By Boyd C. Allen

Pilot Staff Writer

Brookings-Harbor High School (BHHS) speech students in Gregory Scott’s dual-enrollment class performed GREG Talks on stage at The Chetco Pelican Players Theater recently while educating their peers, parents and the public.

The talks were videotaped and posted in the “news” section of the BHHS website, along with the school’s video-news and newspapers.

Brig Schofield and Nathaniel Barnard offered GREG talks – Growth, Reflection, Education and (a class neologism and play on “gregarious”) Gregarity Talks – in the first episode. GREG talks imitate the popular TED talks. They chose this assignment instead of the more traditional persuasive or instructional speeches usually performed for a grade.

Schofield warned the audience about assuming motivators and goals when dealing with adolescent athletes, noting athletes with different motivators have different goals and attitudes about training and competition. For example, an athlete motivated by camaraderie will not train with the same intensity as an athlete focussed on winning or gaining a scholarship, and parents and friends should be aware of the athlete’s goals in order to properly communicate with them about a sport.

Barnard discussed nature, the human body and brain and biomimicry during his time. He explained how scientists had begun using the human body and mind as the guideposts for future design and cited the brain’s ability to move and use immense amounts of data as a reason to consider the brain a model for the design of future computers.

Biomimicry is an approach to innovation that emulates nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies and encourages the design and production of materials, structures and systems modeled on biological entities and processes, according to the the Biomimicry Institute.

The BHHS college speech class — taught in conjunction with Southern Oregon University — purposely provides opportunities for non-traditional and real-life ways for students to engage in public speaking, according to Scott. Students often perform speeches as common as toasts or eulogies, but also engage in presentations to the city council or the school board. They might also offer a GREG talk or introduce a speaker.

All these options are presented outside the classroom, Scott said, and are things you will be asked to do at some point in life.

“It’s a smorgasbord or buffet,” he said.

Students gain valuable skills by working on the lighting, sound and videography behind the scenes, as well, according to BHHS computer technician and teacher Dane Tippman.

“The ability to manage equipment, run cables, test microphones and operate cameras applies to career fields such as the film industry, music production, radio and entertainment,” he said.

Tippman supervises students using equipment provided by Curry County Voices, a non-profit organization that helps students and school staff produce programs such as the GREG Talks and Bruin News.

Future GREG talks will be held April 23 and May 7 and May 21; all begin at 6:30 p.m. at the Chetco Pelican Players theater and are open to the public.

Reach Boyd C. Allen at ballen@currypilot.com

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