Public Speaking Tips for Kids

10 Public Speaking Tips for Students

Public speaking can be daunting, especially for beginners, but with practice and guidance, your students can become confident and compelling speakers. Here are ten public speaking tips to help your students feel great about their next oral presentation.

1. Practice, Practice, Practice

Encourage your students to practice their speech as often as possible. The more they practice, the more comfortable they become with the material. Suggest that students rehearse in front of a mirror or record themselves to pinpoint areas that need improvement.

2. Body Language Matters

It is essential for students to understand the power of non-verbal communication. Teach students to use gestures and facial expressions to emphasize their points. Students should also maintain good posture and eye contact with the audience throughout their speech. Certain types of body language should be avoided, including fidgeting, swaying back and forth, leaning back, and placing hands in pockets. Here’s a video you can use with your students to review different types of gestures. 

3. Use Visuals

Students can enhance their presentation with visual aids. Props, slides, videos, or posters will reinforce the message and keep the audience engaged. Visuals should be easy to read, and students should practice using them to ensure a smooth integration into their speech.

Public Speaking Activity for Gestures

4. Manage Nervousness

It’s natural to feel nervous before speaking in public. Share strategies for managing stage fright, such as deep breathing, positive self-talk, and visualization. Use the video below to help students control the nervous energy often felt before a performance.

5. Accept Imperfection

Help students understand that it’s okay to make minor mistakes during a speech. Mistakes like forgetting a line or stumbling over a word can happen to even the most experienced speakers. It’s important for students to continue their speech despite these slip-ups. Pausing or restarting the speech will draw attention to the mistake and make it difficult for the audience to follow along.


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6. Vary Pitch, Volume, & Speed

As students get more comfortable speaking in front of an audience, they can start to play with the pitch, volume, and speed of their words. Vocal variation makes the speech more engaging. 

7. Add Structure

Teach students how to write an organized speech with an introduction, body, and conclusion. Once students understand the step-by-step method for crafting a successful speech, they will feel more confident speaking in front of an audience. Click here for an outline you can use to guide your students through the speech-writing process. All of the major components of a speech are included and explained in a format students can understand and apply.

Speech Writing for Beginners

How to Write a Speech Lesson Plan for Teachers

“This is a great unit. My students have a speech project they are doing and this was perfect to introduce and learn about writing speeches.” -Katie L.

8. Use Notecards Effectively

Notecards should have main points and brief reminders, not the entire speech. Here are some tips for using notecards: 

  • Keep it simple: Use bullet points and keywords rather than complete sentences.  
  • Use large font: Make sure the text is large enough to read, even from a distance.
  • Number the cards: Numbering the notecards will make it easier to stay on track during the speech, especially if students lose their train of thought.  
  • Remember the audience: While it’s important to use notecards as a reference, students should avoid reading directly from them. 

9. Pay Attention to Timing

When practicing, students should keep track of the time it takes to deliver the speech. By timing themselves, students  can identify areas where they speak too slowly or too quickly. They can also adjust their pace to ensure they finish their speech within the allotted time.

10. Smile!

Smiling during a speech helps establish a connection with the audience, shows enthusiasm for the topic, and boosts confidence!

student microphone

Students LOVE this microphone!

This wireless Bluetooth microphone is perfect for student presentations, read alouds, speeches, and so much more! The microphone has 27 colorful LED lights that flicker in rhythm with the voice. You can also use this wireless microphone as a portable Bluetooth speaker. It’s available in a bunch of different colors, and it comes with a nice storage case.

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Public Speaking Tips for Students

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10 Public Speaking Tips for Students