The Grammarian role is great for practicing and developing your listening and feedback skills.
The role has three duties, which are:
- To report on interesting, unusual or effective uses of speech and also on any grammatical errors or ‘inappropriate’ uses such as bad language
- To set a ‘word of the day’ and report on its use – ideally a word that is not in everyday use, but avoiding the obscure or unpronounceable
- To report on hesitations (Ums and Ahs) where they distract from the speaker’s message
Before the Meeting
- Choose a ‘word of the day’ and produce 4 or 5 posters with the word displayed sufficiently large to the legible to those attending the meeting
- Bring these with you together with blu-tack or sticky tape to attach them to the walls, windows or furniture in the room (generally the better the word is displayed, the more it will be used which adds some fun & interest to the meeting in general)
- It’s a good idea to practice and prepare your introduction so that this is as smooth as possible. Practice will significantly help you control any nerves.
At the Meeting
- Try to arrive at least 15 minutes before the meeting start time so that you can get ready and display your word of the day posters effectively. It’s a good idea to check that you can read them from all seats in the room.
- After the Timekeeper has been introduced, the Toastmaster will return to the stage and introduce you.
- Come up to the stage, shake hands with the Toastmaster and greet the audience by saying “Mr/Madam Toastmaster, fellow Toastmasters and most welcome guests…..
- After your introduction by the Toastmaster, explain the role of the Grammarian and announce the word of the day, giving its meaning and a brief explanation/examples of its use.
- Listen carefully to all the speakers and report your findings when called upon by the Toastmaster towards the end of the meeting.
- Listen carefully to all the speakers use of language and grammar and Um’s and Ah’s and include this in your report at the end of the meeting.
NOTES & TIPS
- Although Grammarian is often seen as a minor role, it is a serious speaking opportunity which can make an important contribution to the meeting. Done well, it really adds to the overall enjoyment of the meeting.
- Please avoid the trap of giving a further speech or table topic evaluation, the role is to report on language and grammar so stick to this!
- Finally, if you have not completed your Competent Leadership Award and still need this role signed-up you should: (A) give your Competent Leadership manual to another member before the meeting starts with the required role identified and ask her/him to complete the required section; and (B) ensure you cover all of the objectives of the selected Competent Leadership project during your performance of the role.