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Public Speaking Tools

Public Speaking Tools 2
4H 970R ools for Public Speaking T A Guide for 4H Members ▼▼ Tools for Public Speaking ▼ A Guide for 4H Members ▼ ▼ Authors: Judith A. Villard, Extension Agent, ▼ 4H Youth Development, Richland County, OH Eva Weber, Extension Agent, 4H Youth ▼ Development, Lorain County, OH ▼ Reviewer: David M. Farrel, Extension Associate 4H Youth Development ▼ Graphic Designer: Mary A. Hoffelt ▼ ▼ 4H Public Speaking Opportunities Going Beyond in Public Speaking ▼ Basic public speaking opportunities in More advanced 4H public speaking ▼ 4H include: opportunities include: • giving a demonstration or • being a camp counselor ▼ illustrated talk • CarTeens ▼ • Health Safety Public Speaking • being a style revue commentator ▼ Contest • announcing a show at a county fair ▼ • Health Safety Skit Contest • taking on 4H ambassador or • assuming the role of an officer promotion roles ▼ • giving a committee report at • becoming a peer mediator ▼ a meeting • speaking to civic groups about 4H ▼ • leading and teaching recreation • emceeing a program ▼ • leading pledges • participating in radio/TV interviews ▼ • teaching a 4H workshop or clinic ▼ All educational programs conducted by Ohio State University Extension are available to clientele on a ▼ nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, ▼ gender, age, disability or Vietnamera veteran status. Reprinted 7/02—1.5M—197959 ▼ Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the ▼ U.S. Department of Agriculture, Keith L. Smith, Director, Ohio State University Extension. ▼ ▼ ▼ Printed on 100 PostConsumer Waste Paper 2 ▼ ▼▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ Tool 1: Getting Started... ▼ Determine Your Present Skill Level and Going Further ▼ To help determine your present skills in public A good public speaker is made, not born. Being speaking, answer the following questions: ▼ able to speak well in front of the public is a skill • Why have I been scared to speak in ▼ available to everyone. Good public speakers public carry positive attitudes such as these: • It is more difficult to speak in some ▼ ▼ You can if you think you can situations than others. For example, you ▼ ▼ Winners never quit; quitters never win may find it easy to tell friends about your vacation, but difficult to question a ▼ When the going gets tough, the tough ▼ teacher about a bad grade. In which get going situations do you speak more freely, and ▼ Learning good public speaking skills will benefit in which are you more reserved you throughout your life. Good public speakers ▼ • Past experiences often determine how have learned the right skills and put them into comfortable you are speaking to a group. practice. ▼ On which past experiences would you This publication teaches you about nine basic draw to present a demonstration, ▼ tools for public speaking. Learn how to use these participate in a club meeting, or become tools, practice them, involve yourself in 4H ▼ a camp counselor public speaking opportunities, then “jump • What public speaking goals will you set beyond” to outside public speaking ▼ for yourself this year in 4H How about opportunities. These opportunities are identified ▼ next year, or in 5 years, or as an adult on page two of this publication. 3 ▼ ▼▼ Tool 2: ▼ Know Your Subject If you are going to give a talk, you must choose ▼ a topic. You also need to consider whether the ▼ purpose of your talk will be to inform, persuade, instruct, entertain, or inspire your ▼ audience. Here are questions to ask yourself as you choose a topic: ▼ • Am I interested in this topic ▼ • Is it interesting or useful to others ▼ • Does it have one main idea • Can I find enough information ▼ about this topic ▼ • Can I cover the topic in the time allotted for my presentation ▼ • For a demonstration: Can this topic be demonstrated clearly Does it involve ▼ action ▼ After you have selected your topic, learn as much as possible about your subject. Gather ▼ information from several different sources, such Tool 3: ▼ as your library, your local Extension office, your 4H project book, or by talking to an Know Your Audience ▼ authority on the subject. For example, if you In public speaking, knowing your audience is decide to speak on home fire safety, you could ▼ almost as important as knowing your subject. In ask your local fire department for a statistic on order to “know” your audience, consider asking ▼ the number of fires in your community last the following questions (and any others you can year. This information would encourage your ▼ think of) about them: audience