DID YOU KNOW

Congratulations!

You’ve decided to step into a leadership role and take the chance to make a positive impact on the lives of others. Being a club officer allows you to challenge yourself, learn new skills and make decisions that foster success and help make your Toastmasters Club the best place it can be.

You don’t have to make this journey on your own. Seasoned Toastmasters will help you every step of the way as a Club Officer.

Did you know that each Division within the District puts on training sessions twice a year that all Club officers are encouraged to attend? Having at least 4 of the 7 officers take training (in both the fall and winter) will get your club one point towards President’s Distinguished Status.  A common misconception is that club officers must take training in their own Division-this is a fallacy; Toastmasters can register for any training session in the District that fits their schedule. Also, training outside the district may be available to members as well. Be sure to check the District 42 events calendar for updates.

Toastmasters International has a plethora of resources available to help members achieve success in their roles. The most important one is the Club Officer Handbook available HERE (login to Toastmasters International to view) 

Thinking about getting your DTM in the future? Did you know that you can use your club officer experience to help reach this goal? Be sure to check with your Club’s VP Education or see the following LINK for more details. 

Bravo to you fellow Toastmasters for embarking on a journey to help your club achieve greatness. Good luck to you in your role as a Club Officer. I encourage all Toastmasters to consider taking on the challenge in the future and sharpening their communication and leadership skills even more.

Regards,

Twila Tayfel
Calgary PaceSetters Club

Dear fellow Toastmasters,

By the time you read this, District 42 Toastmasters will be descending upon the City of Regina for the 2024 District Conference. The Conference promises to be a spectacular event and I am sure all who attend will come back energized and inspired.

Let’s learn more about the beautiful host city, Regina.

Did you know……

  • Regina became the capital city of Saskatchewan in 1905. 
  • Regina is the closest city to the centre of North America.
  • On July 5th, 1937, Regina recorded a temperature of 43.3c. 
  • Regina has been training RCMP Officers at its training depot since 1885 (when it was still called the NWMP) and all members of the RCMP must attend a rigorous 6 month course. 
  • The Saskatchewan Roughriders CFL team have the third highest merchandise sales of any Canadian professional sports team. 
  • Regina’s Wascana Centre Park is larger than Vancouver’s Stanley Park and NYC’s Central Park combined!
  • At the edge of Wascana Lake, look for the Albert Street Memorial Bridge. It’s the longest bridge over the shortest span of water in the world.
  • Regina is 577 metres above sea level in terms of elevation
  • The original name for Regina was Wascana but the city was re-named in honour of Queen Victoria in 1882. 

Enjoy the queen city and conference if you are attending. If you are unable to attend, I encourage you to plan a trip and see all the sights of the beautiful city of Regina.


Until next month,

Twila Tayfel

Calgary PaceSetters

Are you one of those members who took the plunge recently and decided to join Toastmasters? If so, welcome to an amazing community of like-minded people who want to improve their communication and leadership skills in a safe and supportive environment.

Joining Toastmasters can feel overwhelming at first with all the terms, roles, projects and so on. When I first joined Toastmasters back in 2013, I too, felt like there was so much to learn and do. With the help of the veteran members in the club, I learned my way and have continued to belong to a fantastic club!

The best place to start for resources is within your own club. Ask your VP Membership if there is a mentorship program. If so, take advantage of the program and find a mentor who can guide you through it. If your club does not have a formal program, ask your VP Education for some advice and guidance. Also, other members are a great resource; they’ll be happy to help you with tips, tricks and suggestions to help you on your journey. Be sure to also take advantage of your club’s website to look for resources. My club, the Calgary Pace Setters, has a multitude of items available for new members. Have a look at the RESOURCES page. Also, we have a page with forms you can use to take on a MEETING ROLE. 

District 42 is also a treasure trove of valuable resources for both new and seasoned Toastmasters. From there, you can navigate to find information relevant to the topic you’re searching for. Want Pathways information, click HERE 

Looking for further opportunities to expand your Toastmasters circle or challenge yourself? Check out the D42  CALENDAR for events as well as the OPPORTUNITIES tab for chances to showcase your skills to the district.

Finally, the Toastmasters International website RESOURCES is where you will find everything from public speaking tips to videos to Base Camp and your Pathways projects. 

There is truly something for everyone amongst all of these resources. Have fun exploring the various forms of material that is available for Toastmasters and best of luck in your journey to self-improvement.

Regards,

Twila Tayfel
VP Membership
Calgary Pace Setters Club

Did you know:

Did you know that Toastmasters is turning 100 in 2024? The first official Toastmasters meeting was held on October 22nd, 1924 at the YMCA in Santa Ana, California.

In honour of this milestone, let’s take a trip back to the past and look at some of the notable accomplishments from 1924.

January 25: The first Winter Olympic Games open in Chamonix, France. 

January 29: Carl Taylor patents an ice cream cone rolling machine.

March 4: Claydon Sunny publishes Happy Birthday To You.

March 5: The Computing-Tabulating-Recording Corp becomes IBM.

March 21: The first foreign language course is broadcast on U.S. radio.

April 1: The Royal Canadian Air Force is formed. 

