Listening to Radio 4 TODAY recently, I was struck by a feature on ‘oracy’. Franky, I had never come across this word. But, as I listened, it became abundantly clear just what this meant. This single and vital word is at the very heart of the training courses provided by Eaglei.
It would appear that schools in particular are waking up to the importance of talking in class. Yes, talking in class; something that, when I was at school, was prohibited! Evidently, the charities Voice 21 and The English Speaking Union are campaigning for a greater focus on speaking and listening skill development in schools, also known as oracy – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04ft2lv
Talking, communicating, debating in schools are – or should be – central and key to every lesson. In my view, learning to speak properly is just as important as, perhaps more so, than Mathematics and written English. Indeed good verbal communication; the ability to articulate and express views and opinions are a barrier to social mobility for many people.
Furthermore, speaking fluently – even eloquently – is increasingly important in the business world and is a crucial skill particularly sought after by employers, both at the interview stage and beyond.
For many years, I have argued that the Government should make business and enterprise education a mandatory part of the national school curriculum. I also believe the same is true of communication skills. We have to empower our young people to have the necessary confidence and skills to communicate every day. They must be given the opportunity to regularly practice talking and communicating in class, in public, without fear of ridicule or reproach.
If you need help, support or training to improve how you express yourself or communicate your message more effectively please contact Duncan at Eaglei.