“Autumn Poem & Speech,” written by Norma Landa Flores, author of “Assessment of Oral Communication and Pronunciation Competency,” in “Teaching Oral Communication in Grades K-8, Allyn & Bacon Publishers, is available on digital download @teacherspayteachers.com~ “Autumn Poem & Speech,” is a 10 page Oral Communication and Pronunciation Lesson that features the poem entitled, “My Speech to Inform About Autumn” on page 2. Also, directions on how to pronounce [ ɔ ] & [ ɑ ] vowels are given at the bottom of page 2.
Page 3 contains “Multiple Choice Questions for Discussion,” and includes spaces for students to record their responses and values. Page 4 is the [ ɔ ] Lips Oval Low-Back to High-Central Area Voiced Vowel and [ ɑ ] Lips Open Low-Back Area Relaxed Voiced Vowel Pronunciation Assessment form with which students may take turns pronouncing and assessing each other. Page 5 is the Access, Assessment of Communication Competence and English Speaking Skills form. Students read the sentences on page 4 a second time and evaluate themselves on the observable communication behaviors of: eye contact, audibility, pronunciation, grammar, emphasis & communication of message function & intention.
Page 6 lists, “Contexts & Standards-Based Criteria for Assessing
[ ɔ ] Lips Oval Low-Back to High-Central Area Voiced Vowel and
[ ɑ ] Lips Open Low-Back Area Relaxed Voiced Vowel Pronunciation. These standards for speaking and listening were agreed upon by the National Communication Association Task Force on Speaking and Listening Skills of which the author, Norma Landa Flores was a contributing participant. Pages 7-10, is the Appendix with Suggestions for the Teacher/Facilitator to more easily teach an oral communication lesson creating relevancy due to the “Speech to Inform About Autumn” theme of this lesson.
This material is suitable for students in grades 6-8, 9-12 and Adult ESL. In addition, the content is very helpful for any age level student learning English as a Second Language or for Special Education students having difficulty pronouncing [ ɔ ] and [ ɑ ] or substituting one for the other. “Autumn Poem & Speech,” encourages verbal communication, cooperation and oral collaboration.
A wonderful bonus is that this poem serves as a sample for writing poetry, improving and assessing pronunciation and developing informative speech outlining skills too! Not only that but students learn that when one door closes an other door opens and changes may occur. Also that, some folks may be pessimistic about the future and feel melancholy about the past. But, with the help of our family, friends and neighbors, we can harvest our crops and happy memories to sustain us through the long winter to come. That’s what this autumn speech communication lesson is all about, honoring the past and celebrating changes for the future.
Norma Landa Flores is also the author of “Pronunciation & Communication: Oral Skills for Speakers of English as a Second Language,” McGraw Hill/Primus Publishing & “Street Corner Flight,” in Mirrors & Windows: Connecting with Literature Grade 6, EMC/Paradigm Publishing.