4 ways to help improve your students’ presentation skills

30 Sep 2016

1. Work on Pronunciation

A clear and distinct pronunciation of words is key to performing well in passage reading. Teachers may consider having students read passages of their favourite books out loud and have their peers evaluate them on their pronunciation. This enables students to take ownership of their literary choices while empowering them to collaborate actively with their classmates. Granting students access to reading choices also exposes them to different genres so they can broaden their literary horizons and increase their motivation to read more widely.

Dictation could be adopted as a daily practice as it encourages students to listen carefully to what is being read aloud and enhances their knowledge of phonetics. As a student is reading, have his peers focus their attention on listening to him speak and have them pick up the subtle tones and stresses on individual words so they can effectively distinguish the different speech sounds of the English language.

Extracted from English Oral Buddy, P4 Reading Aloud

2. Coherent flow of ideas

Verbal communication is considered to be abstract. There are no physical evidence to help the recipient visualise the message. Hence, ideas and messages are easily understood if they are delivered coherently. To improve on this skill, teachers can train their students by introducing an activity called picture conversation. As the name of the activity suggests, students are required to make a conversation based on the picture given. One strategy to facilitate the flow of coherent ideas would be to ask students to mentally assign a number to the various interesting events that are taking place in the picture.

For instance, the above points are the main events occurring in the picture that the students need to talk about. By numbering the points in a clockwise direction, it allows them to connect the events one after another and present the picture in a smooth and coherent manner.

3. Explain it like a story

Stories are fundamental to meaning and memory. Everyone loves a good story. What better way to deliver your presentation than to use the storytelling method? In storytelling, mundane facts and figures are transformed into vivid characters as impactful adjectives and adverbs are used to spice up descriptions.

4. Speak with Confidence

Encourage students to develop their skills in public speaking by having them present certain topics in front of their classmates to help them build confidence in speaking in front of an audience.

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