Students Evaluate the Midterm Speech Students from Kookmin University in Seoul, Korea, report about their experiences writing and presenting a speech about their lives in front of their classmates for the midterm exam.
-“Excellent! I love the style of this class. We never had any anxiety about the mid-term. Thank you, teacher. I’ll miss you!”
-“I’m very shy, and it was hard to present my speech in English, so the mid-term gave me the chance to improve my English skill and also to change my attitude.”
~ I learned how to use English language naturally. This is the most important and valuable thing that I learned in this class. Whenever you saw that I incorrectly wrote or spoke English with my own words, you corrected me. Most of them were about collocation, and natural usage. I found that my writing and speaking is too complicated and unnatural for people to understand. After this midterm speech and a series of valuable feedback on my writing, I realized it’s essential to use simple easy English rather than complicated words or phrases.
~ Giving a speech in front of an audience was a very good exercise. I have given many presentations in Korean, but not in English. This time was special.
~The preparation for the midterm speech helped me a lot. After finishing the midterm speech, I felt like my English skill had improved a lot in a short time. Frankly, I couldn’t have accomplished this if there hadn’t been an intensive midterm speech. It was really helpful. I would like to thank you for helping us.
Making a Speech
Whenever I get this kind of homework, I’m very nervous. Having to give a speech in front of many people and to memorize it, especially if it’s in English, is much harder than if it were in Korean.
I don’t want to talk about just usual things. I want to show what’s real, and who I am, so choosing the subject was also difficult. My artwork is like myself, it has my thought and feeling, so I decided to talk about that.
I’ve been learning English for over ten years, but it’s still difficult and I’m not good at writing and speaking. When I got the first draft of my speech back, and saw all the red marks, I was a little bit shocked. I made so many mistakes! I spent a lot of time trying to write correct English, but it wasn’t easy. We have different expressions in Korea and America, and sometimes I used a mixture of Korean and English (we call that Konglish).
I must say to my teacher thank you so much. She corrected my poor speech three times, and because of her effort now I feel I know it more than before. It was a good chance to gain confidence, which will affect my life. This opportunity helped me to have good and proper English and taught me how to give a speech to people. I’m sure that it will be helpful in my future career.
Reflection on Giving a Speech
‘Giving a presentation’ is always hard work but also a good chance to improve the quality of English. I really think it is. I learned writing skills, speaking skills, and listening skills as well. Although I was so nervous about it, I learned a lot.
When I first wrote the story for this presentation, I made many mistakes. It involved very easy grammar problems and more technical problems. For example, I wrote ‘things to talk’ instead of ‘things to say.’ Using slang and abbreviations was also wrong. For example, u for you, and uni for university. It was also hard to speak in front of many people. I kept laughing and trying to make a joke. Honestly, I was terribly embarrassed. I think I should work on that as my teacher mentioned. I had a really useful time in this class and I’ll keep doing my best.
~I really liked the way we did our midterm oral exam. Talking about myself in front of everyone helped me gain courage about speaking English and improve my writing skills. I also learned many things about life and my classmates by listening to their stories. I think this is the best way to develop a student’s English skills.
I’m keen about learning this kind of speech skill because when we work for a company or find ourselves in society, this experience can be very valuable to us. By giving a speech I learned how to express my thought to other people as well as the process of making a speech. The midterm speech was really exciting and made me feel enthusiastic, so I really appreciate it.
I believe the speech should be essential for an advanced class, and also in every English class. Giving a presentation is so valuable. Most of all, it helped me to gain confidence to deliver a speech.
The midterm presentation was a great experience for me. I became more comfortable to speak in front of an audience. I think it should be included in the English conversation curriculum because it teaches so much about speech. Presentation skills are essential but unfortunately our education system is lacking in this area. Therefore students face difficulty when they have to speak in front of an audience. This assignment, however, allowed students to learn the skills that they need. In my case, I learned so much about delivery, voice, posture, eye contact, pronunciation and dress code. These are the lessons that I believe should truly be taught in schools.
-The most important thing I learned from this speech was the importance of considering the listener or reader. Before taking this class I didn’t really care about the readers, but now I realize how important it is that the audience understands what you’re saying. For example, now I try to include details so that the reader can understand my story more easily.
-In my first draft I didn’t divide my writing into paragraphs. I learned that using paragraphs helps the reader to read more easily. I really appreciate the chance to learn all kinds of things I never knew before taking this class.
