At teacher accreditation courses the candidates all make presentations. This not done for academic reasons, like doing a thesis for a Ph.D., but for very practical reasons: it gives the new teacher a chance to practice speaking about T’ai Chi Chih to a group, and it also furnishes an opportunity to hear other presentations and get ideas from them.

Once the new teacher has their accreditation, it is expected that they will get busy scheduling frequent presentations as it is one of the best ways to build classes. Just to sit around and wait for classes to build themselves is foolish. T’ai Chi Chih has a message that almost everyone wants to hear, and good presentations to community centers, nursing homes for aging people, parent-teacher associations, and business corporations will usually receive enthusiastic responses. And, after classes are running smoothly, it is still necessary to keep making presentations as the eight-week courses go by very quickly.

A good presentation should have much personal reference, telling the teacher’s own experience with T’ai Chi Chih. This is much more effective than theoretical reference. During the presentation the teachers should get listeners on their feet to do two movements or so in order for attendees to get the idea that the movements are not difficult to do, and to feel what it’s like to have the Chi flow smoothly. The speaker should have a serene joyous attitude. If he or she performs movements while speaking‌ – which seems like a good idea – they should be performed with grace and elegance. Don’t make half-hearted motions. Never do the movements of T’ai Chi Chih carelessly.

The presentation must be interesting and get across the idea of “serenity in the midst of activity,” something that almost everyone wants these days, when release of tensions is a high priority on busy people’s agendas. If the speaker wants to progress to a deeper level in his or her talk, such material can be found in the small pamphlet Evolution Through Chi, obtainable [free on Justinstonetcc.com].

If the teacher has the conviction that what he or she is saying is interesting, and makes a glowing, enthusiastic appearance, the audience will be won over. Then it is necessary to have definite plans – the time and place of contemplated classes – to offer those who want to sign up for lessons.

This article is published in Spiritual Odyssey.

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