Toastmasters meetings that are fun and entertaining as well as educational will encourage members and guests to return. One of the best ways to make your meeting fun is to have fun Table Topics. While they are usually questions that can be related to the theme of the meeting, here are a couple of methods that can be used to make the Table Topics session different and entertaining.
Tell a story
In this method, you set the stage for a story. The participants then “write” the story. Here is an example.
You are on the space ship “Spaceflower.” The ship is carrying 5000 colonists to settle the second moon around Aldebaran II. Everybody has been in deep sleep, suspended animation, for the last 300 years. You were one of the first colonists to be awakened since you are the pilot of the shuttle craft to carry the colonists to their new home.
The first participant then “writes” the first chapter of the story, for one to two minutes. The next participant then has the choice to continue the scene that was told by the previous participant or to start a new “chapter” and scene.
In our club, we settled the new world, established a new form of government with a king, found native plants that could be used for food, created libraries to maintain our heritage and knowledge, and finally celebrated our first year on our new home.
Paint pictures with words
As a Toastmaster, you use words as tools to give a speech. You must be able to communicate your ideas. Each participant is shown a picture of an object. They must then describe that object WITHOUT using the name of the object. After they have finished, the members must try to guess the object described. If the audience cannot guess, the participant is disqualified from the best Table Topics award.
This method is good to use in a corporate environment. The participant has to deliver “bad” news to employees of the company. Another participant has to deliver “good” news to the employees. What is interesting about this method is you can get a feeling about what concerns or good feelings the employees are having about the company for which they work.
As you can see, there are a number of different methods other than simple question and answer that can be used when you are the Table Topicsmaster. There are more. Each method teaches the participant to speak “off the cuff” and build their speaking skills. And remember, when you are Table Topicsmaster, you do not have to participate and talk for the one to two minutes.
Area 62 Governor