What are public speaking activities and exercises?
We know for a fact that communication is the key to our flourishing society. We are also well aware that public speaking skill does not come easy to all. But everything has a solution. Here we provide a box full of Pandora’s simple yet effective DAILY public speaking exercises and tricks. Daily public speaking exercises aims warming up a little and practising everyday rather than mugging up and getting worked up just a day before the deadline. Mostly, people are scared or feel anxious when they ought to give a speech as they lack preparation on their part.
Every huge impact or thing happens because behind the scenes, it has been worked bit by bit, every day. Everyday giving a few minutes to these simple yet effective Daily public speaking exercises will help you become a master of public speaking in no time. To make it easy, only if you were a Game of throne fan, compare this to an allegory. Daenerys Targaryen did not become the mother of dragons in a day. She gradually got used to the fire and heat and bore with it. Only later to sacrifice her because only blood and fire together can hatch the dragon egg.
Daily public speaking Exercise and Techniques
Stop thinking about Mother of dragons and without further ado let’s get back to the topic. Here is a variety of daily public speaking exercises and techniques that will help you to come one step closer to your goal of public speaking.
1. The word drills
There are a few different ways of doing this exercise. Number one, ask your friend to give you a random word from the dictionary. All you need to do is talk about the word, like explain what it means, explain its origin, use it in conversation or make it word of the day. By doing this you won’t only build a good and impressive vocabulary at the same time, it will help you with your spontaneity of delivering a presentation.
Number two, find a word that which you are not aware about. Now build an introduction of it and explain what you think it means, all with nothing but utter confidence. Record it or do this exercise in front of the mirror. When you do this, you will notice your natural order of giving a presentation. Like how you use your voice, hand gestures, and body language. This daily public speaking exercise will not only help you to keep up with what you are good at but it will help you to pay attention to aspects that needs more work.
2. Forced silence
The ingredients this exercise will require are a partner and a video camera/ a recorder. All you need to do is ask your partner to record you when you give a presentation. Then repeat this drill, but this time ask your partner to point at you preciously where they think you need to take a pause. When you look at both the recordings you will notice a huge difference. This is because silences and pauses sound much better and create an impact on your audience. Silence drills will help you to be better and more organized in your presentation.
3. The endless gaze
Endless gaze is another kind of forced silence activity. You might have noticed many great speakers pause not only for a few seconds but for a long time, maybe a minute or so. So the next time you practice a presentation with your friend, practice this silence drill wherein you make a pause for a very long period. Since your friend is the only one there, they are forced to look at you for that period and not weird out. It will help you take a long pause and look at the audience endlessly, with confidence.
Check out this video for more examples of exercise 1 to 3.
4. Talk to the wall
Try to speak for 2 to 3 minutes straight to the wall. Practice your monologue with the same energy as you are giving a presentation under the spotlight. Don’t forget to use all your facial expressions and hand gestures.
Now you may be wondering, why talk to the wall? Well, talking to the wall prepares you to speak before the audience with constant pace and energy. No matter what their facial expression or body language tells you. Sometimes it may also happen when the audience slacks off a bit. But as a performer, you can’t lose your game.
5. Mirror talk
Just like you spoke to the wall, speak to yourself facing a mirror. Even better, if it’s a full-body mirror. Practice as if you are presenting on a stage. While doing so, you will notice a lot of things about yourself. For instance, your pace and voice modulation may be spot on, but your expression or body language not coordinated. These small things may throw the audience away, making them believe that you are not invested.
6. Record yourself
Recording yourself is a very common yet effective exercise. In this the only thing you need is a recording device. You can use your phone, laptop camera, or any other source device that will record your audio and video.
When you record yourself, you will get to know a lot of involuntary moments that you could avoid. You may be doing it willingly or unwillingly. But when you are aware, you could start to make an effort to avoid them. For instance, some people tend to touch their hair or forehead repetitively. Some people have tense body language and shrug their shoulders because they feel heavy and nervous.
Trust me you cannot hide these thing from audience.
