The digital age has brought some drastic changes to communication, making real life-classroom discussion more important than ever. While many students struggle with interacting face to face with others, learning effective public speaking skills can help overcome these problems.
What is public speaking?
Public speaking is defined as talking in front of a group of people, usually with some preparation. It can be in front of people that you know or in a crowd of strangers. The role of public speaking can have different functions. It can be informative, persuasive, celebratory, or entertaining.
Why is public speaking useful for students?
As the world spent two years in lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic and online teaching became the new norm, students have spent less time having face-to-face interactions with their peers. This has created a problem in developing the necessary tools required for interacting with others both in and out of the classroom. Many students find it difficult to communicate face to face and shy away from expressing their ideas. Online discussions do not carry the impact of direct real-life conversations and can easily be misunderstood.
Public speaking can be nerve-wracking, but it is one of the most essential skills a student should develop. Being able to speak confidently is vital, a clear, confident speaking voice fosters self-esteem and personal confidence. No matter what career option a student decides to choose in the future, public speaking helps a student be confident and achieve success.
Here are 5 reasons why public speaking should be a part of the school curriculum
– Public Speaking improves communication skills
– Public speaking is a combination of verbal and non-verbal communication. Both of these are important for the message to be conveyed efficiently. Students are graded on presentations, debates, or reports, those with good public speaking skills are able to achieve good grades and stand out.
– Public speaking boosts confidence
– Public speaking can boost confidence in students. Once the fears and insecurities of public speaking are overcome, students can feel empowered. When a student connects with an audience, it is a reminder that even children have valuable insights and opinions to share with the world.
– Public speaking prepares students for careers
Effective public speaking skills can help students in their careers, as it shows creativity, critical thinking skills, leadership, composure, and professionalism. These qualities are very important to develop for future success. Public speaking can also help students stand out among their peers by promoting their ideas. Speaking skills can also help students excel in interviews.
Public speaking teaches the art of persuasion
Learning how to persuade someone is an art that develops over time. Public speaking can teach students to persuade and talk effectively to others. With persuasion, students can influence people with their ideas in a positive manner and can create an impact for the better in the community.
Public speaking develops vocabulary and fluency
Language is a powerful tool. With a good vocabulary, students can communicate their thoughts and ideas effectively without the use of fillers. A good vocabulary is also a sign of confidence and helps the message be conveyed properly.
How can students become good at public speaking?
Practice makes Perfect. Practicing regularly is an important thing. For students to become confident speakers, they need to be comfortable speaking in front of others.
Public speaking clubs and workshops in schools can help improve their skills. Speaking in front of familiar faces such as classmates and friends also encourages them and gives them a boost to speak in front of larger crowds.
Here are 3 ways for students to develop public speaking
Stay Calm and be prepared
It is important for students to stay calm and composed when speaking in front of a group. The best way to get started with public speaking is to speak about a topic that is familiar. Such topics can be easier to communicate effectively. Being prepared is the best way to ensure that you are confident about speaking in front of others.
It is easy to get distracted while speaking in public but stay focused on your message. It is also important to maintain eye contact with listeners and not look down at the floor or be restless.
One important thing to keep in mind while speaking in front of others is to be yourself. Do not put on an act or pretend to be someone. It is easier for an audience to listen and connect with you when you are authentic.
If public speaking is taught at a young age, it makes students successful in every phase of life. Students learn how to speak well and effectively communicate and articulate themselves with others. This helps students communicate with friends, family, peers, and colleagues. While technology is becoming more prevalent in classrooms, it is important to engage students in discussion and speeches so that they are able to develop the skill of public speaking.