April 3: American actor Marlon Brando was born in Omaha, Nebraska (d. 2004). 

April 6: Four planes leave Seattle on the first successful around-the-world flight.

April 17: Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures & Louis B Mayer Co merged to form Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM).

April 18: The first crossword puzzle is published by Simon & Schuster.

May 4: The Summer Olympic Games begin in France.

July 1: Direct, regular transcontinental airmail service forms between New York and San Francisco.

November 27: The first Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is held in New York City. 

November 30: The first photo facsimile is transmitted across the Atlantic by radio from London to New York City. 

December 30: Astronomer Edwin Hubble formally announces the existence of other galactic systems at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society. 

Happy 100th Anniversary Toastmasters International! Here’s to another 100 successful years!

Cheers!

Did You Know: 2024 Contest Edition

  • The 2024 Contest Season is fast approaching. This year District 42 will have two contests-the International Speech Contest and the Evaluation Contest.
  • The first World Championship of Public Speaking was held in 1938 and had grown to over 50,000 participants in 149 countries by 2022.
  • Henry Wiens was the first winner of the World Championship of Public Speaking. He was from Reedley, California.
  • The first winner from outside the United States was Canadian Glenn E. Carrol in 1960.
  • In 1977 Evelyn Jane Burgay became the first woman to win and 5 years later the first champion from outside North America was crowned (Kenneth Bernard-Australia)
  • Marie C Pyne became the first European to be given the title when she won in 1985.
  • 2014 champion Dananjaya Hettiarachchi of Sri Lanka was the first Asian to win the championship.
  • District 42 has numerous resources to help you be successful as either a contestant, Contest Chair, judge or other role. Have a look here https://d42tm.org/speech-contest-resources-2/
  • Speech contests are an excellent way to practice your speech writing and delivery skills, listening skills, and time-management and organizational skills. They are an opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and try something new.
  • I encourage you to participate as either a contestant (if you are eligible), take on a role or come out and support your fellow Toastmasters. Here’s to a successful contest season.

 

Regards,

Twila Tayfel

Calgary PaceSetters Club VP Membership

District 42 Dispatch Co-Editor

Happy New Year Fellow Toastmasters!

New Year’s is rooted in many traditions and superstitions.

Have a read-through and learn about some of these traditions from around the world. Maybe you will be inspired to try something new next time December 31st and January 1st roll around.

#Did you know that the first ball drop in New York City happened in 1907 to ring in 1908? New York Times owner Adolph Ochs created the event to draw attention to the Times’s new headquarters; it remains one of the most watched and attended events of the year.

Immediately after midnight in Brazil, people will head to the beach. While there, you are supposed to jump seven waves while making seven wishes. The tradition is rooted in paying homage to the goddess of water, Yemanja.

The tradition of las doce uvas de la suerte was started in Spain in the late 19th century. Eating 12 grapes (one for each strike of the clock) before the clock finishes striking midnight is believed to ward off evil and increase your chances of having an auspicious and prosperous new year.

People in Japan start the new year by dining on a bowl of warm soba noodles. The tradition dates back to the Kamakura period of Japanese history and is linked to a Buddhist temple giving out soba noodles to the poor. Soba noodles are firm but easy to bite so it is believed eating them symbolizes a literal break away from the old year.

In Haiti, people celebrate Haitian Independence Day on January 1st. They eat pumpkin soup, soup joumou, which was a delicacy that enslaved black people were not permitted to eat. Soup joumou is often shared with other families as each family makes their variation of the soup.

Those who live in Denmark believe that throwing plates at loved one’s houses will bring good luck. The more accumulated dinnerware you have on your doorstep, the better your year will be according to the superstition.

12 round fruits-one for each month of the year- are served with the New Year’s Eve meal in the Philippines. Round fruits are thought to bring prosperity due to their resemblance to coins. Enjoy digging into a feast of watermelons, apples, plums, oranges and so on.

Cape Town, South Africa, celebrates the new year with a fireworks show and the sounds of the Malay Choirs. January 2nd is a special day in Cape Town as well. It is called Tweede Nuwe Jaar which means second new year. This date was chosen because in the past it was the date that slaves would be allowed to rest after working the holiday celebrations for their masters.

Finally, in Canada, cities often have concerts, fireworks shows and a countdown to midnight on December 31st. On January 1st, many people might partake in a polar bear plunge or spend time with their family doing something quiet after the celebrations on New Year’s Eve.

However you celebrate, I wish you the best in the New Year. Enjoy the journey that 2024 will bring.

Twila Tayfel
Dispatch Co-Editor

Now that the second round of Club Officer training is underway, it is time to highlight what these members do before, during and after meetings.

A full slate of Club Officers includes the President, Vice President Education, Vice President Membership, Vice President  Public Relations, Treasurer, Secretary, Sergeant at Arms and Past President.

Club President
The Club President is the face of your club. They are a liaison between the Area and the Club. Presidents will lead executive meetings, share important information with the club and encourage the club to meet the goals of the Club Success Plan. The President will work closely with the Vice President  Education to make sure that meetings are of high quality and meet the needs of members and potential members.

