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Organizing Speeches

Let's talk about why and how we organize speeches.

Doug Pruim

on 9 February 2012

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Transcript of Organizing Speeches

Hello, Public Speaking
Class of Awesomeness! Today, we're going to talk about Organization Chapter 11:
Organizing the Speech Chapter 12:
Types of Organizational Arrangements You are probably already aware of basic outlining:


I. Main Point
A. Subordinate to main point I
B. Coordinate with subpoint A
1. Subordinate to subpoint B
2. Coordinate with sub-subpoint 1.
a. Subordinate to sub-subpoint 2.
b. Coordinate with sub-subpoint 2.
1) Subordinate to sub-sub-subpoint b.
2) Coordinate with sub-sub-sub-subpoint (1)
II. Main point: Coordinate with main point I

(Repeat as necessary. And this goes on until you've made your point...)

Conclusion Main Points SupportingPoints Transitions This stuff might seem boring,
but good organization really helps both speaker
and listener! Here are a few things to remember... Main points express the key ideas and major themes of the speech. Use your Specific Purpose and Thesis Statement as guides for each main point. Specific Purpose always has three parts:

To (inform, persuade, or honor) (audience) (subject matter). For example:
To inform my class about nuclear fusion. To persuade old people to play rugby. To eulogize Aunt Betty at her funeral service. (or... To roast Doug Pruim during class for being a crazy teacher. A Thesis Statement is always a complete sentence:
(in other words ... (Subject) + (Predicate) (Noun) (Verb) (Geometry) (changed my life.) (Shamwows) (are amazing.) (Grandma) (was a great woman.) (Limiting terms for Senators) (would benefit the American people by allowing more voices in the great debate of the American experiment.) (Zombies) (are coming.) Number of main points Keep it between two to five (at the most). Only because it's hard to follow a speech with lots of points. Try to think of ways to categorize points into larger units and concepts. "Supporting points represent the supporting material you have gathered to fill out or justify the main points and lead the audience to accept the purpose of the speech" ... The big thing to remember is that all your points should support the bigger points which ultimately support your purpose and thesis. If it doesn't ... get rid of it! Principles of Organizing Unity Coherence Balance Does it all tie together? Are all your points logical and consistent with everything else? Your points should be about the same length OR they should be getting progressively smaller. Audiences like balance, and it gives them an indication of how long the speech will take. Transitions are the gluey phrases and words that tie your speech together. They are often in restate-forecast form. For example:
Now that I've told you about the benefits of capri pants for men, let's talk about ways you can accessorize with them. Or they are words, like "now" "Furthermore" "consequently"
"therefore". Or you can use rhetorical questions. For example:
Will rhetorical questions be helpful as transitions? Let's think about that. Topical There are many ways to organize your speech. Today, we'll look at just a few. By the way, I love talking about organizational patterns.
They are very helpful tools. They take disorganized thoughts. And make them beautiful pictures. They concentrate the message and add force to your words. Chronological Spatial Causal Problem-Solution Narrative Circular Three circles Monroe's Motivated Sequence Refutation Comparative Advantage Persuasive Patterns We'll talk about these later. This is when you talk about something and cover a few unrelated facts about it. For example:
Central Thesis: I am an interesting guy.
Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about my interestingness.

I. I can make pizza.
II. I have three cute kids.
III. I've been to several Metallica concerts.
Conclusion. This is when you talk about something in order of event. It's good for "how to" speeches, "life story" speeches, or perhaps explanations of a history or timeline. For example:

Central Thesis: My day was marked by four great meals.
Specific Purpose: To inform chefs about what I ate today.

I. Breakfast was an array of french toast and fruits.
II. Lunch consisted of toast points and celery.
III. At snack time, I drank directly from a chocolate fountain.
IV. Dinner was a combination of pizza and tacos.
Conclusion This is good for describing a physical arrangement, scene, event or object. This could be describing a body from top to bottom, describing a country from east to west, or informing a group of investigators about a crime scene. For example:
Central Thesis: Your room is messy.
Specific Purpose: To inform you of the things I think are messy in your room.

I. Your bed is unmade.
II. Your closet is overflowing.
III. Your dresser is overstuffed.
IV. Your windows have mold on them.
Conclusion You use this style to convey a story. You can use characters, settings, and dialogue. Have you ever read the story "If you give a pig a pancake..." I like to think in terms of a story arc for this:
Exposition, Turning point, Climax, Crisis, Resolution For example:

Central Thesis: My friend's life has been an amazing journey.
Specific Purpose: To inform you about my friend's divorce.

I. Their marriage started out like everyone else's.
II. But then he started suspecting her of infidelity.
III. Then one day he found another man's shirt in his room.
IV. After confronting her, she walked out on him.
V. Despite the turmoil, my friend has discovered that he deserved to be treated better than this.
Conclusion You could use this to explain the water cycle.

For example:

I. Snow melts on the mountains and flows to the river.
II. Water flows from the river to the oceans.
III. Water in the oceans evaporates in to the air.
IV. Water in the air condenses and snows on the mountains.
Conclusion This is something I'll explain in class. So that's Organization.
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