Historically, CLAS has published a refereed journal, Statement, and a monthly newsletter, Currents. We recently relaunched these publications:

Call for Manuscripts: Fall 2019, Teaching the Skills of Oral Communication

Erik Palmer writes in Well Spoken: Teaching Speaking to All Students, “ Teachers spend untold hours showing students how to communicate through writing. We have specific lessons about commas, capitalization, word choice, topic sentences, and so on, as we should.... In our experience, however, very few teachers specifically teach the skills needed to make [a] speech more successful. After the speech, we might give some comments as feedback, but that’s about it, right? Where are the specific lessons about hand gestures, analyzing the audience, or using pacing for emphasis?” (Well Spoken, 6-7)

We want to know what you do to teach the skills of oral communication. Caution: All teachers have oral activities. We make students talk. But making students talk is not the same as teaching students how to speak well. We don’t want to see your assignments (having students recite poems after the poetry unit, presenting book shares, and so on). We’d like to see how you prepare them to do those activities well. How do you teach the difference between an essay to be read and a speech to be delivered? What lessons do you have to teach eye contact? Effective gesturing? Changing pace to enhance the words?

How do you address all facets of speaking? How do you teach informal speaking: class discussions, sharing, one-to-one? How do you teach formal speaking? Many of the experts tell us our students need to communicate for authentic audiences and authentic purposes. How do your speaking activities address these? How do you use the tools available in our digital world? What tools do you use to have students practice speaking? What tools do you use to showcase/broadcast speaking? Vocaroo? Flipgrid? Glogster? What else?

Don’t let our ideas limit you. What we are hoping for is for you to share ways you are successfully teaching speaking. What’s working for you and your students? If you have another issue you want to share, we will welcome other topics as well.

Deadline: 31 July 2019

Email: Karen Hartman (

Please visit the National Council of Teachers of English Publications site for the many national journals they publish targeted to education level and specialty areas.