平成23弁論大会 – Speech Contest 2011

Every year the city hosts speech and recitation contests for the middle school students.  This is open to anyone, but there aren’t generally more than just a couple from each school.  There is first a district competition, and those that place in the top two spots for each contest will go on to the citywide contest.  Last year I had one of my two speech entrants make it to the next level (Miyaki Asuka), which was great.  This year, Kubo Narisa would be giving it a go, though in the recitation category.  The two events are basically the same, though length and expected degree of characterization varies between the two categories.  I was happy to embrace a shorter speech.  Narisa is probably the best English student among the 2nd year students, and has a good attitude.  So, after school most days we would practice for about a half hour.  This generally consisted of working to maker her intonation fluctuations and accent sound as natural as possible.  Sometimes it can be hard to to explain things, there being a language gap and advice needing to be rather technical.  We could usually make things works though.

On the day of the contest, I got there and we did some last minute practice.  She was the very first person to go which I think can be a bit nerving.  It’s also a tough spot from a judging standpoint.  I was then also tasked with sitting there for a very long time, with nothing to look forward to as I waited for it to wrap up.  Fast forward about 2 hours, realize there is more to go, and then jump ahead some more.  Finally, we arrive at the judgment.  Narisa didn’t have to pause and think or anything, but I would agree with the judges that she wasn’t a champion that time.  I’m sure she will try again next year, so I’ll be rooting for her then.

Picture time

This was her speech, which I recorded at the School Culture Festival

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