Waco Gem and Mineral Club, Waco, Tx

7.1 Oral Report


7.1: Oral Report

Every aspiring journalist is taught to answer six essential questions in covering a story: Who? What? Where? When? How? Why? You should teach your kids to consider these questions in delivering an oral report. This handy list helps them both to organize the report and to come up with ideas about what to say.

For instance, if they wish to tell about a field trip adventure, who went on the trip? What were they hoping to find, and what did they actually find? Where did they go? When did they go there? How did they find out about the collecting spot and/or how did they go about collecting there? And why might they recommend this site to others?

Or, a talk might be organized like a story, with a beginning, middle, and end. For instance, in describing a field trip, they might tell how they got the idea to visit a specific locality, then describe the trip itself, and end by showing what they found there. In telling how to do a particular lapidary project, they might describe the necessary tools, go through each step in the process, and end by unveiling the finished product.

In giving an oral report, it‘s important that the audience be engaged in ways that capture and hold attention. Good public speakers incorporate jokes to bring out smiles. In fact, they often begin their talks with a joke or an amusing anecdote to begin in an entertaining way. And, just like in a book, good illustrations can spice up the presentation, so kids should be encouraged to show or pass around specimens, to include maps, pictures or posters, or to otherwise visually reinforce what they‘ll telling the audience.

Finally a good way to end a talk is with questions and answers, so time should be left for the audience to ask questions or to share their own experiences.

Note: Because several other badges involve giving an oral report or presentation, kids can work toward earning their Communication badge and other badges simultaneously. For instance, see Activities 1.7 (Rocks & Minerals), 2.4 (Earth Resources), 3.6 (Fossils), 4.5 (Lapidary Arts), 5.5 (Collecting), 9.3 (Leadership), 12.2, 12.3, and 12.4 (Gold Panning & Prospecting), 13.3, 13.4, and 13.5 (Gemstone Lore & Legend), 14.1 and 14.5 (Stone Age Tools & Art), 15.2 and 15.3 (Rocking on the Computer), 17.8 (Special Effects), and 19.5 (Reaching across Generations).