Education is a widely debated topic in politics all around the world, and America is not difference. Politicians are always concerned about this topic, as they want to improve it by any means necessary. The education system determine a lot in the future society. The present students have to become those people, who can fill the positions in the society, and create a better one. They have to get to higher levels and compete with other countries’ educational systems and levels. But how does one speak to such a large group of children, teenagers and young adults about this important matter? In the speech ‘Prepared Remarks of President Barack Obama: Back to School Event’ held by Barack Obama September 8th 2009 in Virginia, Obama is concerned about education, and speaks generally about education and an issue following up on the topic. His main focus in his speech is that the students carry a responsibility for doing well in school, because it affects the society in the end. But what does he do, to make such a topic understandable for even children in kindergarten?
In the speech, he tries to explain the important matters of education to a wide range of people in widely ranging ages. His receivers and listeners is in fact students ranging from kindergarten to 12th grade, which is the main challenge for him to overcome. It is a difficult task for him to address these students, but Obama has a few tricks up his sleeve. Firstly, he speaks to the students as not only the President of the United States, but also as a fellow American or a peer. Secondly, he uses a simple and informal language, including lots of repetitions and related experiences that he uses to speak to their responsibility and feelings. Lastly, he uses examples including celebrities such as Michael Jordan and J.K. Rowling with the purpose of engaging his listeners.
His main challenge is the size of his receivers. In order to get their attention, he begins by speaking directly to them ‘Hello everyone ‘ how’s everybody doing today?(‘)’ . By using the informal language, he speaks as if he was one of them. He understands, respects and cares about their situation. Afterwards he shortly refers to one of his own experiences as a young child, where he lived in Indonesia with his parents, and his parents could not afford to send him to a public school, and therefore received extra lessons at home from his mom. He was therefore homeschooled at 4:30 am. Additionally, he also got into trouble and did stuff he would later regret. By sharing these experiences, Obama gains some ethos and receives credibility in their point of view. Therefore his message can easily reach his receivers.
...(download the rest of the essay above)