For many kids, giving a public speech can be very nerve-racking. By allowing students to research and discuss things that are of interest to them, you can get students excited about the assignments and help ease some of their nerves. There are several topics for sixth and eighth graders to choose from that will help them feel more motivated and energetic about giving their speech.
The Care of Animals
Many kids love talking about their pets. Offer a topic in which students can discuss in depth the care of certain animals they may own. For instance, if a student lives on a farm and raises horses, he can talk about a day's process of caring for his horses and the tasks involved, such as feeding, grooming, washing, riding and veterinarian care.
History of Inventions
Allow students the opportunity to research the history of something that they find interesting. For instance, a student might want to research the history of an invention, like the aeroplane, and give a little background information on the Wright brothers and their influence on flying. Other students may want to research the history of a sport, such as football, and even give a little bit of history about their own school's athletic team.
Give students a chance to discuss a book they really enjoyed reading. Perhaps students were asked to read a novel for a book report previously in the semester, or maybe students have a favourite story of their own they'd like to talk about in their speech. Ask them to share what the story was about and to discuss the author's background and why they think the author chose to create such a story.
School or City History
Students might be interested in researching the history of their school or even the history of their town. This will also give them a chance to practice interviewing people who would be able to provide them with accurate information for their research, such as the school principal or librarian or individuals at the town's historical society. Students can even narrow down their research by focusing on one historical aspect of their school or town, such as the history of the school logo or the history of any landmarks or features located within the town.