Vice President Education
The Vice President  Education has several responsibilities. Their main role is to make sure that all members have selected a pathway and are working on completing projects from their chosen roles. Vice Presidents Education work with the President and other executives to plan interesting meetings of high quality that help members reach their Toastmasters goals. This member also approves the completion of Pathways levels, ensures all club members are on Easy-Speak (or whatever your club uses) and is an encouraging voice for the club.

Vice President  Membership
The VP Membership is usually the first person a prospective member will communicate with to find out about the club. This club officer will ensure emails are answered promptly with accurate and timely information about your club. They will also welcome guests to meetings and help make them feel welcome at the club. After someone expresses an interest in joining, the VP Membership will help facilitate the process of becoming a member.

Vice President  Public Relations
The Public Relations position can look very different from club to club. Their primary responsibility is to promote the club and its accomplishments. Social media is the primary tool for carrying out this role. The more interesting and relevant information that gets posted, the better it is so that your club can be found on Google searches. The VP PR role also has PR Mastermind sessions to help with doing this position successfully.

Treasurer
Treasurers are responsible for managing the club’s finances in a fiscally responsible manner. They collect dues and ensure that the club is in good standing with Toastmasters International.

Secretary
Secretaries record minutes of executive meetings as well as club business meetings. Secretaries may also have additional duties such as keeping track of records (meeting agendas, meeting roles, projects completed by members), maintaining the club guest book (and passing the information to the VP Membership), and answering emails from Toastmasters International.

Sergeant At Arms
Their role is to ensure the meeting room is set up in a manner that welcomes members and guests alike. The Sergeant At Arms also makes sure that the club has enough materials to run a meeting (ballot slips, a ballot counter can, agendas, writing materials and so on). The Sergeant At Arms should also make sure that the Club’s banner is displayed and that any technology needed for the meeting is working. They will also clean up the room at the end of the meeting.

Past President
The Past President is available to provide guidance and support to any member of the executive and to advise the club in any matters that arise.

If you think one of these roles may be calling to you, be sure to check the District 42 Events Calendar and register for training to learn. I encourage everyone who wants to take on a Toastmasters Challenge to consider taking on an Executive role next year. There are many opportunities to learn from others on how to do the role and you will never be alone in your journey.

TOASTMASTERS MAGAZINE

Did you know that one of the many benefits of being a Toastmaster is receiving the Toastmasters Magazine?

The Toastmasters Magazine is sent to your inbox on a monthly basis and contains many articles that are of relevance and interest to members all around the world.

Did you know that the bulletins from Toastmasters International were once called The Gavel?

An edition of The Gavel from 1930 is available on the Toastmasters International website; peruse the bulletin at this LINK.

Did you know you can find back copies of the Toastmasters Magazine on the Toastmasters International website? Issues are available by visiting the website (the section is Toastmaster Magazine Issues)

Did you know members of District 42 have been featured in the Toastmasters Magazine? In the September 2023 issue, Kelly Kaur was featured. Read about Kelly and her many accomplishments HERE.

Take a few minutes each month to read the magazine and discover tips, tricks, and information that can help you achieve your Toastmasters goals.

Did you know that sleep is one of the most underrated tools in a Toastmasters toolbox? Sleep is often taken for granted but it should actually be prioritized in our busy lives. What does sleep do for us?

  • Sleep is essential for every process in our body
  • Good health is important for our baseline mental health as even one night of sleep deprivation can impact your mood the next day
  • Having enough sleep improves our focus, concentration, memory and performance
  • Proper sleep can lower your risk of heart disease, depression and inflammation and help improve your immune system

Here are some tips to help you get better quality sleep

  • As much as possible, keep a consistent sleep schedule (e.g. go to bed around the same time every night and wake up around the same time every morning)
  • Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep every night
  • Find stress reducers that work well for you; check out the Mayo Clinic’s LIST for suggestions.
  • Be more active during the day and try to get outside/be in natural light more often.

Here are some resources if you are interested in learning more about the vital process that is sleep.

  1. Brain basics: Understanding sleep. (2022)
  2. How does sleep affect your heart health? (2021)
  3. How much sleep do I need? (2017)
  4. Kilgore, W. D. S., et al. (2022). Sleep quality and duration are associated with greater trait emotional intelligence.

Sweet dreams!

# Did you know that one of the favourite hobbies of Toastmasters is reading? I reached out to several Toastmasters and asked them to share recommendations for books that they thought other Toastmasters might be interested in. Have a peruse through the list and see if any titles interest you.

Toastmasters Book Club October 2023

What are we reading this month?

