The National Public Speaking Competition 2012, March 1:
"The Wisdom of Youth"
The City Council at 12 Vana-Viru was very crowded on March 1: about 100 people gathered in the Big Hall to listen to the best young public speakers of Estonia. The fourth National Public Speaking Competition was held in the City Council premises. The Competition was organized and run by the English-Speaking Union of Estonia. HM Ambassador Mr. Holtby welcomed the audience and wished every success to the participants. He was impressed by the number of the contestants and guests. He said: ‘I much enjoyed witnessing the first heat, including the enthusiasm and commitment of the participants from across Estonia.’
This is an annual event run by the English-Speaking Union International in London in May, where the winner of he National Competition represents their country.
This year we had 37 bright young people aged 16-20 from all over Estonia: Tallinn, Tartu, Pärnu, Kohtla-Jarve, Jõhvi, Viljandi. Senior students of 24 schools competed in five Heats delivering their 5-min speeches on the theme “The Wisdom of Youth” and answer some questions from the audience. The choice of topics was varied, from beauty and relationship to philosophy and IT. The winners of the Heats progressed to the semi-final, where they had 15 min to prepare their 3-min speeches. The six best speakers competed in the Final with the same 5-min speeches and the judges had a very hard time making their decision as all the finalists very good. The judges for the Final were: Robert Gilchrist, Deputy Chief of Mission, US Embassy; Professor Suliko Liiv, Tallinn University, Director of the Institute of Germanic- Romance Languages and Cultures; Andrus Alber, AmCham President; Ian Watts, Defence Attache, British Embassy; Gustaf Hertsius, ESU Estonia.
The best young public speakers and their winning speeches this year are:
winner : Vahur
Hansen - Gustav Adolf Grammar School, ’ The Three States of Mind’
The English Speaking Union would like to thank all the instutions and people who supported the Competition in any way. Special thanks go to:
To see the photos visit our Blog.
The first ESU Estonia seminar for students on public
speaking and impromptu speech, January 10, 2012. Getting ready for the Competition.
On January 10 the very first seminar for students was held by the ESU Estonia team at Jakob Westholm Gymnasium. About 70 students and 15 teachers attended the event. They all were from different schools across Estonia: Tallinn Jakob Westholm Gymnasium, Tallinn French School, Tallinn High School of Humanities, Tallinn English College, Tallinn Gustav Adolf Gymnasium, Võru Kreutzwaldi Gümnaasium, Kohtla-Järve Ühisgümnaasium, Kohtla-Järve Ahtme Gümnaasium , Miina Härma Gümnaasium, Tallinna Mustamae Humanitaargumnaasium, Sakala Private School, Viimsi School, Audentes School, Audentes Sports Gymnasium, Tallinna Tõnismäe Reaalkool, Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium, Tallinn Secondary Science School, Tallinn Järveotsa Gymnasium, Pirita Majandus Gümnaasium, Tallinn Jewish School, Pärnu Ülejõe Gymnasium, Jõhvi Vene Gümnaasium.
We are very grateful to our host school JWG and its teachers Marje Liigus and Tiina Tiiman, who prepared all the necessary equipment for a smooth run of the seminar. The presentation and coaching session was done by Phillip Marsdale, the director of the International Language Services language school and ESU Estonia member. Gustaf Hertsius and Vladimir Svet, both ESU Estonia Committee members, talked about their personal experience in public speaking and gave some advice too.
Here is what some teachers and students say about it.
Marje Liigus, teacher, Jakob Westholm Gymnasium: “The event was successful, of course.
I even did not expect so many participants. It is good that teachers have taken
the speaking contest seriously and have also involved more students than in
Kristina Tsventarnaja, student, Kohtla-Jarve Ühisgümnaasium:
“On 10th of January we were in
Jacob Westholm Gymnasium on ESU seminar.
National Public Speaking Competition 2012 is organised by the English-Speaking Union of Estonia. It is aimed at young people who strive to achieve excellence in English and make active use of the English language. This competition gives students the opportunity to express their opinions to a young audience, who like themselves, are facing questions about their own lives and their hopes for the future. The theme for the National Competition 2012 is The Wisdom of Youth. Participants may interpret the theme in any way they wish, but may not use the theme as the title of their speech. The chosen topic and title cannot be changed during the competition.
