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PRESENTING & COMMUNICATING EFFECTIVELY

Introduction

Very few tasks at school evoke such fear and anxiety as presenting or public speaking. So much so that over the past few years, there has been much debate among students, parents, educators and administrators as to the validity and necessity of oral presentations  as a form of assessment.

The following information serves to evaluate the benefits of learning and practicing the art of presenting and communicating effectively. The technology resources highlighted will help educators to implement activities and practices that will help students alleviate their fears and anxiety when it comes to public speaking.

Public speaking is not only used for presenting in front of a crowd but is a necessary skill used in daily human interactions. Being able to present yourself or your ideas in a clear, concise and engaging manner is necessary in daily conversation, employment situations and also to be able to advocate for oneself.

 

The fear and anxiety that cripples many speakers before taking the stage come from internally as well as social pressure and expectations. Fear and anxiety can cause various reactions to our mental, emotional and physical well-being. We may become confused, experience brain fog, begin to sweat, cry or have heart palpitations.

It is important to acknowledge that presenting and communicating is not only about the words used. Presenting and communicating effectively includes the words spoken, the body language being displayed and the connection with the audience. It is a holistic experience of one’s self to engage in communication with or at a group.

Instead of removing presentations and public speaking in the classroom, educators are finding innovative ways to support students in overcoming fears and building confidence through public speaking.

Innovation

Through the affordance of technologies available today, educators are finding innovative ways to prepare students for public speaking. These tools assist in maintaining a mindfulness approach to mastering the art of public speaking. Keep in mind that each student comes with their own apprehensions and choose tools that will complement each individual on their journey best.

SPEEKO

Speeko is a great practice app for students to rehearse with. Students can practice in the safety and privacy of their home. The app provides personalized coaching and tutorials. As the student practices, it also provides instant feedback on various aspects of speaking such as pace, intonation, articulation and eloquence; helping to build confidence. The progress tracking bar helps both the student and the teacher see areas of improvement overtime.

Unfortunately this cost effective free app is only available on iOS.

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