Joanne Smith, DTM, shares her recommendations:

Craig ValentineWorld Class Speaking, World Class Speaking in Action and Speaker’s Edge
Garr ReynoldsPresentationZen and PresentationZen Design
Nancy DuarteSlide:ology and Resonate
Chip Heath and Dan HeathMade to stick
Christopher WittReal Leaders don’t do PowerPoint
Tim Calkins – How to wash a chicken

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Tzonka Bouklieva, VP Ed. Calgary PaceSetters Club, shares her recommendations:

Year of Yes – Shonda Rhimes
Start with Why – Simon Sinek
On my own two feet – Amy Purdy
Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor Frankl
Atomic Habits – James Clear
The Charisma Myth – Olivia Fox Cabane
Eight Dates – John and Julie Gottman

Congratulations to Dan Kostka, Calgary PaceSetters Toastmasters Club on publishing his first book Escape to Slovakia: Five Journeys from the Ukrainian Border. Visit Dan’s website for more information. https://deepstancemedia.com/

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Alisen Dopf – President Calgary Pace Setters Toastmasters Club.
Her book recommendation is Deep Powder & Steep Rock: The Life of Mountain Guide Hans Gmoser 
Here is the official except on the book:
Hans Gmoser (1932–2006) was the most influential mountaineer in Canada of the last fifty years. Through innovation, hard work, perseverance and an appetite for adventure, Gmoser evolved from penniless immigrant to mountain guide for kings, queens and prime ministers. He also played a major role in creating what is now western Canada’s dynamic mountain adventure community.
Known primarily as the inventor of heli-skiing and the founder of Canadian Mountain Holidays (CMH), Gmoser also garnered recognition as a talented rock climber, tireless expedition leader, successful mountain guide, renowned filmmaker, community organizer and vibrant businessman.
Told from all aspects of his fascinating life and including some of Gmoser’s own words, Chic Scott weaves together a compelling story based on the diaries, expedition journals, film commentaries and personal correspondence of this charismatic and inspiring mountaineer.
Alisen hopes her book selection inspires people to learn about our mountain history, get a bit awed, and then inspire them to seek out their own adventures, whatever they may be.

————————–

Eva Sefcova Long-time member of the Calgary PaceSetters Toastmasters Club
Eva thinks this list of 10 books would be amazing for Toastmasters to read.
1. The 5-Second Rule by Mel Robbins
2. Emotional Freedom by Judith Orloff
3. The Gift by Dr. Edith Eva Eger
4. Atomic Habits by James Clear
5. Limitless by Jim Kwik
6. Effortless by Greg McKeown
7. Crucial Conversations by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny
8. Dare to Lead by Brene Brown
9. The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
10. Make it stick by Peter C Brown

—————————

Debbie Stearns, DTM – D42 Club Growth Director
Debbie’s list is a mix of self-help, biographies, essays, fiction and more
The End of Us
• The Start of Us
• Reminders of Him
• The Introverts Way
• The Power of Habit
• Get out of your own way
Let’s get Physical – How women discovered exercise and reshaped the world
Stop Apologizing
• Four Agreements
• Book of Boundaries
• Built through Courage
• Didn’t see that coming
Prince Harry – Spare
• Anxious People
• Unfu*k Yourself
• Talking as fast as I can
• Regretting You
• Ugly Love
• Happy Now
• Fighting Infertility
• November 9

Toastmasters International Magazine published an article in 2018 with a list of books on the topic of persuasion. Find the article HERE 

Thank you to Paul Dixon, SAA Calgary Pace Setters Toastmasters Club for the idea of publishing book recommendations for Toastmasters members. If you would like to share your book suggestions, please send them to Twila Tayfel, D42 District Dispatch Editor.

Happy Reading!

Who doesn’t like to receive recognition for a task well done? In Toastmasters, excellence is rewarded in the form of several awards.

Club Meeting Recognition 

  • There are ribbons that you can award at your club meeting for Best Speaker, Best Evaluator, Best Table Topics, Most Improved and Ice Breaker Speech. These ribbons can be purchased at Toastmasters International SHOP (note the store is unavailable until May 8, 2022)
  • Certificates can be awarded to those members who complete their Pathways levels

District Recognition

The Past President is head of the club nomination committee for Of the Year Awards

Of the Year Awards are awarded to those Toastmasters who go above and beyond. Here are the awards:

  • Rookie of the Year:  A Rookie is defined as “Any member in good standing of District 42 who joins a Toastmasters club at any time during the 18 months prior to June 30 of the year for which the award is being given.” See the nomination criteria HERE.
  • Toastmaster of the Year: A club member who excels at all aspects of being a Toastmaster; see the nomination criteria HERE.
  • President of the Year: The immediate Past District Director will contact the incoming club president to complete the nomination form. Click HERE for details on how the President of the Year is chosen.
  • PR Program of the Year recognizes a Vice President of Public Relations who has done an outstanding job of promoting their club; see the nomination criteria HERE.
  • Area Director of the Year: see the nomination criteria HERE. 
  • Division Director of the Year: see the nomination criteria HERE

Hints for writing nominations:

If you are going to be doing the nominations for your club, here are some helpful tips to make your nominations stand out:

Make sure to submit your club nominations to your Area Director before July 15th.

Congratulations to all those who will be nominees for Of the Year Awards to be presented in the fall of 2022.

Twila Tayfel,
District 42 Dispatch Editor

Did You Know: Volunteering

If you hear the word volunteer, do you visualize people helping out at food banks, picking up garbage or playing with animals at an animal shelter? Did you know that volunteering is so much more than that? Volunteering is anything done willingly without financial reward; volunteering is at the heart of every Toastmasters meeting.

