3 public speaking lessons from Julia Child

Every episode of “The French Chef” is a recipe for public speaking.

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And while speaking for nearly half an hour, she had to make a classic French dish from scratch, explaining clearly how you could make the same dish in your kitchen. You should try it sometime.

Anyone whose public speaking consists of training, teaching or lecturing would do well to study Child’s first and most famous television series, “The French Chef.” Launched in 1963, it revolutionized how Americans cooked at home, created a new vision of what public television could be, and stands as a great example of instructional speaking.

“I won’t do anything unless I’m told why I’m doing it,” Child told Terry Gross in an interview. “So I felt that we needed fuller explanations so that if you followed one of those recipes, it should turn out exactly right.”

She became the model to follow, and while today food television has its own channel, Child was a pioneer in teaching cooking on television.

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