6 Tips to Help You Write a Stronger Speech

Stephani Spindel, Co-Editor

With the seniors starting their second quarter into the Public Speaking class, juniors entering the college admission process, and the student body election coming up, we thought it would only be fitting to post a few tips on how to give a strong speech.

The following tips come from an array of sources, and are just a general consensus of what the experts say.

1. Write Like You Speak — Keep in mind that writing a speech is different then writing an essay for your AP Lit class, people will hear your speech not read it. So you don’t have to worry about using correct spelling or capitalization, instead focus on the formality or informality of your writing. The more conventional your speech, the better you will be able to communicate your thoughts.

 2. Understand Your Audience — If you’re speaking to a group of young kids, it’s often better not to use “big words,”and if you’re speaking to respectable adults, maybe you could consider wearing a tie. The point is to know how to connect to your audience so they understand whatever point you are trying to convey to them.

3. Know Your Theme — A lot of people tend to get nervous and ramble, forgetting what their point is, and getting so far off point, that they don’t even know how to get back to their main idea. Research shows that audiences tend to forget almost everything they hear in a speech, so it’s better to keep it simple and only mention one or two main ideas.

 4. Use Concrete Thoughts — As Mr. Sommers always says, “quotes and data, data and quotes.” Don’t use generalizations and vague ideas. When trying to prove a point, it’s best to give specific examples with concrete details. It makes it easier for your audience to understand, and makes people interested in your topic.

 5. When Persuading, Keep It Simple — If you are trying to persuade your audience, use a basic structure of ideas. “Here’s the problem, example, example, solution.” Of course, when necessary, having statistic and facts can also be very helpful.

 6. Simplify — Once you’ve finished writing your speech, be sure to go back and look for words you can get rid of. A common word people tend to use when writing, is “that”, and most of the time, getting rid of excess words, can help your point come across clearer. This method is used in the U.S. Senate!