Every day, members of Toastmasters agree to help other people develop their speaking and leadership skills. Members serve as mentors, encouragers and evaluators and give their time and talents to inspire and motivate people to learn and grow. Being a Toastmaster is not only about improving your skills and abilities, it involves sharing with others tips, tricks and knowledge to help them improve.

Did you know that volunteering has physical, mental, and social health benefits? Scientists from places like the World Health Organization, Ghent University (in Belgium) and Stanford University (in California) are discovering that spending time volunteering can bring health advantages ranging from having a built-in support system, lowering blood pressure, building connections with others and more. This article from the Toastmasters magazine provides more details 
Did you know that lack of time and not knowing how to volunteer are the main reasons sighted by people who do not volunteer? On the flip side, the main reason people volunteer is to contribute to the community.

Did you know that the main reason people stop volunteering is not lack of time but lack of appreciation and recognition for what they do?  To keep volunteers, make sure to thank them for their efforts.

My home club, the Calgary Pace Setters Toastmasters Club, posts thank you’s on social media acknowledging club members that have gone above and beyond. We also recognize the efforts of club members by giving ribbons and certificates for doing the hard work of completing speeches, taking on meeting roles and participating in meetings as Table Topics speakers. These ribbons and certificates are available from Toastmasters International.

Did you know that District 42 has the Of the Year Awards? These awards recognize our members who demonstrate the values of Integrity, Respect, Service and Excellence. They give freely of their time and talent to ensure that every Toastmaster has a quality club experience and wants to remain part of the organization. You can find more details about the awards on the District website HERE 

Did you know there are many creative ways you can show appreciation for your club volunteers? If you need some suggestions, have a look HERE

In appreciation for the work of all Toastmasters,

Twila Tayfel
District 42 Co-Dispatch Editor
Calgary Pace Setters Toastmasters Club, VP Public Relations

Did You Know…. The Successful Club Series

Last month I highlighted a resource from Toastmasters International called The Better Speaker Series. This month I would like to highlight the companion resource, The Successful Club Series.

The Successful Club Series can be downloaded as a complete set from the Toastmasters International website HERE.

Individual Manuals/documents can be found by searching The Successful Club Series on the Resources Page

The Successful Club Series is an ideal resource for all clubs. There is a myriad of topics that can be presented as education sessions led by the executive or an experienced Toastmaster.

Keeping the Commitment is an excellent resource to revisit throughout the year as it reaffirms what Toastmasters are called to do and it aligns with our core values of Integrity, Respect, Service and Excellence.

Is your club looking to start a mentorship program or revamp your mentorship program? Look no further than the Mentoring PowerPoint or PDF to get your program off the ground. There are also forms and a document about managing your club’s mentorship program.

If your club has new members eager to learn and take on new roles, an education session on Meeting Roles might be in order.

For those looking to conduct a Moments of Truth session with your club, you will find what you are looking for in the Successful Club Series

Toastmasters International has many resources that can help individual members as well as clubs reach their goals. I encourage you to check out the Resource Library, Video Library and podcasts that are available to all Toastmasters.

Happy perusing.

Twila Tayfel
District 42 Dispatch Co-Editor

Did you know that

Toastmasters International has a series of resources titled “The Better Speaker Series”.
There are 10 topics in the series.

The topics in the Better Speaker Series are:
  • Controlling Your Fear
  • Selecting Your Topic
  • Organizing Your Speech
  • Creating an Introduction
  • Beginning Your Speech
  • Concluding Your Speech
  • Know Your Audience
  • Preparation and Practice
  • Using Body Language
  • Impromptu Speaking (this is a beneficial manual for a first-time Table Topics Master that has to explain Table Topics and give tips to would-be Table Topics participants)  

The manuals are available for downloading on the Toastmasters International Website (either individually or as a complete set)

The series can be downloaded and read as a guide to help you become a better speaker or the series can be presented as 10–15-minute educational sessions to all club members.

Presenting an educational session can count as a Pathways Project (look at the projects in your path and determine where an educational session could fit if this type of speech interests you) *

*Please note that the Better Speaker Series was published prior to the Pathways Educational Program and references the previous Educational Program. Any information describing/detailing the previous educational program is not relevant. Should you have any questions regarding the material in the Better Speaker Series program, contact your club’s VP of Education.

Did You Know: Grammarian and Ah-Counter Roles

Many people join Toastmasters because they want to improve their communication skills. When asked to be more specific, these people often say they would like to reduce their usage of crutch words and improve their use of language. Toastmasters has two meeting roles that can help with those goals – the grammarian and the ah-counter.  These roles are important because they help us become aware of our usage of language during prepared speeches and impromptu speaking. What is the difference between these roles?

