Is Public Speaking for My Child? Building Communication Confidence From Young
If you find yourself looking for a suitable school holiday program or enrichment programme for your child, you are not alone in turning to public speaking as a possible skill to develop. At the Public Speaking Academy, we receive various queries on how public speaking training can help their child build confidence. While hard skills (such as mathematics, science) remain key skills in school, soft skills/ people skills such as communication, persuasion, or public speaking can help a child stand out as well!
Unlike a graded examination or test, the outcome from soft skill training may not be as obvious. Depending on your child’s learning style, the timeframe to see improvement in such skills may range from a few months to even years! More importantly, young students may want to explore and nurture their preferred communication style (e.g., more energetic, inspirational, or humorous). This way, having your child attend public speaking training at a young age may provide them with a longer runway to build a relevant skill. The best time to start would be during the school holiday!
If you are still in two minds over the benefits of public speaking training for your child, here are 3 benefits for you!
From the Stage to the World
While most parents join with a specific idea of public speaking on stage (e.g., in-class presentation, giving speeches to the masses), communication skills are applicable beyond the stage. As shared above, communication skills can apply to other settings, such as intimate, small-group settings (interview) or even casual settings. Nowadays, all of that might even take place through Zoom! Therefore, it is important to understand how to adapt the relevant communication skills based on the context and objectives of each communication settings.
For us, public speaking training is thus more than learning how to craft a speech. We design our programmes to introduce relevant communication techniques for various settings, coupled with key anecdotes/experiences to show how they are applied. So, for example, our learners who attend our 2-day kids public speaking masterclass (S’Peak Performance Programme, 9 – 12 & 13 – 18 years old) will get an opportunity to explore real-world communication skills such as individual/group interviews or story-crafting/storytelling.
Clarity of Voice, Clarity of Thought
One of the more common feedback we have received from parents is the improvement in the clarity of thought observed in their child. While a key aim of our training is still to develop a child’s speech confidence, our students often find growth in their ability to structure, arrange, and present their thoughts. We find that communication training is not about memorising a template speech or mirroring a specific speaker; instead, it is about providing a scaffold to guide the crafting process.
For our S’Peak Performance Programme, our training team emphasises the independence and creativity in crafting speeches based on a given structure. Our young learners are given ample opportunities to select a topic they are passionate about, adapt it to a specific scaffold, and present their speech in a safe environment. Beyond this, there are also opportunities for them to explore impromptu speech techniques to respond off-the-cuff or with minimal preparation!
A Strong Start to a Superb Journey!
Finally, we see public speaking and communication training as a habit-building process. Aside from learning the technique, a learner can see better growth by constantly applying the techniques they have explored. This is especially important for young communicators, as wrong or distracting habits may take root and remain. As a result, the learning process may become more challenging as the learner needs to un-learn the previous habit before developing a positive communication technique.
While our S’Peak Performance Programme runs for two full days, our training team ensures that our young learners have ample opportunities to build their speech habits. Students explore the techniques with an interactive and engaging theory exploration before being given incremental opportunities to apply the techniques shared. This is done through smaller-scale settings to ensure that students gain confidence over the two days. Through these two days, our young learners can grow as confident communicators at their own pace!
Come Check Us Out!
With holiday programmes aplenty, it may be difficult to choose the best programme for your child. However, if you are looking for a relevant, modern, and applicable skill to nurture, a public speaking programme can help your child develop key communication skills for school, home, and their future. Like our S’Peak Performance Programme, these programmes can be the stage for your child to take the world by storm!