Speaking in front of a large group of people can be mortifying—this is why public speaking is considered an art form, reserved for would-be politicians or celebrities. However, there is no reason why you shouldn't be able to recite Hamlet's speech in front of your classmates. All it takes is a little preparation and internalization.
- Write down your speech on a piece of paper, it will help commit your words to memory.
- Make an outline of the main points of your speech.
- Practice in front of the mirror or in front of a small audience.
- Forget to dedicate at least a week of preparation.
- Just memorize your speech. Understand it—internalize it!
- Choose a topic you find boring. When a subject is forced on you, you'll have a hard time expressing your thoughts.
- Keep eyes trained on your audience, back straight, and movements fluid.
- Use varying levels of volume and diction depending on the importance of your point.
- Speak clearly and use hand gestures appropriately.
- Stand hunched behind the podium while you talk.
- Read off your index cards for the majority of your speech.
- Address only one person in class—especially if she is seated in front.
- Remain at the front until your teacher tells you otherwise.
- Take the initiative and ask the class if they have any questions.
- Answer questions politely and as informatively as possible.
- Shoot your classmates a death stare so they don't ask you questions.
- Dash back to your seat the minute you're done.
- Ask to repeat your speech if you fumbled the first time. Own your mistakes.
Got your own tips? Share them in the comments below!