Good communication skills help you succeed in school and at work, improve your relationships with family and friends and deal with challenges. *Public Speaking*
Public speaking skills help you meet new challenges. Effective public speakers are able to: • Speak confidently with new people. • Choose interesting subjects. • Organize a speech that captures the audience's attention. • Participate in serious discussions about school and community issues. • Use language properly. • Be more sensitive to the opinions of others.
You learn public speaking just as you would any other new skill-identify your strengths and weaknesses, then work on improving your presentations through regular, patient practice. Speakers use many techniques to develop their skills and overcome nervousness or speech anxiety, but nothing works as well as practice. Public Speaking Skills
You cannot persuade another person of your opinion if you do not speak clearly and confidently. Verbal Communication Skills
Elements Effective public speaking involves various elements: • Volume • Rate • Emphasis • Articulation • Organization • Word Choice
Volume • Do not be too loud or too soft. • Speakers use volume to project confidence and win the agreement of their audience. • Speak louder in a large room or crowded room. • Raise and lower the volume of delivery to emphasize an important point or show emotion. • Raising your voice will get the audiences attention. • Lowering your voice will force people to listen.
Rate • Do not be too fast or too slow. • Presenting new or difficult information may be done slowly. • Showing importance of an idea or event may be done slowly. • Delivery should be slightly faster than normal conversational speed. • Alter rate of delivery by pausing. • Avoid fillers (“you know, umm, whatever”)
Emphasis • Do not emphasis all words equally. • Focus listeners attention on words that have drama, substance, power, or imagery. • Use pitch or tone to stress key words. • Tone or pitch matches the quality of voice to the feelings of the speaker.
Word and Phrase Emphasis Exercise • Read each sentence below to emphasize the desired meaning (in parenthesis). • I already told you. (Frustration) • I like you. (Friendship) • Come back here. (Anger) • You did that. (Surprise) • I thought he would win. (Irony)
Read the following sentence several times, emphasizing a different word to achieve the quality in parenthesis. • Mary is my friend. (Agreement) • Mary is my friend. (Pleasant surprise) • Mary is my friend. (Shock or surprise) • Mary is my friend. (Sarcasm)
Articulation Mispronunciation can hurt your credibility. Pronouncing words correctly will establish trust with the audience. Spelling is not always a reliable guide to pronunciation. Develop vocabulary and practice speeches to deal with challenges of proper pronunciation.
Most errors occur when unfamiliar words are used. Easiest way to learn correct pronunciation is to use a dictionary. Repeat words until they are easily said. Substitute another word if you cannot find the correct pronunciation. Use pronunciation exercises to reduce errors.
Web Sites for Pronunciation One Look Dictionary www.onelook.com More than 900 dictionaries are included in the Web search engine. Merriam-Webster Online www.m-w.com/home.htm Webster's Dictionary and Thesaurus.
You may also mispronounce words because the people around you pronounce them incorrectly.
Pronunciation Exercises Tongue Twisters Speaking at a conversational or slightly faster rate of delivery, repeat each of the following tongue twisters three or four times. Six sick slick slim sycamore saplings Three free throws Unique New York Toy boat. Toy boat. Toy boat. Mrs. Smith's Fish Sauce Shop Lovely lemon liniment Black bug's blood Preshrunk silk shirts Flash message! Are our oars oak?
Ball Bald Bog Bug Bus Boss Climb Crime Dad Dab Late Lake Look Luck Made Mad Met Mat Not Note SimilaritiesArticulate each pair of similarly sounding words. Make sure that a listener can hear the difference clearly. • Eat It • Berry Very • Fond Found • Get Got • Just Jest • Ran Run • Run Rung • Said Sad • They Day • Wake Wade
“Tomorrow' Speech”Read this excerpt from Macbeth quietly, then deliver the speech aloud two or three times, practicing pronunciation, volume, pace and clarity. Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow Creeps in this petty pace from day to day, To the last syllable of recorded time; And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. Out, out brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more: it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.