A TYPICAL VISTA TOASTMASTERS MEETING
7:00 PM – Meeting Call to Order: The club Sergeant at Arms calls the meeting to order, reads the club mission, leads us in the pledge of allegiance and introduces the club President.
Introduction of Toastmaster: The President introduces the Toastmaster for the evening who acts as a master of ceremonies.
Educational Moment: This segment is unique to our club. We felt that members should walk away from every meeting with some specific new bit of knowledge. Each week, a member volunteers to provide us with a one to three minute lesson – an “Educational Moment” – on a topic related to Toastmasters, communication or leadership.
Prepared Speeches: A new member receives two manuals in the New Member Kit. The Communication Manual contains ten speech projects. Each project builds on the previous one and introduces a new skill set that helps them to become a more effective speaker. Although each project has a specific set of objectives, the topic is entirely up to the speaker. Each speech in the Competent Communication manual is between 5-7 minutes long. It is the responsibility of both the speaker and the Toastmaster to make sure the speaker is introduced with a prepared introduction.
Impromptu Speaking: This part of the meeting called Table Topics™ helps members develop their impromptu speaking skills. The Toastmaster introduces the Topicsmaster who is responsible for preparing several questions on a specific topic. The Topicsmaster calls on members to speak for one to two minutes on the given topic. These topics might include current events, philosophical issues, hypothetical questions, etc. Since no one knows the topic beforehand, members get an excellent opportunity to develop the skill of thinking on their feet.
Introduction of Master Evaluator: The Toastmaster introduces the Master Evaluator who is responsible for coordinating the evaluation portion of the evening. The Master Evaluator will introduce individual Evaluators (see below), call for the functionary reports (see below) and evaluate the entire meeting.
Evaluations: An Evaluator is assigned to each member with a prepared speech. The Evaluator puts together an evaluation based on the project’s objectives. They have two to three minutes to provide their feedback by pointing out the speaker’s strengths and making suggestions for future improvement. The Evaluator develops their critical thinking and feedback skills in this process.
Functionary Reports: The second manual given to a new member is called the Competent Leadership Manual. This manual focuses on leadership skills such as listening, thinking critically, planning and organizing, managing time, mentoring and building a team. These skills are discussed throughout ten projects. Within these projects are various meeting roles each member is expected to perform, such as Timer, Ah Counter and Grammarian. These roles are called functionaries. They provide positive and meaningful feedback to each speaker in a fun yet constructive manner. At this point in the meeting the Master Evaluator asks each Functionary to give a report on their specific duty for the evening.
Presentation of Awards: During the meeting, members vote for the Best Speaker (prepared speech), the Best Table Topics™ Speaker (impromptu speaking), the Best Evaluator and the Most Improved Speaker (anyone who spoke). Once the votes are tabulated, our President hands out ribbons to the winners.
8:30 PM – Announcements and Adjournment: After final comments or announcements, we ask for feedback from our visitors about the meeting. We hope you had a wonderful time!