Teaching Students About Pitch in Speech

As teachers, one of our greatest challenges is helping students communicate effectively in public speaking assignments. It requires more than just memorization of information or the development of an essay. It is vital that students understand how to use pitch in their speech to engage their audience and convey a clear message. In this blog post, we’ll explore what pitch is, why it’s important, and how to teach students about pitch in speech.

What is pitch in speech?

Pitch in speech refers to the highness or lowness of a voice when speaking. It is determined by the frequency of sound waves, with a high pitch having a greater frequency and a low pitch having a lower frequency.

Why is pitch important in public speaking?

Pitch is a powerful tool in public speaking because it can capture an audience’s attention and keep them engaged. Varying pitch throughout a speech can also emphasize important points, and help students sound more confident and assertive.

Teaching students about the pitch in speech:

Introduce the concept of pitch. Start by explaining to students what pitch is and how it works. Offer an example or two where pitch changes convey different emotions or purposes.

Practice pitch exercises. Work with students to practice pitch exercises that can build the muscles they use in their speech patterns. High pitch, low pitch, and even, mid-range pitch can be practiced with voice exercises.

Use pitch in public speaking. Encourage students to use pitch while preparing their speeches. Have them practice their speeches with variations on their pitch, and work with them on finding a good, conversational tone for their speech.

Emphasize important points. Encourage students to emphasize the most important points of their speech by manipulating their pitch. For example, they might use a higher pitch to emphasize a positive point and a lower pitch to emphasize a negative point.

Record speeches. Use technology such as phones, tablets, or computers to record student speeches. Play back the recording, and help students identify areas where their pitch needs variation and where their conversational tone falls flat.

Teaching students about pitch in speech is a critical tool in public speaking. It can encourage students to use a more expressive voice, improve communication, and enhance their ability to engage an audience. By using the tips listed above and introducing pitch exercises in the classroom, students can build the skills needed to communicate clearly and effectively in their public speaking assignments.

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