Ever since I can remember I have had a fear of speaking in public. When I know a teacher picks on students to answer a question or read out loud, my heart starts racing really fast and loud, I get all clammy and cold. I try to calm my self with breathing techniques, but nothing seems to help. I can spend the whole class worrying about being picked that I end up not learning anything in the class because I'm too focused on trying to calm myself.
Is there something I can do, or somewhere I can go for help?
This is far more common than you might realize, and the clue here is that it really has more to do with a phobia than it does the fear of getting an answer wrong.
There are performance anxiety medications, beta blockers, that can be used to calm the heart racing and jitters, if you know you are going to be speaking in front of a group, but given that you are talking about more spontaneous situations, this is something that is most amenable to therapy techniques used for phobias and fear management.
It can also help to let your instructors know that you do have public speaking anxiety that you are working to overcome, and many instructors will work with you to arrange times for you to speak aloud, rather than having it be a surprise so you do not have to be so focused on whether or not you'll be called on.
It is a crucial skill to develop during your education, so it is not something to avoid in the classroom. Work with a therapist to develop coping strategies that will assist in reducing your physical response to the fear.