Every year around this time, Collingwood hosts an intraschool public speaking competition. Students have a choice of performing a dramatic monologue, persuasive speech, or humourous speech. By the time students are in grade twelve, they have become very familiar with the process as the competition begins when students are in grade one.
This year the English Department has decided to revamp the competition to reflect the national and international level competitions. Changes include the fact that an entire day will be dedicated to speeches instead of separate grade semi-finals and a school wide final. New types of speaking introduced for this year’s competition include Slam poetry, Interpretive Reading, and Famous Speeches. Students who are chosen to represent their English class will compete against peers in the same category.
With any event or initiative, there are pros and cons. For example, some students have been concerned that because of the new format they will be unable to watch as many speeches as in previous years. This year, people will be given the task of choosing three different categories they would like to watch as there will be three event sessions during the day long event.
Another concern that has circled the school scene is the fact that there are too many options! Though students often want choice in their learning, sometimes having too much of it can be difficult! That said, this choice is also an advantage, however, as there is something for everyone. In previous years, one had to make the choice between Persuasive or Humorous. This was very limiting for the creative minds at Collingwood, so this year’s new format will allow for more creativity and exploration. For students whose strengths aren’t in the persuasive and humorous categories, this new format will give them new opportunities to excel!
Whenever something new is introduced, it takes time to adapt. Although change is difficult, this new format will definitely be worth it. Speeches have been a tradition at Collingwood since its opening and this new format of speech day will only add on to the tradition! December 15th will truly be an exciting day!
By: Lisa Yang