A Typical Meeting
Every meeting follows the same structure although this may differ slightly from club to club. We start promptly at 19:00 and the meeting usually
lasts for about 2 and a half hours with a short coffee and tea break in the middle.
We start off with a welcome opening, loyal toast and programme information which also covers any changes. We have pre-assigned roles (requested in advance by the members) of ah counter, grammarian and timekeeper and our Toastmaster for the evening will ask the members with these roles to explain their duties for the meeting.
Then there is a fun warm up as we are given a random subject chosen by the member who hosts this section. We stand up, introduce ourselves and say a few words on the subject. Don’t panic, guests can participate if they feel brave enough, or they can pass!
After that it is on to Table Topics, our impromptu speaking session where the host member gives out 3 or 4 topics with a little detail, and then calls up 3 or 4 different members at random to speak on these specific topics. They need to talk for 1 – 2 minutes while trying to construct a clear beginning, middle and end. Sometimes a rather nerve racking time for even the more experienced participants, but certainly an excellent exercise in speaking ‘off the cuff’!!
Moving from this we go to our prepared speeches, usually between 3 and 6 in total. Speakers range from total beginners to advanced, and speeches are 5 – 7 minutes long on any chosen subject.
After a short recess, we begin with speech evaluations, constructive criticism and feedback. Timekeeper, ah counter and grammarian give their reports and there is a general evaluation of the meeting as a whole. Voting slips have been distributed at the beginning of the meeting, and these are now filled in by all attending, thus nominating the worthy winners of the awards. We close off with the awards presentation and details for our next meeting.
For those with a little spare time to socialise, we adjourn to Crawdaddys just around the corner, to catch up, ask questions and enjoy some great conversation in general!