Week 4: Building on Your Story

pic: http://blogs.nature.com/naturejobs/2013/02/17/how-to-communicate-your-work-through-stories/


Now you all have a solid personal motivation for your talk.  What we need to do now is expand on it.  We will find other examples, data, maybe a study or two.  Such support will reinforce the theme in your story and help others relate to it.  Showing the impact of an issue through data can also help your audience appreciate the importance of the issue.

By Feb 22:

  • Polished personal story – print out to hand in!  Use a rhetorical device.
  • Bring a laptop, ipad or device for doing a little research

Resources from last week:

Rhetorical devices – http://americanrhetoric.com/rhetoricaldevicesinsound.htm,




Gettysburg Address


I Have a Dream



Pleasing soft sounds – Euphony 

Look at the use of analogy in this article  – Is it really a bloodbath?  Then why say it?

Eleven tennis balls near a tennis court




Finessing your personal story

Today you helped each other work through your topics.  And you all observed that the underlying themes were similar: Be yourself; work hard; don’t worry about what other people are doing; be nice to animals. We just need to throw in the Golden Rule and we have covered most philosophical rules.  But that is exactly why we are drawn to these themes.  Just because we know them doesn’t mean they are easy to follow.  So a reminder or a re-frame from you is great!

For Feb 15:

  • A draft paragraph (or two) of you personal connection to your topic.  For you TED Talk this will turn into your opening hook and probably part of your conclusion.


Five Whys and the Lincoln Memorial

Five Whys and a Personal Problem



Week 2 (catchy titles this year)

By the end of class Thursday, you will have your topic and your personal story relating to that topic.  A powerful talk will come from an idea/event/theme that is meaningful to you.  If you don’t care about your topic, neither will your audience.

To dig down deep into your psyche we are going to use a troubleshooting technique used by manufacturing plants around the world.  We are going to use the 5 Whys. It is exactly what it sounds like and we will play around with the idea in class.  Just bring your topic ideas.

Think First, Organize Later.

Hobart Swan Teaching Village

For Feb 8:

  • 1 (or 2 or 3) mind maps of the topic or topics you are considering.  This can be what you did in class last week, a revision of that or a brand new mind map.


Mind Map examples from LifeHacker, using mind maps for brainstorming research paper topics, detailed instructions from Hobart Swan



Welcome Back!


Hello!  Time has flown.  I meant to have this up last week.  This semester you will each be preparing your own TED-type talk.  Class will be more like a workshop where you each bring your material and we all discuss.  Each week we will add another presentation element.

Our first week will be choosing a topic and learning to dissect TED talks. Looking forward to seeing you all Thursday!

For Feb 1:

  • Complete as many of the prompts as you can.  Responses can be one word, a phrase, or maybe, a sentence.  Treat it as a brainstorm session.  If a question or prompt inspires nothing, then skip it.  Move on.  I would like you all to have at least 6 answers by class time.  I think that will be doable.  See the topic prompts below.
  • Bring the name and speaker of a TED talk you really like.  If you do not have one, just watch a few and pick one to share with class Thursday.

Topic prompts

Class  Resources:

These do not need to be purchased.

Talk Like TED, Carmine Gallo. 2014

Designing Your Life, Bill Burnett & Dave Evans. 2016.