My speech content and structure improved more and more with every speech, I believe. The content with my first two speeches weren’t very good, because I didn’t do enough research about the topics or allowed myself time to really think about every aspect of the speech. The content in my Persuasive Speech about school uniforms lacked enough useful information and was too vague. I was more focused on memorizing things and getting over my nervousness. After I became comfortable and more knowledgeable about how to prepare for a speech, I began to put more effort into the content and the information I wanted to audience to really understand.
So in my next speech about Premarital Counseling, I put a lot more time into the content and the information I had researched, and by doing that I became passionate about the subject and was able to deliver a better speech with confidence. The structuring of the speeches also improved, I learned more and more from every speech about how I needed to structure my speech more effectively. I realized that when I put more work into writing everything down and preparing for the speech structure that the talking part wasn’t so bad.
I think my nonverbal delivery improved a little bit with every speech, but I still need improvement. After my first two speeches I noticed by my third speech that my gestures improved, as well as my enthusiasm in my tone and also in my eyes. My speech that I thought I had the best nonverbal delivery was the speech about premarital counseling, I think it was easier to “feel” my speech because I was passionate about it. Of all the content I have learned this semester about public speaking, the ‘personalizing ideas’ has what impacted me the most.
I have realized that the speeches I am more interested in listening to is when they present their ideas in human terms that relate in some fashion to the experience of the audience/myself. So, when I give a speech now I have a goal to entertain the audience as they are being enlightened, and personalize my ideas. For example, in my speech about School Uniforms I gave the audience information about when I was in school and how not having school uniforms effected me personally.
Also, my speech about Pre-Marital counseling I shared my own story about my divorce and how premarital counseling would’ve changed that. Because putting a human face on a familiar topic, and not just stating statistics and technical jargon, it brings it home in personal terms. I’m still far from being a great public speaker. I struggle with delivering a persuasive speech the most. It’s very challenging to persuade an audience on a controversial topic that touches on their basic attitudes, values, and beliefs.
I definitely need to work on the credibility, delivery, supporting materials, language and reasoning in my speeches. I also believe that I struggle with this because even in real life I struggle with arguments. I’ve never been good at debating or trying to persuade people to believe or agree with something I say. This is something I want and need to work on for my speeches in the future, as well as my personal life. I learned a great deal from this class on this and it did help some, but I still need a lot of improvement. I also need improvement with my delivery.
I noticed in my speech about school uniforms that I would state statistics and examples, but I didn’t make it vivid and gripping for the listeners. It didn’t sound natural, as though I was telling a story. I would like to state the statistics and examples in a way that doesn’t bore the audience, and in a more confident tone. I would also like to work on my movement, gestures and eye contact in my speeches, I noticed in all my speech videos that I didn’t convey confidence, sincerity, and conviction as well as I would’ve liked.