Voice coach and Tik Tok superstar Sally Prosser is back again with an easy, 3-step, 1-minute voice warm up for teachers!
Do it in your car, your classroom or the staffroom to save your voice in the winter months and beyond!
Looking for tips for looking after your voice? Listen to out other episode with Sally: Love Teaching? Love Your Voice!
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Voice Warm-Ups for Teachers: Full Episode Transcript
Bron:What comes to mind when you hear the term warmups? Many of us begin each lesson with a warm up for our students. We prepare their brains and quickly get them into gear, to revise prior learning and prepare for new learning. Teachers’ voices need warm ups, too. Whether you choose to do them during the drive to school or in your classroom before the bell goes, these babies are going to be a lifesaver for you. I’m joined by vocal coach, Sally Prosser, who’s going to take us through some simple voice warmups that teachers can use daily.
Bron: I’m really looking forward to this because I think that we need something that we can apply that’s really easy to do. So what, what’s the structure of this warmup?
The One-Minute Voice Warm Up Every Teacher Needs
Sally: It’s actually got three parts, this warm, I call body, breath and buzz. So it’s a three B warmup. Okay. It’s going to take me longer than a minute to explain it. But once you know all the parts it takes less than a minute to do.
Sally: And everybody’s got a minute.
The other thing I promote is doing voice warmups while you’re doing something else. So start in the shower, then do it while you’re driving to work. I mean, nobody really has time to say, okay, now I’m only going to do my voice warm ups. So if you just have some tricks for incorporating it into other parts of your day, then it’ll just become part of the routine.
Bron: Great. Yeah. Okay. So what do we start with?
Voice Warm Up Step One: Body
Sally: So we always start with body. So our whole body is our instrument and we need to set it up right before we play. We can’t just grab a guitar and hold it out here and try to strum it. We have to set it up, right? Yup. And I’ve mentioned some of these tricks in a previous episode, but I would say shoulders back where you Victoria’s Secret angel wings, ground your feet, like the legs of tree trunks, and a good way to get rid of tension is doing it.
I call it the shoulder drop. So what I want you to do is hold your shoulders up. Like you’re squeezing your head and then drop, pull them back, drop, pull them forward. Like you’re going to rip your shirt off. And then around, around, around, up and down, kind of like you’re warming up for swimming race. Mm Hmm. We often forget the physical part of voice. We don’t think of voice as something that is physical. But because the sound of the voice is so incredibly connected to the tension in the body, we inevitably have to include it. Right. Yeah. Definitely very important. Yeah. And I’m sure many of you can relate to that feeling of being tense even before you leave the house in the morning. And that’s going to show in your voice. So yeah. Shoulders, round and round. The next thing is breath.
Voice Warm Up Step Two: Breath
Sally: So we want to get the, the breath low and deep into the tummy and we want to go in for shorter than we exhale. Okay. Breathing is quite interesting; when we breathe in everything’s under pressure. All the organs are squished with all the air and when we breathe out, that’s the release. So breathing out is the nice part. Now the quick thing about breathing is breathing is also called inspiration. Oh, isn’t that nice. Every time you need some inspiration, just take a deep breath. Some inspiration. Okay. So we’re going to take a deep breath in low and deep and just exhale on the sound. Shh. So breathe in… and out…. shhhhhh.
So by using sh noise, we can feel the air coming out.
Then we’ll bring in the vocal cord vibrations, and we’re going to start off with Count Dracula. Count Dracula is ah, ah, ah, ah, and believe me, if you do that first thing in the morning, it’s not going to sound like that. It’s going to be, I kill you’ll feel it cracking, but that’s good. That’s what we want. We want to wake up the vocal cords. So we do. Ah, ah, ah, and then I like to warm, warm up the lips. So I can say the word warm up and I call this the braying horse. Okay. And you just sigh out while buzzing your lips like this.
Bron: Oh, I like it.
Sally: Yeah. It sounds a bit funny, but it relaxes the lips and gets the air out. Then you can progress to what I call the car, the phone and then the rollercoaster. And you’ll be good to go. That’s amazing.
So I know that sounded like a lot, but pretty much roll the shoulders, get the body right. Couple of deep breaths Count Dracula. And then the braying horse and just those simple exercises will get you ready to speak.
Bron: Very cool. I love it.
Bron: Fantastic. Sally is very accessible and easy to reach on her social media channels. So just reach out to her. I’ll pop the links in the episode description below, and you will know exactly where you can find Sally Prosser. Thanks for joining us. And thank you for giving us that amazing little warmup lesson that we can use every day. Thanks so much.