Ah-Counter

Let’s start with the ah-counter role. The ah-counter’s role is to listen for any crutch or filler words that distract or take away from a person’s speech. The words and sounds include “um”, “ah”, “so”, “you know”, “like” and “and”. Being aware of crutch/filler words we use in our speeches can help us become more effective communicators. In my home club, the Calgary Pace Setters, we have the incentive to improve and reduce our crutch words – the green monkey. Each week, the person with the most crutch words gets the green monkey. The idea is to get the “monkey off your back” and use fewer filler words when speaking at our next meeting. If crutch words are something you struggle with, I suggest reading the following articles:

The Grammarian

What is the role of the grammarian? The grammarian helps us build our vocabulary by providing a word of the day. The word of the day should relate to the theme of the meeting and all members should be encouraged to use the word whenever possible throughout the meeting. A grammarian will also use their listening skills to pick out engaging and creative phrases spoken by participants as well as to catch any improper usage of the English language (e.g. grammatical mistakes, redundant words/phrases, run-on sentences and so on). During the evaluation portion of the meeting, a report will be provided. To help you with the role of the grammarian, have a look at the Calgary Pace Setters website The GRAMMARIAN Role

For inspiration for the word of the day, visit https://wordsmith.org/

My challenge for all Toastmasters in the month of February is to be mindful of your crutch words, use interesting vocabulary words and take on the roles of ah-counter and grammarian should the opportunity arise.

Twila Tayfel
VP Public Relations Calgary PaceSetters Club
Co-editor District 42 Monthly Dispatch Newsletter

Did You Know: New Year’s Edition

January 1st is the start of the calendar year in the Gregorian or New Style calendar which first became used in 1582 AD when it was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII.

The tradition of making New Year’s resolutions dates back about 4,000 years. The ancient Babylonians celebrated a 12-day festival known as Akitu. During this festival, the Babylonians crowned a new king or reaffirmed their loyalty to the reigning king. They also made promises to the gods to return objects they had borrowed and to pay their debts. Those who kept their promises were bestowed favours by the gods while those who did not keep their word would fall out of the gods’ favour (a place no Babylonian wanted to be)

Today, most New Year’s celebrations and resolutions are mostly secular practices. Instead of making promises to gods, most people make resolutions only to themselves. These usually centre on self-improvement of various types According to a recent survey conducted by Time2Play, 61.9% of respondents said they think resolutions are helpful. However, less than 30% of respondents said they kept the resolution they made at the beginning of 2022.

If you want to make sure your resolution comes true, you need to make a plan. Some advice I received from an acquittance is that a goal or a resolution is only a wish unless you have a plan.

One method that may prove useless for making a plan to keep your New Year’s goals is the SMART method. SMART stands for:

  • Specific: What are you trying to accomplish?
  • Measurable: How can you tell if you reach your goal?
  • Achievable: While you want your goal to be challenging, it should not be impossible or cause you to want to give up. If reaching your goal would cause you to be miserable or have to give up things you enjoy doing, perhaps it is best to reconsider certain aspects of the goal or the plan.
  • Relevant: Think about the why of your goal. Is reaching this goal important to you for several reasons? If you can pinpoint why you want to achieve this milestone, it is likely an appropriate goal.
  • Time-bound: Goals can be short-term or long-term. The difference between this is usually the amount of time it will take to reach the goal. Setting a time frame to reach your goal can be the incentive you need to make sure you don’t make excuses and put the work in to achieve your goal.

Let’s look at a SMART goal in terms of Toastmasters. I personally want to finish Level 2 in my Presentation Mastery path by April.

  • Specific: My goal is to finish Level 2 in my Presentation Mastery pathway.
  • Measurable: I can measure my progress by how many projects I complete between now and April. I can sign up in my club’s Turbobase scheduler to keep myself accountable.
  • Achievable: This goal fits my lifestyle. I would not have to make significant changes to my daily routine in order to reach the goal. I can set aside time to complete 1 project per month and do it to the best of my ability.
  • Relevant: My goal is relevant because it will help me to continue to refine my public speaking skills and get comfortable in delivering speeches of all types. My goal is also relevant because my achievement will help my club get closer to our goal of 10 DCP points.
  • Time-bound: I have set the time frame for the completion of my goal for April. This will allow me the ability to work on one project per month and knowing I have a set time for completion will make sure I am accountable.

I wish all my fellow Toastmasters and their families and happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year. May 2023 be a successful year for you all no matter what your goals and aspirations are.

Twila Tayfel
VP Public Relations Calgary PaceSetters Club
Co-editor District 42 Monthly Dispatch Newsletter

Navigating Toastmasters International’s website re-design

Did you know that Toastmasters International recently revamped its website?

  • After a member logs in, they will be greeted with a question asking them “Where can we take you today?”
  • Your name, how long you have been a member and your membership number will all be visible to you
  • You will then have several options available to select to take you where you need to go on the Toastmasters International website
  • My suggestion: Check your profile first. The option to select My Profile will be available to you at the top of the screen in yellow. Click on the little arrow beside your name and you should get My Home, My Profile, and Logout. Click on My Profile.
  • After clicking My Profile, you will be brought to a page with several choices. Make sure your personal information is up to date.
  • There is one category I would like to highlight the importance of. This is the My Privacy and Consents tab. Clicking on this tab will allow you to update your privacy settings as well as give consent/withdraw consent for communications and data gathering from Toastmasters International.
  • Choosing to update your privacy and consent will bring up the following choices:
    • Email: There will be a blurb explaining what emails will come to your inbox from Toastmasters International. You can select Yes or No.
    • Mail: There will be a blurb explaining what hard copy mail will come to your mailbox from Toastmasters International. You can select Yes or No.
    • Third Party: There will be a blurb explaining Toastmasters International’s Third-Party Distributors and if you consent to receive information from these Third Parties. You can select Yes or No.
    • Phone: There will be a blurb asking if you would like to receive phone calls from Toastmasters International with information tailored to your needs. You can select Yes or No.
    • Public Reports: There will be a blurb explaining that Toastmasters International creates reports for various purposes and uses members’ names on these reports. You do have the option to remain anonymous on these reports. If you give consent to have your name published/continue to be published, select Yes. If you do not want your name on these public reports, select No. 

