Icebreaker: Introduce yourself.



 

Icebreaker: Introduce yourself. 

Task

Prepare a 3 minute speech introducing your self to the rest of the group, record you speech or get an acquaintance to record you.  Post your speech on your blog (and youtube if you wish) and share it with us here. 

So here you are at the beginning of a speech course and you are being asked to give a speech already! You are probably thinking its a bit soon, right? Well, its essential in a speech class to jump right in and get started! Here are some guidelines to help you out. 

  1. Content 

It is impossible to tell us everything about yourself in three minutes, so instead focus on one or two things that have helped define who you are. Maybe it was getting you first job, some volunteer work you did, a sporting achievement. You get the idea you can make a few well-developed points about a clearly defined subject. 

At this point is important not to fall for temptation and narrow you topic too much. Very few people would like to listen to a speech on advanced glockenspiel techniques. REMEMBER you are the subject!

Now it is time to get creative. What we are looking for here are ways for you to make your speech mysterious and suspenseful, for example if you are sharing a story about meeting a famous celebrity don't reveal there identity until the end of the speech that way you can tantalize you audience with clues and keep the guessing and interested.  

Another technique you can use to keep everyone interested is to use drama, adventure or dangerous situations. Maybe you were caught in a flood or spent a year in Africa. Everyone has faced risk or triumphed over adversity in the past. 

You may wish to use humor in your first speech, audiences love witty remarks, jokes and funny situations, but like anything else humor is only effective when it is well done. It should flow naturally out of the speech rather than be contrived. 

Finally paint a picture with colorful and descriptive language for example a speaker was asked to introduce a fellow class mate, Peter. The speaker began by saying. 

The lights go out, and a wave of silence spreads across the hall. A tall man in white tie strides gracefully to the centre of the stage. A spotlight falls on him he bows, raises his hands, the halls fills with electric excitement as he drops his hand the orchestra comes to life and the hall is filled with blissful music and warm light. Peter you see is a conductor. 

The speaker could have said, “Peter is a conductor at the local orchestra and he finds it very exciting.”

  1. Organizing your speech. 

Your speech should have three main parts - an introduction, a body and a conclusion. Your first job in the introduction is to get the attention and interest of your audience you could do this by telling a story, asking a question or making a startling statement. The objective here is to create a dramatic, colorful opening that will make you audience want to hear more. in addition to gaining interest the introduction should also orientate you listeners towards the subject matter of your speech. 

You are now ready to move into the body of your speech, for many speeches the body seems to organize its self. As you have been assigned to tell a story about your self then it would be logical to use chronological order. However this is not always the case as you will see later in the course. 

If possible you should aim to end on a dramatic, clever, or thought provoking note. 

3. Speaking Extemporaneously 

Now you have an idea about the structure of your speech read this guide on Speaking extemporaneously this is the delivery style we recommend you use. 

  1. Practice 

The saying goes that practice makes perfect and we sure do agree with that. For this speech you should practice 8 times in front of the mirror if possible. The last time should be a dress rehearsal you should deliver the speech in the same place as you plan to on the final go record your self watch your self iron-out any faults you find. 

  1. Show time 

Okay  this is where you make a promise, this is not an editing course! once you deliver your speech you cant edit it or rerecord etc... We want it just the way you deliver it. Its your first speech if its perfect then you should probably drop this course we want mistakes, errors etc... We want something to build upon. relax and enjoy it. 

Task Discussion