Master public speaking skills and discover the power of your own voice.

Ford's Theatre offers teachers and students life-changing opportunities to learn the power of oratory. Our teaching artists work with you to build confidence in public speaking, performance and original writing skills.

Our programs offer a range of support and resources, including:

  • In-person and virtual student-centered instruction and coaching by professional teaching artist
  • Frameworks for teaching oratory, performance and original speech writing in the classroom
  • Community of educators dedicated to helping your students discover the power of their own voice

Oratory Programs

These powerful programs enable students and teachers to experience how the power of public speaking can communicate ideas and inspire others.

In the Classroom

Student Program

Local Residency and Festival

Every year, Ford’s Theatre gives local students the opportunity to perform one of Lincoln’s speeches on the historic stage. Each class prepares for the event with help from a dedicated teaching artist, who works with students on speech comprehension and performance during classroom visits. 

Professional Development

Teacher Program

National Oratory Fellowship

Fellows work closely with our teaching artists, staff and a network of educators to learn strategies to bring compelling and effective public-speaking into their classrooms. The fellows, along with selected student delegates, conclude the program by performing original and historic speeches on our historic stage.

In the Classroom

Distance Learning

Lincoln Online Oratory Project

In this distance-learning project, students learn a speech by Abraham Lincoln and the fundamentals of public speaking and performance. As a culminating project, the class performs the speech and creates a video of the performance to showcase their work.