7. Emoji exercise
This task is pretty simple. Take your phone out and sit before a mirror. Now replicate and enact the emojis from your keyboard. Try a variety of emojis and expressions. This exercise helps a lot for nervous nellies like me. Whenever we are tense, our facial muscles tend to stiffen. To avoid the same, move your face in ways that you don’t feel comfortable bits of help. It helps you to loosen your face and relax.
Check out our video to get more details of exercise 6 & 7.
8. Watch good and helpful video/ learn from the pro
Now, wait. I am not talking only about us, as in Frantically Speaking. We watch a lot of “how to..?” videos. But other than that, experience and learn directly from exceptional speakers. Observe their small things like the opening of a speech, take away in the end, and observe how they use their gestures and when. Try to make a list of at least five things you liked from their video that you would like to incorporate into your presentation.
Here’s a video for the reference or guide to the best TED speakers to begin with.
You can also check out with this site for more TED speakers to learn from.
9. Count up to 20
For this exercise, you need absolutely no content. All you have to do is count up to 20. In this exercise, your key focus should be on your body language, voice modulation, and hand gestures. So you count from 1 to 20 and whilst counting change your voice, use hand gestures and include pauses.
Try this say the number and follow the instruction in bracket:
1 2 (Say it in low voice and a soft gesture) 3 4 5 (higher you voice with each number) 6 (sound definite, point with hand and take a long pause) 7 8 9 (moderate pitch like you are explaining something) 10 (understanding soft tone of voice with a head nod)
10. Hi, my name is________.
This simple exercise will help you build your confidence as you speak or give a presentation. Take a deep breath at the beginning of the sentence. Then complete the sentence “hi, my name is (your name)” and take a deep breath after you end the sentence.
Taking a breath helps you to take the power of silence. Many people jump upon the following sentence which seems like they are rushing. Some also have a tendency to not keep eye contact at the end or beginning of the sentence, resulting in your audience losing interest in something else.
TIP: Don’t say anything till you breathe out. Sometimes people breathe in and speak, without breathing out first. It seems that you are rushing to say something and get done with your presentation.
11. I am the world’s best________.
This technique will help you with your vocal variety and expression. Frame the sentence and speak it with variations in expression, pause, style and so on.
For instance, I am the world’s best organizer.
Now try to speak: “I am, pause the world’s best emphases on best organizer.”
“I am the world’s best, long pause organizer slowly.”
“I. am. the. world’s. best. organizer.”
This exercise will help better your speech delivery for a variety of dialects. Also, it will help you to break through monotonous recitals habits. ARTICLE
12. Box Breathing
Box Breathing is a relaxing technique. It is a very useful exercise specifically for people who experience stage jitters. It helps one to be calm under pressure.
How to do this exercise: Breath in for 4 seconds. Hold for 4 seconds. Breathe out for 4 seconds. Hold for 4 seconds.
13. Prep Question
These are the questions you address and prepare for yourself before you write or deliver a speech. Exactly, like preparing before.
The questions that you need to address are:
- Who is my audience and what do they want?
- What is my audience expecting from me?
- What do I want?
- What are my talking points?
- What do I need to prepare?
Following video shows how to do the exercises listing from 9 to 13, with examples.
14. Make an instant Speech
This exercise might be a little tricky to work with in the beginning. But once you ace this exercise, you will inherit a lot of confidence and spontaneity. It will also help you to learn the skill of improvisation. To make an instant speech, start and end it with a ‘Key Message’. Include three different ideas, discuss them and tie them up as your supporting points. The rule of three is because it balances your speech well, giving not too less or not too much.
Start making a speech on simple topics in the beginning, like what you had for lunch today or your favorite movie star. Practicing this daily will provide you gain a structure and confidence boost. When you are confident with fun and silly topics, you will automatically gain a lot of personality when presenting.
15. Be your super-self/ Play Pretend
This is one of the fun exercises. I am sure everyone must have, at least once, tried it in their showers. All you have to do is think of yourself as a superhero or any other confident and powerful fictional character. Your choice should convert you into a public speaking avatar but magnified. In the beginning, try to perform a monologue of your chosen character. Then transfer the skills and attributes to your public speaking. When speaking of attributes I mean wit, focus, sophistication, comic, or whatever quality you find capturing of a superhero.
