Today we had an input on voice management and how important it is to use your voice correctly. When I sluggishly walked in to the lecture theatre at 9 this morning, I had no idea what I was going to learn. I guess I had never really put much thought into it. I guess that I had always assumed that I’d be okay. However, thinking about it in hindsight, what did I think was going to happen? That by using some sort of telepathic connection, the children would hear the meltdown in my head and stare silently? That’s just madness.
The vocal chords are a tool. A very powerful one at that, if and when used correctly. The lecturer gave an amazing analogy. Imagine a balloon, blow it up and don’t tie it. The balloon is your lungs and diaphragm, full of air. The part you left open, is your vocal chord. If you let the air out you will hear a noise from the rubber flapping together. In short, that’s what happens when you speak. This made it apparent, that if you don’t use your air intake correctly all your doing is straining the vocal chords. I know what your thinking, it’s crazy right? How the lack of knowledge of your lung capacity and breath intake can cause vocal fatigue but hey, every day is a school day, quite literally. After a few breathing exercises I was impressed by how little I knew. I was beginning to understand that if I only use a certain percentage of my lung capacity, I won’t be able to get to that optimum projection without strain.
Not only did I learn about the importance of using your voice correctly, I began to understand the importance of not using your voice at all. Who knew silence could be your friend. ‘The teacher look’ is something we discussed in this mornings lecture. Now, I have been told I have that figured out. However, working in an after school care is a little different from a classroom and although I have had that experience, I am still nervous about being in that classroom environment. No child is the same and certainly, no group of children are the same. My look of disapproval may have worked with the children I knew but who is to say it will work with the children in my class.
For now, I’ll be keeping these notes around for my placement.