Estabrook Oratorical Society 4

Estabrook Elementary School in Ypsilanti has had an oratorical society for the last three years. The students who participate do some research and select a speech that they like. Sometimes they are poems or passages from a book, other times they are famous speeches. They learn about the original writer/orator and learn the speech. They meet weekly from October through February and then do a presentation for the whole school and then again for parents. During their meetings they learn public speaking techniques and present their speeches for each other. The club has been organized by Estabrook teacher Debbie Wilbanks who was also assisted this year by fifth grade language arts teacher Kelly Brzak. The members of the Ypsilanti High School Key Club also volunteered and helped coach the kids and were a big help. Max has been participating in the group for three years and this year he selected a speech delivered by legendary radio and television journalist Edward R. Murrow to the 1958 Radio and Television News Directors Association meeting. If you saw the movie Good Night and Good Luck, this was the speech shown at the opening and closing of the film. This year’s presentation took place on February 13, and all the kids did a great job. I taped the presentation and I finally got the edited version uploaded to The video runs about 35 minutes and is a 300MB file so please be patient.

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4 thoughts on “Estabrook Oratorical Society

  • Ellie_b

    Andrew Schwartz has also been in the oratorical society since the beginning. I’ve always been impressed with Max’s selections… and the other kids too! Estabrook provided a lot of good experiences for the kids, oratorical society being one of the best. After reading a little on your site, I can see why Max always had some cool speeches!

  • Sam Post author

    Thanks for the comment. Along with Andrew and Max several kids have been in the Oratorical Society from the beginning, including Mollie Gross, Aaron Willbanks and I believe Christopher Saviddes whose family owns Tower Inn. Estabrook is indeed a great school, with an awesome staff. Hopefully with people seeing stuff like the video I put up it will help improve the image of Ypsilanti and the Ypsi Public Schools. Ypsi schools are really underrated, and people who send there kids to charters really ought to take another look at our schools.