So next time you go on stage, be a Super hero.
16. Converse like Public Speaking
While conversing with your friends and family, talk as if you are giving a ted talk. Well, do give them a disclaimer before you try something. If you do this exercise once a day, it will help you to open up your body posture. It will also help you to experience different vocals corresponding to their expressions. For instance, when you are happy, your voice will be different from when you are suspicious.
17. Q&A with a sort of “expert”
Call your friend back for this exercise. So this is how it works, ask your friend to question or interview you about a job and a topic which you don’t know much. Answer the question pretending you are an “expert”. Don’t worry about having an intellectual talk session. You are doing this to work on your command, presentation skill and authority.
18. Make it or break it, filler free addition.
Filler words such as “ummm”, “so”, “like”, “you know”, make you seem unprepared and apprehensive. This exercise will help you to eliminate the same. Set a recorder for 30 seconds and give a talk. In these 30 seconds, you cannot use filler words. If you do so have to reset the timer and start all over again.
19. Tell a photo story or describe the view
We all might have done this exercise when we were kids. We were given a picture and we had to describe it. This exercise is very similar to what we used to do as kids. Find an interesting picture online; now tell a story about it. You can start with a back story, explain the characters, the situation depicted in the picture, give it a twist or a climax and other compelling things about it. From this storytelling format, you will learn a lot of other skills. Such as suspense delivery, voice modulation when telling an anecdote, timing, pauses and the list is endless.
20. Make a commercial
You might have seen so many different commercials and all so different. In this exercise, you have to create a commercial. Your skit should include both dialect and delivery. It’s a very creative and fun method, so try to enjoy and explore the comic side of you. Take any object in front of you, be it a pen, bottle, bag and so on.
21. Hype what you hate
You might notice some celebrities have so much energy and enthusiasm that they tend to pass it on to others, through the screen. You feel the same zeal after you watch them. This exercise will help you create a similar vibe. Hype and emphasise a thing that you hate. Like, ‘how you hate doing dishes’ or ‘Indian parents and marriage’. Use different variations to express your feelings, in-depth. For instance, use sarcasm, comedy, paint a picture even use facial expressions. This exercise will help both you and your audience to warm up and lighten the mood. You can also use this as an ice breaker session.
22. History of_______.
This is another one of the fun drills which entails a storytelling format. Pick the first item that you see around you. Let’s say, a pair of glasses. Now create a fun story of how it got its name, where did it come from, its place of origin and so on and so forth. Again you don’t have to be apt about the information. Just. Be. Creative.
23. Explain your idea to a child.
This exercise is converting your dialect into a simplified form. As if you are explaining it to a child. Remove all the jargon and big fancy words. Your speech should be the highlight of the presentation, not your distracting vocabulary.
Fun Public Speaking Exercise
Practising everyday can be really tedious and daunting. Especially for those who fear public speaking. One way to make it fun is to switch up the exercises every now and then. Explore your horizons. Focus on different thing to specialise, each day of the week. Another way is to create these as a game. Play with your friends and family in get together or during your lunch break. The aim of daily public speaking exercise is to have fun and keep acquiring skills. Few exercises, that you can play as games are:
- Emoji Game: You can play it like ‘charades’ or ‘heads up’. Ask your friend to keep the phone on their head and you can enact the expression of the emoji as they guess. Each time they guess it correct, your team wins a point.
- History of_______: play it as “funniest history of all”.
- Hype what you hate: You can play it as “make the best-worst speech”
- Tell a Story: Turn it into a pathetic, make believe story.
- Play Pretend: Create a super hero version of yourself, play it in teams. Like avengers, DC heroes or harry potter fan fics.
- Fishing Bowl Game: You can choose from the short speech game over here. The twist is topics given to the performer will be decided but unknown. On their chance, they have to fish a chit from the bowl, where the topic will be written. They have you immediately come up with a creative idea.
