Author Topic: I really don't get the speech contest...  (Read 5964 times)

Offline Jotham

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #30 on: November 02, 2012, 09:12:39 PM »
ok. one more thing. 5000 yen bill or 1000? 1000 is correct as it was on the old 5000 and on the current 100 but do we keep to script or not?
Wouldn't it be nice, to get on with my neighbours!

Offline Professor Bonerpants

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #31 on: November 05, 2012, 01:03:59 PM »
First of all this whole recitation vs speech thing is moot since both JHS and HS kids are just reciting pre-written speeches.

Also, judging is subjective (which we all know). 
Most of the top JHS kids in these contests achieve a comparable pronunciation level and are looking for something to give them that edge ---gestures. 

This mentality started to take off a few years ago when one particular student who clearly did not have the best pronunciation, stood out by acting like a clown and won.  It became alarmingly clear that the Japanese judges were into this (despite the protests of ALT's). 

The point is, everyone focuses on pronunciation/intonation etc to varying degrees of success, so if that's all you're doing then you're doing the minimum of what everyone is expected.  I am not an advocate of gestures, but I'm just saying that if you lack any, you will be left behind. 

The key should be to connect with the audience and gestures seems like a good shortcut to do this.  Unfortunately, after practicing a hundred times, the speech lacks any real feeling and even the gestures are robotic...

If you can get your student to have confidence and actually understand what he/she is saying then the gestures will come naturally...

Offline Khaleesi

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #32 on: November 05, 2012, 02:18:59 PM »
hmmm gestures will NOT come naturally.  More often than not the gestures my students at the HS level excelled in were carefully studied and practiced micromovements of the arms and head.

None of this melodramatic placement of hand upon chest for "my".  It's more of a slight indication of oneself with the hand, paired with a tilt of the head and stronger intonation of "my".

Practiced over a month, it then comes naturally.
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Offline Karurosu

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #33 on: November 05, 2012, 02:48:53 PM »
My student is blind, so trying to teach him gestures feels completely ridiculous and contrived. He was criticised in one contest for using no gestures, which is absurd, but for the next contest we figured we'd "play the game" and include one action. Though he did very well, it was clearly a mistake and felt quite wrong. I'd never do it again to be honest, at least not with that student. He's an absolute genius though and can carry a great deal of expression in his voice alone, so that's where he gets his "edge". I guess gestures aren't that important when you're lucky enough to be working with a child prodigy. So yeah, this is probably relevant to nobody, but that's my experience.

Offline OxO

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #34 on: November 05, 2012, 03:30:29 PM »
Screw gestures. Mine aren't going to be doing too much and should I end up grading a recitation contest I would mark down kids for them...unless they go into full on mega Hitler mode. Then its +10.
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Offline Jotham

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #35 on: November 05, 2012, 03:35:44 PM »
If you can get your student to have confidence and actually understand what he/she is saying then the gestures will come naturally...

Easier said than done.
Some of my students are really shy so to try and get them to "say it louder!" is a real ball ache. I think it starts with robotic gestures that will eventually become more natural (or at least look natural).

Another point. For the JHS recitation, one of my students has had her extra bit added to the bottom of her 5 lakes speech checked but there's a grammatical error that i've spotted. Which is better - to leave the error or change it. If she changes it when doing the speech will she  get marked down because she hasn't recited whats on the paper?
Wouldn't it be nice, to get on with my neighbours!

Offline Professor Bonerpants

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #36 on: November 06, 2012, 09:35:57 AM »
If you can get your student to have confidence and actually understand what he/she is saying then the gestures will come naturally...

Easier said than done.
Some of my students are really shy so to try and get them to "say it louder!" is a real ball ache. I think it starts with robotic gestures that will eventually become more natural (or at least look natural).

Another point. For the JHS recitation, one of my students has had her extra bit added to the bottom of her 5 lakes speech checked but there's a grammatical error that i've spotted. Which is better - to leave the error or change it. If she changes it when doing the speech will she  get marked down because she hasn't recited whats on the paper?
Another point of worry is that kids do not know what they are really getting into. 
They often have the mentality that if they memorize their script they are awesome.  Sure that is more than any of their classmates have done, but at the actual contest that is the mimimum requirement.  This doesn't fully register until they experience that yes, everybody else there knows the script too.
The best preparation you can do is to have them deliver their speech in front of their homeroom class one morning.  This will scare them straight and help them get serious pretty quick.

As for defending my gestures comment ---this is how my kids operate.  Tell them they need to help sell the story.  Have them give their own input on what feels right to them and go from there.

And if you are being marked on a speech that you submitted, do not change anything, even if there are awkward moments in grammar ---hell, Paul Rusch and Sugihara are full of them.  Deviating from the script is the easiest way to lose.

Offline vankuzco

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Re: I really don't get the speech contest...
« Reply #37 on: November 13, 2012, 01:49:00 PM »
Hi,

As i teach Eikaiwa in a juku i don't get to know all the ins and outs of what goes in at the schools, and this speech contest is doing my head in!
My boss went to the first round and videoed most of the speeches and we had a look (and a bit of a laugh) at the speeches and compared them. I looked at the mark scheme but still didn't really understand why the winners won compared to others.
What do the judges really look for?
How important is the intonation of a work? i.e. Lake Kawaguchi is the most popular lake. or Lake Kawaguchi is the most popular lake.
How many times do you need to grab your jacket pulling silly faces and shouting out to win the competition?
If they said it with a British accent would that be wrong?
I saw students saying their Ls and Rs, Bs and Vs, and THs with cringe worthy pronunciation but got high marks.

Over all it's really difficult to advise my students if i don't know what the judges want. Also, how much of a say to the gaijin judges have compared to the Japanese? What are the Japanese judges looking for?

Any advice?

Oh dang Jotham. I didn't see this post at all or I would have had all your answers. I'm matt and I think we met at the Tsuru recitation contest.

Its always been all ALT judges.

and the emphasis is on "most" in "most popular".

I'm not a fan of big gestures. The biggest gesture should be your face.
matt from tsuru.  until i can think of something witty.