Speeches and po­ems de­liv­ered

Piako Post - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - LAWRENCE GULLERY

Have you ever won­dered what the best way is to grow pump­kins?

What about the in­ner­work­ings of fast cars, how clown fish sur­vive or how peo­ple man­age to find courage and brav­ery?

Or per­haps you’d al­ways dreamed of liv­ing in the Aus­tralian out­back but wanted to hear from some­one who had first-hand ex­pe­ri­ence.

Well, all of the above top­ics, and more, were cov­ered off at the an­nual Mor­rinsville district schools speech com­pe­ti­tion hosted by Ki­witahi School.

Prin­ci­pal Jor­dan Pal­frey ini­ti­ated the event about three years ago as a way to help young­sters de­velop their oral skills and build con­fi­dence speak­ing in front of an au­di­ence.

‘‘We’ve got seven schools here this year which is most schools in Mor­rinsville.

‘‘I used to do some­thing sim­i­lar at a pre­vi­ous area I worked at. There wasn’t a speech com­pe­ti­tion for Mor­rinsville schools so I thought it would be a cool idea.

‘‘And since then more schools have come on board.’’

About 80 pupils took part in this year’s com­pe­ti­tion. Each school held their own com­pe­ti­tion and the top two speak­ers went for­ward to the event at Ki­witahi.

The for­mat al­lowed for each age group to de­velop their speeches in their own time.

For the Years 1 and 2 chil­dren, the com­pe­ti­tion in­volved a poem recital, some­thing they would have learned over four or five weeks lead­ing into the event.

The Year 3 pupils pre­sented a ‘‘mini speech’’ on some­thing that was spe­cial to them.

‘‘What we do is give them a chance to do a speech without it be­ing a huge deal.

‘‘And the Years 4, 5 and 6s, they have an open speech topic be­tween two and three min­utes. They can choose whether the speeches are per­sua­sive or in­for­ma­tive.’’

Pal­frey said the feed­back from par­ents showed the young­sters were en­joy­ing the com­pe­ti­tion.

‘‘It’s just a great ex­pe­ri­ence for them to be able to speak in front of an au­di­ence.

‘‘Year after year, they are get­ting bet­ter at that.’’

Pal­frey said the district’s schools took turns at host­ing var­i­ous events through­out the year.

He was happy for Ki­witahi School to con­tinue host­ing the speech com­pe­ti­tion for the district.

‘‘We go out to all of the other events so we’d like to keep this one here, it’s our spe­cial event.’’

Olivia Car­ruthers, from David St School, had the au­di­ence lis­ten­ing to her speech called, Where Do I Find Courage? More pic­tures, page 27.

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