Record a journal entry of how you used one of our in-class focus blocks. What did you accomplish during this time? What did you struggle with? What might be your next step in your next focus block? Set a Goal.

During Thursdays in class time, I started the block off by reviewing my notes from before my notes from before. I took notes on techniques and strategies to use from a Toastmasters pdf. These strategies include, express an opinion, address cause and effect, break the topic into components and then discuss each component individually, discuss past, present and future. After gaining a better understanding of strategy and technique, I spent the rest of the block watching impromptu speech competitions online.

I used the tactics I learned from effective speaking the earlier Monday and took notes on the things I liked and didn’t like about these speeches. I noticed that a lot of people used long pauses for effect. If used correctly, they can be beneficial and add time to a speech. I also noticed people who used a lot of emotion to convey something very simple. This engaged me in the speech more and made me more inclined to listen. On the other hand, some people used too many hand gestures or had too many ideas in one speech. I’ve realized that impromptu speeches are a lot like paragraph structure, where it has to convey a lot in a little time/space.

However, last block I did struggle with maintaining my attention in class. I found myself distracted and zoning out ever 15 minutes or so. I think this is because I didn’t get enough sleep the night before as long as the seating arrangement I was at. I’ll make sure to keep those things in mind during our next ZIP work block.

As for the next work block, I plan on actually getting started on trying to do impromptu speeches. Over the weekends I’ll print some prompts. I’ll ask Mr. Morris if I can go out in the hall to try a couple, using the techniques I tried. I won’t ask any of my peers to asses me yet, I’ll just run a couple through myself. After I’m done each one, I’ll write some notes on what I think I did well and could improve on. Overtime, I’ll be able to compare these notes and see where my weaknesses lie and what I need to specifically work on.