talking points for nature guides
index to talking points for nature guides
For new guides
updated Apr 2020

Worried about content?

  • Focus on die-die-sure-can see animals or plants: Choose 5 of such organisms that YOU find interesting and that you might think ordinary people would find interesting too.
  • Develop a story script for each of these things: Say at most 3 facts about them. One fact is actually enough.
  • Practice your script on your friends or more experienced guides. See if they find it interesting enough. Ask them for comments, improvements, ideas.
  • You can bring 'cheat sheets' and refer to your notes quickly. It's OK.
  • What makes a good story? more details
    • FUN: Short (1 minute), enjoyable to listen to, understandable, interactive
    • Accurate
    • Has a message

Don't know anything about the find?

  • It's OK to say I don't know
  • No information is better than wrong information
  • Bring a guidebook with you and refer to it.
  • Ripped from Sean Yap's blog post: Technology! Use it! A smartphone can be very useful. Hear a bird call but cannot see it, and don't have a guidebook on hand? Consult Google Images! Trying to describe certain behaviour that cannot be observed at the moment? All hail YouTube! Never try to force a hiding animal out, or force an organism to exhibit certain behaviour. Use a guidebook or the internet to help illustrate your point.

Can't find interesting things?

  • Involve the visitors, they will be glad to help you find things.
  • Help one another, share your finds.
  • Try not to talk about things which are NOT there. If you do this too often, visitors will get the impression they didn't actually see anything special.
  • Highlight what you do see. "Wow, this is the first time I've seen so many flowers on this tree!"
  • Get to know your site: come for the recce and training sessions. Go to the site on your own to learn more about it. Read up about it, ask more experienced guides. Go for talks about your site and the organisms found on your site.

Don't be a bad guide. Be a good guide instead.

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