Practice, practice, practice. When you know the material solidly, speaking about it will happen naturally. That’s the best combination when delivering information of any kind, to any age, for any reason; it's that new 70/30% rule (for public speaking)! 70% is about knowing the information solidly--100%! (fully embodied and inspired), with 30% the naturally, conversational expression, of the information, (...which is the mark of an interesting speaker/talk).
Practice, practice, practice Did I say that already? (70% is ensuring you know your information 100%!)....can't say that enough...
Below are a few practices to ensure a 70/30% balance from your child, before S/he presents (yourself too, when practicing to present):
- Ask your child to consider speaking the introduction and summary of their presentation (assuming they have crafted a draft), out loud (not to focus on the body-content of their speech. That's when most of the 30%--the conversational relaying of the information--happens, and which can be supported by “bullet points” on index cards, they can refer to when presenting). Have them practice by speaking [the introduction and summary] out loud in their room, while playing outside, singing the information in the shower, in front of the mirror; verbalizing it while walking, running, sitting at lunchtime, and helping around the house!
- Have them pay attention to “hearing themselves” -- the sound of the information coming from their mouths", as they practice everywhere! Most cell phones can audio-record. If you have one of those, have them record themselves, and then listen. If they don’t like what they hear, "I sound like that!" ask, "How would you prefer to sound?" and see if they can "match" it!
- Ensure their knowledge by having them imagine hearing the information “in their mind".
- Ask them questions about their topic that you want to know. This gives them practice responding (Q&A), and learning to respond comfortably, while hearing their response! Did they like how they responded/sounded? What might make a better sound-experience?! Have fun asking them to consider this.
Hear a pattern here (pun intended)? By guiding your child to become aware of one “sense-ability” (hearing/sound), you are strengthening their speaking confidence naturally. It's that new 70/30% rule! Know your information and then become aware of how you deliver it – for better delivery!
Practice, practice...ok already... Our kids eventually tied their shoelaces after much practice (as we did). Speaking is a built-in human capability. With our built-in abilities to practice, and become aware of, everyone can surely achieve full verbal potential, and have fun speaking anywhere, anytime, with any one!
It’s a divine moment when we experience our kids speaking with grace and ease.