This week my voice got hoarse, which made it difficult to speak loudly during class, which made me realize how much I rely on yelling to control my classroom. Since that fallback was no longer an option, I resorted to a technique my roommate has mentioned a few times. It’s called the whisper technique.
I started talking in a normal voice, then abruptly dropped to an inaudible volume, keeping my facial expressions and gestures animated. Immediately, the classroom became silent. “Teacher, what are you saying?” some kids asked. Others started mouthing questions to me, mirroring my widened eyes and arm gestures. More eyes than ever were on me. Magic.
Just goes to show that often the way to get heard is not by speaking louder. Louder is rarely the key.