Sunday, December 6, 2015

What I Have Learned

This class has taught me more than I originally thought it would. I was always one that was extremely anxious and would rather do anything than give a presentation in front of a class. I was always somebody who was so envious of the people that could go up and present and look like they had no nerves up there. One thing this class has taught me was confidence, before I would always find a way out of presentations, or not look up from the page or powerpoint I was reading from. I went so far to almost drop out of my major so I wouldn't have to take speech class, as crazy as that sounds. By practicing and gaining more confidence and courage after each speech I realized that it wasn't as bad as I assumed it was. It helped me step out of my comfort zone and I am very appreciative of that. There are obviously things that I still need to work on like engaging the audience I am giving the speech to, more eye contact, etc but I feel that I have improved a tremendous amount from my first speech and I am very proud of myself. As we went forth with the speeches, each analysis was different. In the first couple of speeches I was focusing more on how the person was giving the speech and the areas they did good in and areas they could improve in. The last speeches to me, really focused on the content of the speech along with the way they gave it, everyone was doing a lot better when it came to the last speeches, so there wasn't really focus on how they gave the speech in my case.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Speech III

For my third speech I had to portray myself as someone who did not believe in the use of aborted fetus tissue in stem cell research. This particular speech topic was a controversial one so my preparing method was much different than my first two speeches. To prepare myself for this speech I had to do a lot of research on the facts of stem cell research. I am not one who is particularly opposed to the use of this research so it was specifically hard for me to go around the facts and find ways to make myself seem true to myself and the topic. The assumptions I made about the audience was that they were all on board with the use of stem cell research. With my argument I was trying to persuade people in my classroom that already agreed with the topic. The assumptions some classmates made was that when I was talking about being against stem cell research using aborted fetus tissue they viewed it as me being against the use of stem cell research in general, which was not the debate in my presentation. Some of the feedback I got was using church references in my speech. When I went into doing this presentation I was thinking, conservative republican, I feel that there were many times when people brought religion into politics and while I don't view this as a right thing to do, I was trying to channel somebody that would be truly against this. Another feedback point I got, which looking back now I do agree with, was too much content on my slide show. I was nervous about forgetting speech points so I did put a lot up. In all, I really felt that I did much better in this speech than I did in my others. I felt extremely confident and calm while I was up there and made eye contact which is something that I was never really able to do. With that said, there are always area's that I could to better in, but I like seeing improvements in myself after every speech!

Friday, October 16, 2015

Speech II

For my second speech the things I had to do to prepare was, getting information from my town, learning how to use a prompter and learn how to write a formal speech.
When we first got our topic for the type of speech we had to do I was kind of at a blank for what to do it on. I was thinking of budgets and parks but those didn't really appeal to me as something I would truly be interested in. When I was on Facebook I came across yet another Sachem East Student who passed away from a Heroin overdose. It struck me then that I should do my speech on that on-going problem that is so close to me.
When I finished writing my speech, which didn't take to long because I was emotionally connected to it, I had to learn how to do it on the prompter. This was not very easy for me. I already have a difficult time making eye-contact to people while I am up there so I knew that reading my speech word-for-word off a computer that was placed in a difficult spot would throw me off a little bit. After I did my speech I was kind of confident. I felt that I sounded better and went slower in pace once I got up there. I had some trouble with the prompter, but it didn't really effect my nervousness as I kept going.
 Once I got my evaluations back I was kind of disappointed, I knew that I didn't make eye contact or engage with the audience as much as I should've but I did feel like my speech meant something to me. I think that one of the evaluations I got from one of my classmates was kind of mean and made me loose confidence rather than guide me in a positive way. Ignoring that one, the others evaluations I got made me realize the things I really need to work on and try to get past my anxiety so I can demonstrate myself as a "natural" speech-giver.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Speech I

The first speech that I gave to the class was on my hometown. To prepare for this speech I had to think about the most predominate places that stuck out to me in my town. Of course to do so I thought of the places that I go on a daily bases or on several occasions.
One thing that I did do was assume that my classmates remembered what was said in Samantha's speech, being that she was from the same hometown as me. I realized after I did my speech that there could've been people that weren't in class the day that she presented, or people that did not remember the topics she discussed in her presentation.
Seeing the comments and evaluations on my speech from my teacher and my peers, I realized that there were a few things I was doing subconsciously that effected my speech. I know now that when I get nervous and give my speech I tend to speak a lot faster than I normally would. Of course I see that when I do so, its hard for the people listening to retain the information I was giving to them about my town.
I only received two evaluations back from my class, but the two evaluations were a little different. Although one of them stated that I spoke slow and precisely, the other evaluation said that I spoke very quick and that I need to make more eye contact. Both evaluations were very helpful to me. It made me realize that I need to work on a few things, although, my speech was good and informative which gave me confidence on my next speech.
For the next speech I had, which I just did today, I feel that I fixed some of the things that were commented on. I do struggle with anxiety so it was definitely hard for me to work with the prompter and make eye contact at the same time. Although, I was proud of myself for facing my fears and speaking slower and with more confidence (at least in my head I thought I did!)