Biodiversity popular speech topic
You’d be mistaken for thinking you were on the film set of the Dr Seuss movie Lomax a few weeks ago at Napier’s National Aquarium of New Zealand when Taea Southwick from Bledsoe School won the Hillmac Electrical Junior Speech Contest.
Her prop was her lovingly crafted truffula tree, topped with a bright shaggy red tuft, says confidence coach Anna Coleman. Her speech was entitled ‘Unless we Look After our Biodiversity…’.
Ten students from Nu¯ haka to Havelock North, spoke on Biodiversity in my Backyard. After weeks of planning, structuring and practising they were chosen to represent their schools, and the topic proved popular.
“The teachers loved the topic as much as the students,” says Nelson Park senior teacher Tracy Mudd.
“I learnt so much from the whole process and about biodiversity. We look forward to next year’s challenge.”
Caleb Macklow, from Mahora School, was second with his speech, Human Pollution in the Sea. Nu¯ haka School contestant Wyntah Green Thom has been juggling speechmaking with chess and is now in the winning team that will represent Hawke’s Bay in the National Chess Tournament. Wyntah says she has enjoyed writing and sharing her story for the Hillmac Speech competition. Speech making and delivering are new to her and she was both nervous and excited about accepting the challenge.
Her speech, The Good, the Bad and the Pocket Money, on the damage white butterflies can do, was tied for third place with Quaylo Olsen from Frimley School, Hastings, whose speech was called Biodiversity.
The judge was Josephine Carpenter, a Speech New Zealand examiner and former director of performing arts at Woodford House. She acknowledged the 10 contestants for their courage in speaking, their use of te reo and ability to tell stories and anecdotes, and their deep understanding of biodiversity and the need to protect it.
“It’s a talk, it needs to be talked out, to keep its freshness, not written out word for word. Stand up tall and speak your truth,” Josephine said.
Chief sponsor and CEO of Hillmac Electrical Mike Hill said he had found public speaking challenging and developing confident communicators Public speaking skills were important in the workplace. Other contestants were Saraid Murphy, Nelson Park in Napier, Sarah Hansen, Greenmeadows School, Rosie Ormond from Sherenden and Districts School, Isabella McKeefry from Te Mata School, Ruby Haworth from Reignier School and Noah Rogers from Parkvale School.
Taea Southwick from Bledsoe school in Taradale won the Hillmac Electrical Junior Speech Contest.