  • There is a Need Help dialogue box available on the Toastmasters International website if you need assistance.

  • You can read more about Toastmasters International’s privacy policy HERE.

Remember, it is your responsibility to make sure your profile information and your privacy and consent settings are where you want them to be set.

  • That the fear of public speaking is called Glossophobia?
  • That the American National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 73% of Americans suffer from public speaking anxiety to some degree.
  • That some of the signs and symptoms of public speaking anxiety include
    • shaking
    • sweating
    • butterflies in the stomach
    • dry mouth
    • rapid heartbeat
    • squeaky voice
  • That there are ways to overcome public speaking anxiety and succeed?
  • That the most common tip for overcoming the fear of public speaking is to join a group where you can practice in a safe and supportive environment.
  • That other common tips for overcoming glossophobia arE
    • be well prepared (know your material so well that you don’t need to   
    • refer to notes/cue cards that you have up on the podium with you)
    • focus on your material, not the audience’s behaviour
    • make eye contact with friendly faces in the audience
    • set realistic expectations
    • control what you can control and ignore/forget what you cannot control
    • visualize yourself and think positive thoughts
  • Toastmasters International published an article 90 Tips for Toastmasters for its 90th Anniversary. Many of the tips in the article are helpful for overcoming the fear of public speaking.
  • The sunniest place in District 42 is Swift Current, Saskatchewan with an average of 324 days of sunshine a year.
  • It takes sunlight just over 8 minutes to reach Earth.
  • Sunlight is strongest around the time of the summer solstice (June 21st) and weakest around the winter solstice (December 21st).
  • The Sun is actually white. We see it as yellow because of the Earth’s atmosphere.
  • The Sun rotates in the opposite direction to Earth, from west to east.
  • The Sun travels at a speed of 136 mi / 220 km per second through space.
  • The Eiffel Tower actually grows in the heat of the summer. Due to the iron expansion, the tower grows about 6 inches every summer.
  • A June fun fact is that the month of June is named after the Roman goddess Juno.
  • The “dog days of summer” refer to the dates from July 3rd to August 11th. They are named so after Sirius the Dog Star. This star is located in the constellation of Canis Major.
  • June is Effective Communications Month
  • Enjoy summer and make sure to get out in the sunshine for your mental, physical and emotional well-being!
  • Want to continue your Toastmasters journey in the summer? Check out the list of Sunshine Clubs HERE

Twila Tayfel,
District 42 Dispatch Editor

Facts

  • The World Championship of Public Speaking began in 1938
  • The first winner was Henry Wiens of Reedley, California
  • In 1979, Dirk Caldwell of Calgary, became the first winner from what is now District 42
  • The first female to win was Evelyn Jane Burgay who took the title in 1977
  • The International Speech Contest must be conducted in English only
  • The International Speech Contest starts at the club level
  • From the club, contestants will advance to Area, Division and District levels before competing at Regionals
  • Two winners from each Regional-level contest will move on to the semi-finals
  • Eight finalists will be chosen from the semi-finals to compete in the International Speech Contest and have the opportunity to be
  •  crowned World Champion of Public Speaking
  • Every finalist must present an entirely new and different speech than the one given during that year’s semifinal speech contest
  • Speeches are to be between 5-7 minutes long
  • For those who would like to attend the International Convention, please visit this website for more details https://www.toastmasters.org/events/2022-international-convention

Twila Tayfel,
District 42 Dispatch Editor

Club officer elections will take place in each club during the month of May.
Any member of Toastmasters in good standing can run for a Club Officer position at the Club level.
The following positions comprise a Club Executive Team: President, Past-President (the previous year’s President), Vice-President Education, Vice-President Public Relations, Vice-President Membership, Sergeant-At-Arms, Treasurer, and Secretary.
The length of a Club Officer term is one Toastmaster year which runs from July 1st-June 30th.
Club officers are expected to attend two training sessions in a Toastmaster year: one session in the summer/fall (July-September) and one session in the winter (December-February)
A club earns Distinguished Club points if its updated Club Officer list is submitted to Toastmasters International on time (usually after the club elections).

