- PrincipiaWire - http://www.principiawire.com -
Seniors Shine at Annual Speeches
Posted By armin.sethna On February 2, 2012 @ 2:55 pm In Feature,School | No Comments
Once again, the graduating class at Upper School has inspired, amused, and moved the Principia community through a polished series of senior speeches. Delivered over several sessions by 76 seniors, the speeches were heard by appreciative audiences in Ridgway Auditorium from January 9 to 17.
Love, loss, airport layovers—you name it, our students had something to say about it. One could only marvel at the dedicated effort (and editing) that went into crystallizing into just a few sparkling minutes the myriad thoughts, experiences, and communication styles found among our large and diverse senior class.
The task of guiding the students was ably and joyfully taken on by English teachers Nancy Heimerl and Steven Henn, who are familiar with the challenges the students face—starting with defining a topic. “We spend considerable time discovering what it is they want to write about,” says Henn. “And then we focus on what the ‘take away’ message of each speech should be.” He and Heimerl aim to support students’ expectant listening for right ideas and to alleviate a feeling of pressure or of having to force a topic to work.
Of course, the biggest hurdle for many students is the fear of speaking in front of a large group. And this year, as always, they “met this challenge head on, and made some wonderful demonstrations,” Henn observes. With teachers ready to share an inspiring idea—such as Moses overcoming his own fear of “public speaking”—that is not surprising.
By far, gratitude for the role and contribution of family members and of the School topped the list of topics. Listeners were captivated by our students’ memories of childhood homes and holiday traditions, by their ability to overcome extremely challenging situations—such as the loss of a home in a fire or the passing of a young friend—and by their witty observations about family members, friends, and Principia staff and faculty.
The spiritual and character growth from participating in sports and artistic endeavors was wonderfully illustrated time and again as well—one of the deepest lessons being how to learn from failure or challenge. And occasionally, to laughter, a few students acknowledged that, perhaps, just perhaps, mom or dad does sometimes know best.
Article printed from PrincipiaWire: http://www.principiawire.com
URL to article: http://www.principiawire.com/2012/02/seniors-shine-at-annual-speeches/
URLs in this post:
 Watch the video about this year’s Senior Speeches: http://www.principiawire.com/2012/02/senior-speeches-2012/
Copyright © 2010 Principia Wire. All rights reserved.