-In our class, the midterm exam was a speech. I think it was very effective because it gave me an opportunity to speak in front of an audience. That’s not a common opportunity. I practiced several times before the speech, and I had to get dressed up. We had to consider eye contact, posture, pronunciation and memorization, too. All these things were a burden for me. However, it was a very helpful experience. If I ever have to speak in front of many people again, I will never be nervous, thanks to this experience. In the process, I think the most effective way is practicing. I practiced my speech in class in front of other students. For that reason, I felt at peace when I gave my speech.
-It’s very important to develop our speaking skills. I was very happy to learn not only about delivery skills, but also the mechanics of basic writing such as punctuation, capitalization and using conjunctions. At the beginning I wrote my sentences freely. However, after several revisions, I understood my mistakes. Korean students all have common writing errors, and I was especially interested in that. The whole process helped me a lot, so I think this kind of activity should be done more often.
–First of all, I must say I liked the Midterm Exam. I learned a lot during the whole process. During the preparation of the speech draft, the professor helped me modify it many times until it was absolutely correct. I felt a little regret that my writing is not so good because my English level limits the expression of my opinions.
-Though I felt a little nervous in the beginning, it didn’t stop me from enjoying it. I believed all the speakers would feel more or less nervous, so all I could do is try to show my confidence and mask my nervousness with a smile and gestures. The interesting thing was that I thought I would forget the speech content, but when I stood on the stage and saw the expectation in my classmates’ eyes, I forgot all my nervousness. At that time, all I thought of was expressing the ideas in my mind as naturally as possible.
-As I mentioned in my speech, we have many kinds of contests on our Chinese campus, including speech contests. However, I’ve never participated in one because I didn’t have the confidence to do well. After this wonderful experience, I’d like to enter a speech contest, either in English or Chinese. I regard it as the best way to cultivate my confidence and ability to express myself. Thank you for this chance to develop my potential.
-On top of everything, I was able to practice making a presentation in English in front of people. It was my first time making a presentation in English, so I practiced a lot and memorized almost the whole speech. Memorizing helped me to improve my speaking skill. I felt like I got better at English because I could speak fluently what I had memorized. It gave me a lot of confidence.Honestly it was not so easy to write a speech in English, so I had a hard time. However, it was very valuable because our professor corrected all our mistakes. I realized from that what my common errors are, and learned many things. Most of my mistakes are ones I make all the time, and so this helped my everyday speech as well.
It was a valuable experience preparing the speech. Actually, it’s very difficult to get this kind of chance, even if I pay for it. Our professor is so passionate, and that encouraged me to do my best. Since I came back to Korea, I’ve rarely had an opportunity to use my English, but I was able to practice in the class and while I was preparing for the speech.
When I signed up for this class, I felt kind of worried because I knew there would be many good English speakers. However, the way our professor taught us and the kind of assignments she gave us led us to do our best, and she cared for the students who didn’t have great English as well as those who did. (서창교)
I felt a lot of things about this mid-term speech. The purpose of taking this English conversation class was to improve my language ability. I’m not very good at English because I’ve never been abroad to study. For this reason, the midterm speech helped me a lot. To prepare a good speech, I first had to write a good essay. However, I didn’t know when to use conjunctions until I joined this class. I’ve learned I have to use detail, and write longer sentences to make a natural rhythm. If you hear only short sentences, you won’t be able to concentrate on my speech. The last thing I felt about this essay is confidence. (황진오)
-The speech was really valuable. I never had the experience of thinking about one topic and writing about it. It was very impressive to make a completed work with the professor’s correction step by step. This exam made me think about my life. In high school I was always so busy memorizing things that I didn’t have a chance to think about my past life. This was also a valuable thing about the midterm speech. At first, my introduction was very short. My professor pointed that out. The beginning of the speech should prepare the audience to listen. It shouldn’t be too long or too short and it should present the topic naturally. (이은용)
-I thought the Self-Introduction speech for our midterm was great. It gave me an opportunity to look over my life and write about it. That was nice because I don’t usually do this kind of writing. This was only the second time that I have delivered a speech in English, and it was a really good and valuable experience. I learned about speaking naturally and using eye contact. I especially liked the dress code. Wearing formal clothes made me feel that I was giving a real speech.
I think this English class taught by Professor Debacker was very helpful. Not only did we learn English, but we also got to talk to our classmates and share our thoughts and get close to each other, which rarely happens in other classes. I especially liked how Mrs. Debacker plays instruments such as the 소고 and the guitar. It was refreshing and fun. (허유빈)
-I liked the Midterm Self-introduction the most. As I said in my speech, this was the first time I have ever given a speech in English. Although I felt so nervous, it was such a great opportunity to introduce myself and look back over the past. This experience has planted confidence in me, and will be a happy memory in my university life. I appreciate this chance to prove myself.” (정민정)