  • The President is the “face” of the club. He or she will work with the team to complete the Distinguished Club Plan and set the direction for the Toastmasters year. The President presides over club executive meetings and attends meetings at the Area Level.
  • The Past-President is there to offer guidance and support for the current President. He or she will head up the committees for the Club Officer Elections and Of the Year Awards.
  • The Vice-President Education is responsible for helping members to achieve their Toastmasters goals. He or she will set the agenda for club meetings and encourage members to take on various roles at meetings. The VP Education will support members in completing their Pathways projects and assign a mentor to new club members. This role also confirms the completion of Pathways levels on the Toastmasters International website.
  • The Vice-President Membership is the club officer who helps ensure that members’ needs are met so that members remain members. The VP Membership welcomes guests and encourages guests to become members. He or she may prepare a welcome package for guests and a Welcome to the Club package for new members. They are an integral part of the Club Officer team.
  • The Vice-President of Public Relations is the team’s promoter. The person taking on this role will navigate the world of social media, websites and other tools to get the news out about your club. He or she may also produce newsletters for club members and write about your club for local publications. To be successful in this role requires keeping information about your club up to date and creating memorable and relevant content for club members and the community at large who may become members.
  • The Secretary’s role looks different depending on the makeup of the club. In general, the secretary takes notes during Club Officer and regular club meetings and handles club correspondence. Other duties might include keeping the club constitution & bylaws,  maintaining general club correspondence and performing the role of Pathways Base Camp Manager for the Club.
  • The Treasurer handles all of the club’s finances and ensures that the club and all of its members are in good standing. Some of those duties are preparing an annual budget, notifying each club member of dues payable, collecting dues and fees, issuing checks for dues and other expenses, paying bills promptly, keeping full and accurate records and presenting monthly financial reports.
  • The Sergeant-At-Arms role is integral role for the successful functioning of a club. Their role is to prepare the meeting space whether that be a physical location or a zoom room. He or she makes sure that all items needed by the members for a meeting are prepared. At a meeting, the Sergeant-At-Arms will open the meeting and give any housekeeping tips/information to those in attendance. They are also responsible for cleaning up at the end of a meeting.

If you are thinking of running for a position this spring, talk to the current Executive about their roles and ask any questions you may have.

Serving as a Club Officer is an excellent way to challenge yourself and reach some of your Toastmasters Leadership roles.

Twila Tayfel,
D42 Dispatch Editor

Did you know that over 350,000 people around the world have seen the value of Toastmasters?

Did you know that there are Toastmasters clubs in 143 countries?

Did you know that the 4 core values of Toastmasters are IntegrityRespectService and Excellence?

Did you know that each Toastmaster makes a PROMISE? This promise means that you will attend club meetings regularly, prepare for meeting assignments, help maintain a positive club environment and uphold honesty and integrity during the conduct of all Toastmasters activities.

Did you know that RESPECT is essential to the running of a Toastmasters club? At Toastmasters, we can demonstrate respect by giving our full attention to the people at our meetings, participating in club activities, and getting to know our club members.

Did you know that in District 42, over 2 million people contribute volunteer hours to organizations including Toastmasters?

Did you know that SERVICE in Toastmasters can take many different forms? You can serve as your club executive, be a club coach or sponsor, take on roles at contests, and assist at training sessions among other things. Looking to get out of your comfort zone? Check out District 42 opportunities HERE

Did you know that EXCELLENCE is something we strive for as Toastmasters? Here are some Tips and Tools for excellence from our Toastmasters colleagues in Europe.

Twila Tayfel,
District 42 Dispatch Editor

When you join Toastmasters, you will be joining an organization with a structure that is meant to help you get the most out of your Toastmasters experience. Open Structure Map to see the information below laid out in chart form.

TM – Toastmasters

TI – Toastmasters International 

D42 – District 42  (District 42 is the district to which clubs from Southern Alberta and Southern Saskatchewan belong.)

Club – What you are a member of

Home Club – The main club that you are a member of

Area– A group of clubs makes up an area

Area Director – A person who is the link between clubs and the division

Division – A group of areas makes up a division

Division Director – A person who is the link between the division and the district

District Executive Committee – There are several members who hold positions on District Committees. See the list of all committees in District 42

The District Trio – The three main people who look after District 42

Club Growth Director – A member of the district trio who helps clubs recruit and retain members

PQD-Program Quality Director – a member of the district trio who is responsible for all aspects of education and training within the district

District Director – A member of the district trio who oversees all aspects of the Toastmasters experience for clubs and Toastmasters in District 42

Region – A group of districts makes up a region; District 42 is in Region 4

Region Advisor –  A Toastmaster who is the link between the Board of Directors and the Region

Board of Directors – A group of elected Toastmasters from all the regions around the world who are the link between their Region and World Headquarters

Twila Tayfel,
District 42 Dispatch Editor

Tuesdays have never been the same since Toastmasters came into my life in the spring of 2013. For almost ten years, I have been attending meetings with the Calgary PaceSetters Toastmasters Club.
At my first meeting, I was warmly welcomed and invited to sit with some club executive members. I was also asked to participate in Table Topics said yes and was surprised when I took home the Best Table Topics speaker ribbon at the end of the night. Due to my positive experience, I became a member almost immediately.

Fast forward to October 2022. I have been a PaceSetter for nearly 10 years and in that time, I have held positions on our club executive and completed many projects from both manual programs and Pathways. In addition, I have worked on the District 42 Dispatch newsletter with Vesna Ivkovic.

My goal in Toastmasters is to eventually earn a DTM which will require excellent time-management and organizational skills as well as a commitment to service and excellence. With the support and guidance of those in my club and other levels of Toastmasters, I know that my goal can be achieved.

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