by Egi Gaisie

I tend to be a detailed oriented person. If there was anything I was so conscious of ever giving so much attention to and preparing for, it was a training/teaching session.
I always aimed at making an impact in the classroom, guided by the illustration above for what is required to make ‘great teaching’. So to receive a referral for my delivery style, was a huge surprise; that was several years ago. 

I had participated in a workshop towards the attainment of becoming a  Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE), of American Hotel & Lodging Association. As a requirement, participants were expected to carry out a classroom presentation assignment; a 45-to 60-minute instructional presentation of a class. The presentation was to be captured on a videotape and submitted to CHE facilitators for evaluation.  This post-workshop classroom presentation was going to be evaluated according to specific standards, categories and criteriawhich we were all made aware of.

 I failed to make a positive impression on my evaluators in one of the two basic skills necessary to make learning effective; DELIVERY-primarily, body language and vocal variety;not spelt out in the illustration above but which influences the elements.

When speaking before a class, the teacher sends two types of messages. The voice sends an auditory message and the body language sends a visual message.

The least effective teacher will have the attention of students for only the first few minutes of a class. The skilled teacher is able to combine good vocal variety and body language with sincere emotion to keep the attention of students for the rest of the class. The latter was what I was aiming to be. 

Effective use of Body Language through:

  • Gestures
  • Posture
  • Body Movement
  • Facial Expression
  • Eye Contact

Effective use of Voice  in respect to:

  • Pitch 
  • Verbal Pauses
  • Volume
  • Articulation
  • Inflection

I had the opportunity to re-do the assignment and to present it for evaluation. The exercise contributed greatly towards enhancing my efforts to make the needed impact in the classroom. I have since become much more conscious of my delivery style, having worked towards correcting the areas which resulted in the referral.

I learnt from my mistakes! 

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