When it comes to surveys that identifies what our greatest fears are, public speaking frequently top these lists. According to an article published by The Washington Post, more than 25% of Americans surveyed fear public speaking, making it the number 1 fear of all Americans (see article titled America’s top fears: Public speaking, heights and bugs, published by the Washington Post on 30 October, 2014). Delivering a speech in public is more fearful than heights, bugs, snakes, and drowning!
Therefore, if you can help your children overcome the fear of delivering public speeches, or even master the craft, your children will be considered as more courageous and braver the average population! And here is the good news. Probably one of the best times one can start to gain exposure to public speaking is when one is at the adolescent stage of development. This is because children are less likely to be as self-conscious as adults.
Here are some quick tips to start exposing your child to the world of public speaking.
Tip #1: Start creating chances for them to speak
Opportunities for children to deliver a public speech are plentiful, if only you know how to find them! Apart from enrolling your children in public speaking classes, you can get them to tell a story to relatives during gatherings, get them to say a few words of praise to the birthday boy or girl during a party, or even get them to be the host of a children’s party! Many opportunities are abound.
Tip #2: Expose them to different audience
This is an important tip to follow. Get your children to ‘say a few words’ in front of different groups of audience. Expose them to speaking in front of their friends, relatives, or even adults they have met for the first time. This gesture alone helps to build the confidence level of your children.
The best thing is most adults are usually forgiving to children, even if you feel that your child’s speech isn’t perfect. What’s more important is the exposure.
Tip #3: Always encourage, praise and affirm
After your child has delivered his speech, always encourage, praise and affirm. The seal of affirmation will condition and cultivate a growing confidence in your child when it comes to public speaking. Parents often forget this crucial step that does wonders.
Practice these 3 simple tips to expose your child to the world of public speaking at an early age, and soon, your child will grow up to become confident and competent individuals.