By Akili Dada Interns

We often think of public speaking as an innate talent, or something that people have been trained in from a young age.  That was our notion until we had a public speaking training session with Michael Balaoing. After the two days training, we were all equipped with so much information that we could not wait to share it with our sisters who are still in high school.

In the preparation for the presentation, we organized the needed props, put the ideas together, divided the roles and read more on the topic. This gave us a sense of responsibility as we took initiative to plan and organize ourselves to ensure the presentation was perfect.

During the scholars’ leadership academy, we led our own training on how to do the following during a public speech:

  • Eliminate weak language
  • Enhance confidence
  • Involve the audience
  • Transport the listeners by creating images and painting pictures in their minds

The topic became clearer to us as we shared the ideas with them. In the process of training the scholars, we were able to apply the skills we learned and they were implanted in our minds more as “practice makes permanent.”

The scholars were receptive and very eager to learn from us, which gave us a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment. We welcomed their feedback and were glad that they felt confident enough to ask for clarification and help us become better presenters.  We also found it very effective for us to teach them because they were free with us and could closely relate because, although we’ve completed high school, they are still our peers.