PRINCIPLES OF EFFECTIVE MILITARY INSTRUCTION: TECHNIQUES AND
Section I: IMPROVING INSTRUCTOR SPEECH
a. An Army instructor must speak clearly, and what he says must make sense.
You will find your leadership and instructional duties much easier if you have good
speech habits. Most of our training depends on oral presentation. If you do not use
good speech techniques, you lose the interest of your students; students become bored
and confused; and they soon become discouraged in their attempts to learn.
b. An instructor may know his subject thoroughly, have an effective teaching
personality, and be well prepared for the lesson, but the effectiveness of his oral
presentation will depend on the degree of skill he has in using these specific techniques
of good speech. Lacking a serious speech impediment, any instructor who makes a
serious effort to improve his lesson delivery can develop into a "top-notch" instructor.
CLASS PROCEDURE TECHNIQUES
Realize that you are not making speeches or talking at your students, but are
talking with them. The purpose of speech is to communicate ideas. An instructor must
establish and keep personal contact with the class. Here are some suggestions that will
a. Attention. Get the attention of the class first. Do not start the class until you
have the attention of the students. Sometimes walking to the center of the platform will
cause your soldiers to quiet down and listen. More often, it will be necessary to ask for
their attention. A simple "Your attention, please!" will usually produce the desired result.
b. Eye Contact. Look at and talk to your soldiers. Observe people in earnest
conversation and you will notice that the speaker does not look out the window or at the
floor or ceiling. He looks his listeners in the eye. He may not know he is doing so. His
purpose naturally finds its expression in this personal contact. Address your students,
not the training aids or the distant landscape. Never talk while facing the chalkboard;
your speech will be muffled. Give every student the feeling that you are looking at and
talking to him. Keep eye contact.
c. Voice Tone. Speak in a conversational tone. Do not let your voice reflect an
impersonal, indifferent attitude. Do not orate or declaim. Make frequent use of the
pronoun "you." Identify yourself with the students by "you and I" or "we." Leave the
impression that you and they have something in common.
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