to follow the fire prevention tips in • Who are they This information is your talk. ▼ called “demographics,” and would include age, sex, ethnicity, and other ▼ relevant statistics. ▼ • Where will you present (outdoors, in a gymnasium, at a banquet hall) ▼ • Why does the audience need this ▼ presentation How will it interest them What are they expecting ▼ • What change in knowledge or behavior ▼ do you intend to accomplish with the audience ▼ • What will the audience be feeling Are they likely to be energetic, relaxed, ▼ tired, hostile, or irritable at the time of ▼ your talk 4 ▼ ▼ ▼▼ The Introduction ▼ An introduction should capture the audience’s attention within the first 15 seconds. You can ▼ attract attention by asking a question, sharing a surprising statistic or fact, relating a personal ▼ experience, telling a joke or funny story, or ▼ showing an unusual object. Your introduction also should inform the ▼ audience of your topic and what you hope they might learn from your presentation. Avoid ▼ sharing your name, age, and club in your ▼ introduction if you have already been introduced. ▼ ▼ The Body The body is the “meat” or “heart” of your talk. ▼ There are many ways to organize the body of ▼ your talk, including the following: Tool 4: ▼ Be Creative Clearly Numbered Points ▼ Example: “There are seven points to follow in Creativity in public speaking helps to capture the safe use of extension cords. Number one...” and maintain the attention of the audience. ▼ Through creativity, you can personalize a talk and “make it yours.” Cause and Effect Reasoning ▼ Creativity begins by selecting a catchy title for Example: “The numberone killer of youth age ▼ your talk. The title arouses the interest of the 16 to 20 is vehicular accidents. What causes this audience. A title should both inform and arouse tragic loss of life” ▼ interest. Following is an example of an ▼ acceptable title, and a better title: Chronological Relay of Information Acceptable: “How to Groom a Steer” Example: ”First, cream the margarine and sugar. ▼ Better: “Steering in the Right Direction” Then ...” ▼ Other ways to add creativity to your talk include However you choose to organize the adding posters or visuals (if permitted), and information in the body of your talk, you will ▼ variety in your speaking style and delivery. need to move smoothly from one point to the next. Transitions are the words or phrases that ▼ accomplish this smooth movement from point Tool 5: ▼ to point. The words “first,” “second,” “next,” Organize Your Information and finally” bridge the points in your talk. ▼ Also, organizing your thoughts so that related Your presentation should have a central theme, thought are grouped together helps a talk flow ▼ which includes several main points stated in a smoothly. logical sequence. Any talk has three basic parts: ▼ 1) Introduction ▼ 2) Body 3) Summary and closing ▼ 5 ▼ ▼ ▼▼ • Voice—vary the pitch and volume of Summary and Closing your voice and the speed at which you The final section of your talk should include a ▼ speak. Speak with a sincere tone. summary and closing. The summary reminds Clearly pronounce your words and use ▼ your audience of your main points. Reemphasize good grammar. As you speak, use what you want them to remember or what action ▼ pauses for emphasis. you want them to take. • Eye contact—invite everyone into your ▼ Your closing is slightly different, as it should presentation by making eye contact. relate to your introduction. For example, if you ▼ • Delivery—show energy and opened with a question, restate it and give the enthusiasm. answer. If you opened with a quote, relate your ▼ • Posture and poise—approach and leave closing comments back to that quote. An ▼ the platform with confidence. anecdote or story in the summary could drive home the point of your talk. The closing leaves • Stand straight—don’t slouch Keep ▼ an impression on your audience, and is the your feet flat on the floor, and don’t message they are most likely to remember. shift side to side. Keep hands comfort ▼ ably at your sides or clasped naturally ▼ in front of your lower body. Practice helps you appear natural in the use of ▼ verbal and nonverbal techniques in your public ▼ speaking. ▼ Tool 7: ▼ Take Charge of Your Appearance ▼ Appearance is important because an audience often forms their first impression of a speaker ▼ before he or she even has a chance to speak ▼ Your grooming, the style and fit of your clothing, your posture, the expression on your face, and ▼ the confidence you exude all contribute to your appearance. Remember, be neat and clean ▼ Be dressed for what your audience or the