d. Begin Well. Have your initial remarks well in mind. The first few moments
are the most difficult. Get past these and things will go well. It is advisable to have the
lesson introduction so well in mind that no notes are needed.
e. Use the Familiar. Review previous instruction. By starting with a reference
to a phase of training previously completed, the instructor immediately causes the
students to focus their attention on something with which they are familiar. The
instructor thus meets the soldiers on common ground.
f. Humor. Tell a story (if you can do this well). Nothing releases tension as
quickly as a bit of humor injected early in the introduction. Remember that the story
should make a point that can be related to the subject. When setting out to get a laugh,
try to get one, but don't be discouraged if your students don't burst their sides. The next
class may respond more vigorously. No great harm is done if a story falls flat.
g. Slow Down. When a person is nervous, body activities tend to speed up.
Instructors should remember this when they are faced with nervousness. They should
move deliberately and not talk too fast. After a few moments of deliberate control, the
stage fright will pass, and the instructor's normal poise and bearing will take over.
a. Soldier Response. Soldiers react to what they see as well as to what they
hear and understand. Each instructor must make certain that he meets military
standards of appearance, bearing, and bodily control. Posture, bodily movements, and
gestures can be highly expressive. They are a vital part of communication. Gestures
can make the difference between an excellent, enthusiastic presentation that stimulates
soldiers to effective learning and a dull, uninteresting lesson to which soldiers make a
weak response. Any physical attitude assumed, bodily movement, or gesture that
attracts attention to itself is distracting and is a hindrance rather than an aid.
Movements should appear free, natural, and spontaneous. Remember to look natural.
b. Position. Maintain good posture. Take a position from which the entire class
can see you and you can see all of the class. Stand erect, with weight balanced on
your feet. Look physically and mentally alert. Relax and let your hands and arms hang
freely at your sides. Your hands will not appear as large and awkward to students as
they might seem to you. If you cannot let them rest on your side until ready to use
them, clasp them in back of you or let one hand rest on the speaker's stand. Don't
wring and twist your hands. The basic rule to remember is moderation. Don't remain
glued to one spot and don't move all of the time. When you do move, move briskly and
with purpose. As your skill and experience increase, you will find movement becoming
less obvious and more meaningful.