Narrative/personal experience

Usually, it revolves around some kind of life lesson or lessons of right and
wrong. A narrative/personal experience speech recounts an experience you’ve had
and the significance you’ve attached to it. For your first speech assignment, you
must prepare and present a narrative/personal experience speech of three to
five minutes. Preparing the Speech Use the following steps to prepare your
speech: 1. Select a goal for your speech. a. Brainstorm ideas of topics you
know something about and which are important to you. For instance, if you have
a special pet that has made life better for you, you could tell your audience
about the things your pet has done. If a teacher in high school made an
impression on you, you might want to talk about one or two specific things that
teacher did. If you had a particularly fun job once, you could talk about some
of the things that made it fun. Brainstorming should take about one hour. b.
Determine what kind of audience you’ll speak to, how large it is, and what the
occasion is. For example, if you’ve chosen to talk about your experiences with
your pet, your audience could be members of a local Humane Society gathered to
discuss increasing adoption of homeless pets. If you’ve chosen to talk about
your experiences in science class, you could prepare for a speech before a
group of high school students at a science fair, or for a group of teachers at
an educational seminar. If you’re going to talk about a job you had once, your
audience could be made up of people who still work for the company. Lesson 1 27
c. Develop a speech goal statement tailored to your audience. This is a single
sentence saying what you want your audience to know, believe, or do. An example
of a speech goal statement on an informative speech about animals could be, “I
want people to know how much fun I’m having with my dog, Charlie.” For a goal
related to a speech about your experience in history class, you might state, “I
want people to know how my teacher inspired me,” or “I want teachers to know
how to make the subject of history more interesting.” 2. Gather, evaluate, and
prioritize information to use in your speech. a. Even though you already know
something about the subject you’ve chosen for your speech, you’ll need to
compile additional information. Read other materials and draw on others’
expertise. b. Once you’ve compiled enough information and you feel completely
comfortable with the material or subject, determine which data seem legitimate,
valid, or otherwise useful for your purpose. c. Decide which facts you
absolutely want to impart to your audience. Set aside superfluous information.
However, don’t forget it exists—you may find it valuable if anyone in your
audience asks questions. 3. Organize your ideas by creating a well-structured
outline. a. Identify three to five main ideas you want your audience to
remember. b. Combine your speech goal statement with these ideas, and create a
thesis statement. Writing your goal statement and thesis should take about one
hour. c. Develop your main points. Take about two hours to develop them fully.
d. Develop and outline the body of the speech. Choose an organizational style:
chronologically forward (or backward) or some other fashion. e. Create an
introduction that grabs the attention of the audience, establishes for the
listener some relevance, and states your thesis. 28 Speech f. Create a
conclusion that summarizes your goal and main points and gives the audience a
sense of closure. g. Compile a list of sources (similar to a bibliography). 4. Choose
and prepare presentation aids. a. Use aids if they help to clarify, emphasize,
or dramatize what you’re going to say. b. Ensure that your aids use more than
just words. c. Ensure that any visual aids are large enough to be seen by the
audience. This specific size will be dependent on how large your audience will
be. d. Ensure that any audio aids are easily heard. Audio/video aids shouldn’t
be longer than 15 seconds for three minute speeches or 30 seconds for five
minute speeches. e. Figure out how to incorporate the aids. Where will you
introduce a slide? When will you change the slide? Will you keep the slide on
the screen throughout the speech, or will you shut it off once you’ve spoken
about the subject to which it applies. Take one or two hours to practice with
your visual aids. 5. Practice your speech in front of friends or relatives. a.
Practice until you feel your wording is accurate, clear, vivid, and
appropriate. This process will be accomplished through adjustments you make
almost every time you rehearse your speech. b. Practice until you believe your
delivery is intelligible, conversational, and expressive. c. Practice
integrating your presentation aids until you can do so confidently and
smoothly. d. Continue practicing until you can deliver it within the time limit
and without reading it. 6. Record the practice speech, and play it back to
yourself. You should practice for about two hours before recording. Ask
yourself the following questions: a. Are you in focus? b. Can you hear yourself
clearly? c. Are you making eye contact? Lesson 1 29 Recording the Speech Once
you’ve reached the point that you’re satisfied with your delivery, record the
speech. 1. Begin the recording by reading the following sentence. (Fill in the
blank as you read.) The audience I’m addressing for this speech is _______. 2.
Pause for a few seconds (count to five in your head), and then begin your
speech. 3. Watch the recorded speech. Ensure that it fulfills the requirements
for the assignment. Reviewing the video and fixing any errors should take an

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