helping to develop speaking and leadership skills 
Wokingham Speakers Club

News, March 2015 

Kids, fairies and even some Oscar Wilde 
Therese Edkins 
31st March 2015 

What an eclectic range of speech topics at our meeting. The first speaker was Nadir Ahmed with his speech "Kid's World" who took us back to his childhood, being one of 11 children. 
 
We were then treated by Graeme Hobbs with his speech "Good Morning Fairies" who told about his father's travel guide to the Isle of Man. 
 
Our third speaker was Christina MacGuire whose speech was an excerpt from Oscar Wilde's work "The Moral Millionaire", it was an interpretative reading project and one that delighted the audience. 
 
The final speaker was Ian Rodwell whose speech "A Report on three Benefits of Ageing" informed us about looking at the perspective of time in a new light. Best speaker was awarded to Ian Rodwell
After refreshments, our Table Topics Master, Sandra Rodwell invited members to give impromptu speeches about different modes of transport and budgets. We heard John Murphy take a tour de france as a social cyclist, Cherif travelled by car to Italy and Turkey, David Wilson took a bus tour around the rockies in Canada, Paola went to Japan by boat, Thomas White took a ballooon ride and finally Jo Thayer revisted South Africa and travelled first class by plane. 
 
The award of best table topic speaker went to John Murphy
 
Our team of evaluators gave helpful and constructive feedback to the speakers. We heard from Jose Maria, Cherif, Mell Sheppard and John Murphy. The award of best evaluator went to Mell Sheppard for her awesome analysis of Christina's reading from Oscar Wilde. 
 
The grammarian, Rachel Tinker gave her report on the use of language and the final report by the general evalutor, Jo Thayer commented on the evaluation team. 
 
In closing the meeting, Therese thanked all of the speakers, evalutors, grammarian and timer who all helped to make the meeting a success. 
 
International Speech and Evaluation Contest 
John Murphy 
3rd March 2015 
 
Tuesday 3rd March saw members of Wokingham Speakers Club gather for the annual International Speech and Evaluation contests. The evening was well attended with an encourage eight visitors joining a good number of members for the evening. 
 
The club chair, Amanda Bouch, opened proceedings by welcoming members and visitors in her usual ebullient way. As this evening was not a typical club meeting the host and contest chair, John Murphy, took a little time to explain the protocol for the evening. 
 
The chief judge, Therese Edkins gathered her band of contest officials to brief them on the rules for judging, timing and vote counting. 
 
The first half of the evening was taken up with the International Speech contest. Four speakers, Amanda Bouch, Steve Catchick, Marce Colucci and Asha Prasanna took to the stage to deliver a 5 to 7 minute speech. 
 
All the speakers gave energetic performances and the audience learnt valuable lessons about when communicating with others in an effective manner by how you present yourself and what your body language says about your message, how we could all demonstrate courage on a daily basis, the importance of affirming gratitude for the things we have and how searching for information on hair loss led to support of small businesses in the community. 
 
At the end of the speeches the judges had the unenviable task of scoring each speaker. 
 
Whilst the judges scores were being counted the audience was asked to voice a secret desire they had for a job or activity they'd always wanted to try. Suggestions included driving a HGV truck, publishing a novel, snowboarding, scuba diving, playing cricket for England (well somebody's got to!), speeding round a track on a high powered motorcycle and a whole host of other weird and wonderful ideas. 
 
A short refreshment break gave the audience an opportunity to mingle and for club members to answer any questions from our visitors. 
 
After the break the focus was on the Evaluation contest. For this contest we had five entries, Amanda Bouch, Steve Catchick, Marce Colucci, Deborah Broadhurst and Christina MacGuire
 
The guest speech to be evaluated was delivered by Tony Searby, a member of Maidenhead Speakers club. Tony's speech gripped the audience with a story that showed success can be achieved from even the most humble of beginnings. 
 
After Tony finished the evaluators were secreted to another room where they were given five minutes to prepare their notes. Each evaluator then had between two and three minutes to deliver an evaluation of Tony's speech. 
 
It was rewarding to see that each evaluation provided valuable commendations and recommendations that Tony could readily use in future speeches. 
 
During the time the evaluators were preparing their notes audience members were encouraged to offer up words or phrases that they wanted to see used more often, or perhaps, less often. A maelstrom of suggestions rained in with words such as capricious, parsimonious, antidisestablishmentarianism and discombobulation amongst a host of others. Irritants included fintech and ya'know. 
 
For the eagle-eyed among you I used one of the words hoped to be seen more often earlier in this article, did you spot it? 
 
As our highly informative and entertaining evening drew to a close it was time to present certificates of participation to each contestant and for the all important speech and evaluation contest results. 
 
The winners of each contest will go forward to represent Wokingham Speakers club at the Area contest that is being held on Saturday 21 March at Burhham. 
 
It gives me great pleasure to report that the winners were: 
 
International Speech contest: Steve Catchick Runner-Up: Marce Colucci 
Evaluation Contest: Amanda Bouch Runner-Up: Steve Catchick 
 
Best wishes of all club members go with Steve and Amanda as they progress to the next stage. If you can make it to the area contest I'm sure both speakers would appreciate the support.