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wikiHow to Speak In Front of Large Groups of People

The moment has come. You're about to make an important speech in front of a large crowd. You walk up, get ready, open your mouth... then silence reigns the room. Here's something for you to do to effectively speak in front of that large crowd.


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    Write a speech. Write down little notes about what you'd like to include in your speech. Is there a certain subject you have to speak about, or is it your own thing? Research it! Find interesting facts about your topic to include. Add in special effects in your speech. Make the audience think! Put pauses in your speech where there would be points to really think about something, like a past experience, an answer to a question, or an opinion. Write down sentences or paragraphs that make the audience visualize something. "Imagine..." or "What if..." there are two ways to start of something like that. Maybe add in a little humor to your speech. A little joke every now and then will keep a person interested in your speech.
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    Review your speech. Make sure there aren't things you are embarrassed to say, or are not positive of the pronunciation. It will also help to not use words you don't know the meaning to, so you don't use a wrong word or don't give it the right emotion. And also, if you use too many words that people don't know the definition of, that alone might make them not care for your speech, considering the fact they would be awesome have a clue what you were talking about. Make it seem like you're writing an essay for school, and go through grammar, spelling, punctuation, and so on. Even the slightest mistake could mess you up. And finally, have a friend or two read over your speech. Ask their opinion on it, for things you could improve, and ask questions about it to see if they got the point about what the whole thing was about. See if they actually learned from it. Using those pointers, make one last speech, making it the best you can make it.
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    Be sure to practice at home if you get nervous. The more secure you feel about it, the less likely you will be too nervous. If the crowd throws you off, just imagine you're in your room (or where ever you practiced) just doing one last practice.
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    Be yourself. Don't write something in this whole business like form just to try to impress. Add a little something to make your speech say "This is me, saying my speech, not that other person over there". The more "you" you make it, the less work you'll have to do, which means the less you'll have to worry.
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    Make yourself note cards. They are a lot easier to use than searching your speech when you don't remember the next point of discussion. Try not to put a lot on one card. Usually, one card per point works, but if there is a lot of information for one, move onto two or three cards, anything to limit the amount of looking you do. Don't write down full sentences, just write down simple notes and ques for you to remember what going on. This also helps you keep eye contact.
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    When it finally comes down to that moment, take a moment to breathe deeply. Not just a little 1 second inhale, exhale. Inhale for 10 seconds and exhale for the same amount, and be sure you breathe in so that your stomach area moves out, and your shoulders don't move up. If it doesn't work the first time, do it again, and again, until you feel relaxed and ready. This alone could throw away enough nervousness to get you through the speech.
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    Search the crowd for a buddy or family member. Use them as a motivation to be the best speaker you can be. If you can't find them, just remember that they are out there and they see you, even if you don't see them.
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    Begin to speak. Wait, begin to speak, s l o w l y! What you think is too slow is perfect. What you think is just right is too fast usually for the people listening. Articulate everything! It's funny how a word can change into something totally different from your subject because you didn't use the right sounds, but it won't be that funny for you! Keeping this in mind, speak. Usually, after a paragraph or so of speaking, you begin to realize "Hey, this ain't half bad!" and it's easier to continue. If it doesn't click in then, just give it a little more time.
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    Be sure to add emotion to your speech. How often do you actually listen to a speech made by someone who is monotones or sounds like they are just reading through a paper. Boring! Pretend you are a movie actor/actress. Everyone sees what you are doing, and you want to make a lot of money for the movie, and not get fired. If you can, move around, use hand gestures, if you really want to dig deep, act out a part of your speech while you say it. If that doesn't get people's attention, nothing will. In the middle of your speech, stop and ask an audience member a question to get an opinion on a point you are about to make, then prove them right or wrong. Try getting an opinion from someone who seems to be drifting off, just to get their attention back. Some people will be listening and start thinking "good point","that's true", or, if they are more child-like, "Ha ha! You were wrong!" That shows that people are paying attention. Make sure you ask question and add pauses. Do anything to make the people think! And be sure to have eye contact with the whole audience (or look right above the crowd if you don't want to look right at them).
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    Have fun with it and enjoy it. If you hate it, the audience will hate it. But if you have fun with it, it will show in your words, and the audience will have fun, too.


  • Smile
  • Know what you're talking about
  • If you're getting jitters and butterflies, take a few deep breaths to calm yourself and speak loudly, especially for a larger crowd.
  • Be confident and energetic—not scary energy, but to where it's fun for everyone.
  • Trust yourself!
  • Show your personality.
  • Speak slowly!
  • Practice. Regular practice with a small group like toastmasters will build your confidence and improve your communication techniques. Check www.Toastmasters.Org to locate a club in your area.
  • Know what kind of an audience you are addressing to in advance to be able to prepare the correct diction (choice of words).
  • Have emotion
  • If you mess up during your speech, don't go back and correct yourself. Make it look like part of the speech.


  • If you mess up once, don't start acting like it's the end of the world; otherwise, it will seem like it for you.
  • Don't be negative about yourself or your speech.
  • Don't try too hard writing a speech. If nothing comes to you, take a break.

Things You'll Need

  • Pencil
  • Paper
  • Friends/Family
  • Guide
  • energy and confidence

Article Info

Categories: Public Speaking