prepared speeches, give evaluations, and respond extemporaneously to impromptu questions. Each meeting is entirely run by the children, including the Toastmaster (M.C.), speakers, evaluators, table topics master, timer, “Um” counter, award presenter, and elected officers.
Public speaking and leadership competencies are essential skills that can help a child communicate clearly, listen effectively, and think on their feet. For those reasons, Mojgan Amini, Carmel Creek elementary school mom, runs the Speechmasters program at her children’s school.
“It’s amazing how enthusiastically the students embrace these valuable skills that will add to their success as adults,” Amini said. “Toastmasters has been instrumental in my life, and I’m glad these kids are getting a taste of it at an early age.”
The 12-week program ended with a graduation ceremony showcasing the participants’ new skills and recognizing their accomplishment on Jan. 24 at the Carmel Creek school auditorium. For information about the Solana Pacific Speechmasters program, contact the school, http://www.sbsd.k12.ca.us/cc/.