Teaching Tip 358 | “Plain Speaking – Eye Contact” | Malcolm Cox

Here is your 2-minute tip based on the book, “Plain speaking: How to preach and teach effectively” by David Bercot.

In the previous episode, we explored conversational preaching. What part does eye contact play? As Bercot says, ’None of us enjoy conversing with someone who rarely looks at us.’ 72 How do we maintain healthy eye contact?

  1. Look at people. Make eye contact with specific people – briefly. Don’t stare at someone.
  2. Move around. Look at people in the front row, the back row, the balcony, the left, the right—neglect no part of the room.
  3. Include the camera. If the lesson is being streamed live to people online, look directly at the camera from time to time.

What else do we need to consider?

  1. Screens. If you are reading text from a screen, take your eyes off the screen periodically to look at the people in the room.
  2. Notes. It is OK to look at your notes, but do not do so for long. Aim for a glance.
  3. Start and stop. You want the best connection with the congregation in the introduction and conclusion.
  4. Stories. When sharing a story, it is essential to maintain connection with your listeners. Nothing deflates the power of your illustration more than looking down at your notes just as you get to the punchline!

What are your thoughts on eye contact? How do you feel about it?

Next time, we will go on to explore how to listen to our listeners.

Has today’s tip been worth two minutes of your time? I hope so.

Remember to keep calm and carry on teaching.

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Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, or practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

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Remember to keep calm, and carry on teaching.

God bless, Malcolm