What advice would you give to a beginner?

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I got my first taste of public speaking at age seven when I was asked to do a reading in church. I remember feeling pretty comfortable and finding that speaking in front of a large group of people was not intimidating to me.

Speech and Debate in high school was a natural thing for me. I tried a few different categories until I settled into Dramatic Interpretation.

Since my first public speaking experience, I have spoken to large groups more times than I can count and I still love it. In addition to speaking in public, I have coached others on how to do the same and how to be less nervous about it.

Fast forward to today. My daughter is seven years old and she has been asked to do a reading in church. One of life’s little ironies, I think. Anyway, I sat down with her tonight to give her some tips and pointers and I focused on reading more slowly than she thinks she should, reading in a strong, confident voice, and enunciating clearly. I did not focus so much on volume because she’ll be using a microphone and I’m afraid she’ll bellow into it if I urge her to be loud.

I do not want to overload her with information, but what else should I tell her? I should note that she is a little nervous, but far less than I thought she would be.

That is ironic, haha! I would just tell her that the audience is there to hear her and support her, so she should relax and have fun.

I think you gave her good advice! Is she interested in doing more public speaking now?

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