Coming up with fresh, exciting and interesting impromptu speech topics for either your public speaking class or Toastmaster's Club (table topics) can be a chore. Especially if the task is dropped on you at short notice!
Try these. There are 11 themed lists of topic ideas below.
The aim is fluency and confidence. Park truth or reality to one side and encourage speakers to allow their imagination to free-wheel through the possibilities the topics present. In short, have fun and laugh while you learn!
This list of impromptu speech topics is themed around books with extremely odd titles.
(The titles are real. Google 'odd book titles' and all will be revealed!)
I used them at my Toastmaster's Club recently. As a set-up I announced we were at a book fair. We were all writers of extraordinary works and as such it was our challenge to promote our book to would-be book sellers.
Each speaker was given a title for which they had to provide a synopsis, say who their intended audience was and why they had written the work. The results were wonderful impromptu speeches full of fun.
Acronyms are abbreviations formed by taking the first letter of each word in a frequently used phrase.
Ask your speakers to explain what the letters stand for, the history of the acronym and what derivations there are. Again, encourage flexibility. Answers need not be restricted by little trifles like truth!
If you need more than the ones I've listed, check out this wonderful resource: Everyday Acronyms
List how ever many commonplace objects you need to cater for your group.
Examples: wheelbarrow, door handle, mouse pad, stapler, coffee mug, window...
You get the idea.
Each speaker is to share what life brings them from the perspective of their object. What's good? What's a nightmare? The biggest thrill?
Compile a list of starters. The speaker must use that sentence beginning as the basis of their speech.
In this set of impromptu speech topics each speaker must incorporate the bumper sticker phrase you give them into their speech in what ever way they wish.
Examples of bumper sticker sayings:
The speaker is to tell the story of how the cliche came into being. Who used it? Why?
The aim of the game in this impromptu speech topic collection is have speakers sell as hard as they can an object that they've just been given.
Prepare a bag full of small items. Have each speaker put their hand in and without looking, pull one out. Now they sell the benefits and features of it to the audience.
Objects could be: a pen, a child's pacifier, a toy car, a nail file, a stone ... Anything small enough to fit a medium sized bag. Tell them they needn't stick with its original purpose!
Transport your group back or forward in time. From your nominated time perspective give speakers impromptu speech topics inviting comment on common events of today.
Example: The time period is 1920.
Topics you want them to talk on:
terrorism, global warming, the internet, computers, mobile phones, email, air travel, supermarkets, fast food, high rises, birth control, fashion, sustainability, women working outside the home...
Gather up a collection of shoe pictures, as many differing varieties of footwear that you can.
Examples: golf shoes, dress shoes, tramping boots, jandals, sandals, high heels, boots, mules, slippers ...
Each speaker gets a different picture.
Who wears them?
What they do?
What's the occasion?
How do they feel?
The task is to build a full profile based on the type of shoe.
Take along a color swatch or color chart from a paint shop.
Each speaker is given a color - pink, red, orange, yellow, brown, tan, black, purple ... They must use that color as the foundation of their speech.
Each of those associations could spark a speech.
Prepare a list of awards - one for each speaker.
The task of the speaker is to give their award acceptance speech.
For more on impromptu speech topics and impromptu speaking check out these pages:
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