Your listeners will understand your talk better if you organize what you say in a logical sequence or linear pattern. This means that you tell the listeners what you are going to talk about and then go through the points you want to make. The most common pattern of organization is outlined below:
An example of this pattern is shown below:
Breeding butterflies has many advantages for the collector.
1. way of obtaining specimens
2. spares can be released into the wild
3. helps survival because butterflies have been protected from natural predators
The experience is a learning experience for the collector and a benefit to the species.
Connecting ideas by using transition words and phrases tells your listeners the relationship of one idea to the next. You can signal to your listener that you are going to put events in a sequence, add information, or make a comparison. You can signal that you want to emphasize or clarify a point. Using transition words and phrases helps your listener follow the flow of your ideas. Read the following example without transitional expressions:
In my physics class, we did lots of experiments that helped clarify scientific principles. I understood those principles better by doing those experiments.
These sentences would flow better if the speaker used transitional expressions as in the following example:
In my physics class, we did lots of experiments that helped clarify scientific principles. As a result, I understood those principles better.
In order to help your listeners understand, you may need to define a term that you use in your response. Read the following example:
My hobby is telemark skiing.
If the speaker does not define the term and listeners do not know what telemark skiing is, they might not understand the rest of the passage. Sometimes listeners can guess the meaning through the context of the passage, but sometimes they cannot. Here is the definition this speaker gave of telemark skiing:
That means skiing using telemark skis.