Daily Public speaking exercise for students and adults
|Daily Public Speaking Exercises for Students||Daily Public Speaking Exercises for Adults|
|Make it or break it, filler free addition.||The word drills|
|Tell a photo story or describe the view||Count up to 20|
|Make a commercial||Forced silence|
|Hype what you hate||The endless gaze|
|History of_______.||Talk to the wall|
|Emoji Exercise||Record yourself|
|Box Breathing||Be your super-self/ Play Pretend|
|Hi, my name is________.||Converse like Public Speaking|
|Make it or break it, filler free addition.||Explain your idea to a child.|
Students need to embed the habits of practising Public Speaking, if not every day than at regular intervals. It is a must for young people to be competent in the world and enhance their communication skills. These Public speaking skills will come in handy in schools or universities where they are required to give a presentation.
Furthermore, here’s an article called “10 benefits of public speaking for kids and how to teach them.”
Daily public speaking exercises for adults help them to gain eloquence. When you’re a professional, naturally you will be required to communicate and build relations. You may be a sales executive or an entrepreneur you still need to look confident, maintain posture and have decent eye contact. For all, that and more one needs to level up their skills, by practising daily public speaking exercises.
Daily Public Speaking Exercises at Home
A lot of the exercises that are mentioned in this article could be done in the comfort of your home. To build up your confidence, you can first start doing it alone. Later, when you feel comfortable, ask your partner or a friend to help you with some of the activities. This way they can help you see the mistakes that went into hindsight. As a public speaker, constructive criticism should always be welcomed.
Daily Public Speaking Exercises Online
Online is a platform that you should not deprive yourself of when it comes to Public Speaking. You can do your daily Public Speaking Exercise online in various aspects. You can choose to listen to other live speakers and take notes. Or you can join different clubs such as Toastmaster’s Club, Pecha Kucha Nights and more. The added advantage to these clubs is that you can experiment with your newly learned skills by performing once in a while.
Here’s a video about Everything You Need to Know About Toastmasters International:
If you want to know about how to prepare for Pecha Kucha, check out this article “What is a Pecha Kucha Presentation?”
Why do we need Daily Public Speaking Exercises?
You can’t run to the hills or dodge speaking in public speaking every time. So to power through these kinds of anonymous situations, daily public speaking exercises are your only solution. Practising daily will not only help you with your fear or anxiety but will also help you from impromptu situations. For instance, an immediate staff meeting or one-day presentations. It will help you cover up a list of things, such as:
- Talking Pace
- Body Language
- Eye Contact
- Various styles of presentations.
- Stage fright
You name it …..
How can I practice my Public Speaking Exercises, Daily?
Train yourself. Cultivate a habit of giving at least a few minutes daily for public speaking exercise. Start with an exercise that is simple for you. You can also make your shower time your practice time if you are shy. Then start recording your practices. That way you will be able to keep track of your progress. Later when you are comfortable try to engage with others. Their inputs and feedback could be valuable for your progress.
Persistence is the key
You can also make a weekly schedule for yourself. Switch up the exercises every now and then so that you don’t get bored. Try to be more and more creative with these activities. Once they get monotonous you yourself will want to walk out of it.
Practice Topics & Scripts
Daily Public Speaking Exercises Practice Topics
- List of Practice topics on Demonstrative speech ideas
- List of Practice topics on Humorous speech ideas
- List of Practice topics on Informative speech ideas
- List of Practice topics on Persuasive speech ideas
Daily Public Speaking Exercises Practice Scripts & PDFs
Try to be original as much as possible. But for some reason if you are not able to create a new script, don’t worry. We got your back. Here are a few things that you can do:
- Select a monologue from your favourite movie.
- Find a speech or dedication of your muse. For instance, ‘I have a dream” by Martin Luther King Jr, ‘Tryst with Destiny’ by Jawaharlal Nehru or Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement speech.
- You can always go back to your old scripts and presentation and improvise them.
- Use different types tongue twisters.
In the end, daily public speaking exercise is your commitment. All the activities listed above are designed to help you in one way or another. Everyone is different and so is their approach. So, don’t think about what you can’t do but think about how you can improve. You have all the means with you the topics, exercises and the map of how to perform them.