subject ▼ Tool 6: requires. For example, dress clothes would be appropriate for a talk in which you promote 4H ▼ Deliver Your Talk to a business group, while an apron would be Effective delivery blends verbal and nonverbal ▼ appropriate for a foods demonstration. communication. Consider the following ways of However, your clothing should not capture the ▼ making your delivery more effective: attention of your audience to the point that they • Hand gestures—use occasionally and are focusing on your clothes or jewelry instead ▼ with good style, such as to emphasize a of what you have to say. point. ▼ The “total look” in public speaking also includes • Facial expressions—look alert Use personable qualities. A pleasant facial ▼ your smile, eyebrows, and the expres expression, good posture, a positive attitude, and sion on your face to show confidence, ▼ eye contact with your audience are appearance feelings, and determination. boosters. ▼ 6 ▼ ▼ ▼▼ • Keep visuals, such as posters or charts, simple. Letters and diagrams must be ▼ large enough for those in the back row to be able to read. Color contrast ▼ between the letters and the background ▼ makes visuals easier to read. Black letters on a white or yellow ▼ background is always a good choice. ▼ Note: If you are entering a speech contest, check the contest rules for restrictions on the use of ▼ visuals or props. ▼ Tool 9: ▼ Put It All Together ▼ Tool 8: With the first eight basic ▼ tools in hand, Use Props, Equipment, you are now ready to ▼ and Visuals assemble and deliver your talk. The suggested steps to Posters, charts, and props help the audience ▼ follow are: better understand and absorb your message. ▼ Here are some important tips when using props, equipment, and visuals: a) Organize your notes into an outline. Under ▼ each main heading of the outline, list as many • Make sure equipment works and is ready to use. ▼ details as you need to cover the point. Example: For electric appliances, have ▼ an extension cord in case one is not b) From the outline, write out the entire talk. You provided. ▼ may need to write several drafts before you have • Select only the necessary equipment it just the way you want it. Reading a speech ▼ and props. Avoid clutter. word for word or memorizing a speech is not • Organize your work area. If you won’t recommended. To be an effective speaker, you ▼ need to simplify your final draft into a series of be needing certain items until you are further into your talk, put them on ▼ keywords or symbols. trays and set them out of sight or ▼ behind you until you need them. c) Identify keywords or symbols for each section • If you are using a microphone, talk ▼ of your speech. Keywords are “nuggets” of into it so the audience clearly hears information; these nuggets are easier to ▼ your voice. If possible, practice with a remember than full sentences or phrases, a tool microphone ahead of time. to help you remember a larger set of information. ▼ Write your keywords on notecards, then use the • Presenters usually distribute handouts, if used, at the end of a talk, unless the ▼ notecards as you rehearse your talk. information is essential for your ▼ audience to have during the talk. ▼ ▼ 7 ▼ ▼ ▼d) Practice, practice, practice Ask family members, friends, or your 4H volunteer to listen to your talk. Their suggestions could be helpful. In addition, tape recording or videotaping your talk allows you to evaluate yourself. Practice one last time just before your scheduled talk. e) Do it After putting all the tools together and practicing sufficiently, present your talk confidently to an audience. Be prepared for questions following your presentation. When a member of the audience asks a question, respond by restating the question then answering it to the best of your ability. Always thank your audience for listening. f) Evaluate your presentation. After a talk is over, good speakers evaluate their presentation. Evaluate yourself on the nine tools in this handout. Also, you might ask a 4H advisor, a parent, or older 4H member with public speaking experience to evaluate your talk and help you improve your skills. Forge on Keep going in public speaking. The more you speak—in front of your 4H club, to the local Kiwanis club, at the County 4H Demonstration Contest, or the County 4H Health and Safety Speaking Contest—the better you will become. Last but not least, have fun and feel good about “making your best better” in public speaking. I pledge My Head to clearer thinking, My Heart to greater loyalty, My Hands to larger service and My Health to better living, for My Club, My Community, My Country and My World. ▼