RULES ESU NATIONAL PUBLIC SPEAKING COMPETITION 2012
2. Theme 2012 – The Wisdom of Youth
Speakers may interpret the theme in any way they wish, but may not use the theme (topic) as the title of their speech.
The organisers reserve the right to reject unsuitable titles or topics. It is appreciated that speakers have limited time to make their case and competitors’ persuasiveness and ingenuity in dealing with the subject is of considerable importance. Although the judges may penalise the treatment of any subject they consider offensive, unnecessary flippant or outside the aims of the competition, speakers should not be afraid to be provocative, hard-hitting or humorous as long as their intention is clearly constructive. It is advisable to ensure that the speech – and this applies especially to a more light-hearted topic – has pith and substance. Speakers must avoid speeches that are likely to be perceived as doctrinal or political.
The timing is therefore as follows:
The judges’ decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into.
Schools willing to participate should send an e-mail
by January 15.
Registration for the National Public Speaking Competition 2012
The ESU of Estonia
National Public Speaking Competition 2010: “Speculation on Our Future“
The Estonian National Finals of the English Speaking Union, Schools Public Speaking Competition,were held on March 4th at the Russian Cultural Centre,Tallinn.
The proceedings were officially opened by Toomas Vitsut,Chairman of ESU Estonia at 1pm. Mr Vitsut welcomed all participants and their supporters and thanked the teachers for their enthusiastic preparitary work.
Twenty nine contestants participated from 17 schools from Tartu, Rakvere, Kohtla-Järve, Viimsi and Tallinn.
First were held four Heats which produced four winners and four runners-up all eight of whom then competed in the National Final held before a large audience.This produced an excellent variety of interpretations of the theme `Speculation on Our Future`.The judges, Gustaf Hertsius, Eha Teder, Suliko Liiv, Dario Cavegn, Alexandr Romenski, Tuuli Oder and Tiiu Vitsut finally came to their verdict and it fell to Michael Wynne-Parker,Chairman of the Judges and Former Governor of the ESU of the Commonwealth to announce the winner: Mariell Vain of Tallinn English College. Second came: Martin Kilp of Tartu Miina Härma Gymnasium, and third came Grigory Gavrilov of Tallinn High School Of Humanities. Meanwhile the audience had participated in a secret ballot which produced its own favourite: Maria Steffil of Kohtla-Järve.
Now the Estonian ESU Champion speaker,Mariell Vain, and the runner-up Martin Kilp are preparing to go to London to represent Estonia in the International Finals to be held in May. We try to find sponsors for sending the runner-up Martin Kilk to London as well.
The ESU of Estonia is very grateful to Eugenia Djachuk, Katrin Ojaveer, Merike Saar for acting as chairpersons and timekeepers, to Riina Altpere for her coordination skills and Zinaida Jevgrafova the efficient Organizer of the competition.
For more information please contact: Zinaida Jevgrafova
For more pictures visit our blog
The ESU of Estonia
National Public Speaking Competition 2009
The first ESU Schools Public Speaking Competition was held on 12th
March. 13 competitors took part from 6 schools. Toomas Vitsut,
Chairman of the ESU of Estonia welcomed all-competitors, judges,
teachers, members of the ESU and others. Riina Altpere took the chair
and explained the background to the competition. She then introduced
the Judges-HE Peter Carter, British Ambassador acting as Chairman
of the Jury,
Michael Wynne-Parker Member of the ESU of Estonia
Committee, Former Governor of the ESU of the Commonwealth,
Suliko Liiv Professor, Tallinn University, Institute of Germanic-
Romance Languages and Cultures, Director,
Tuuli Oder Tallinn University, Language SchoolDirector,
Gustaf Hertsius Member of the ESU of Estonia Committee
Riina Altpere introduced the Convenor Zinaida Jevgrafova
( Member of the ESU of Estonia Committee) and Timekeeper finally
calling all contestants to come forward to select a number 1-13 in a
ballot to decide the order of speaking.
13 competitors took part from 6 schools: Karl-Jakob Jürna, Tõnis Veispak and Paap Urbanus from Tallinn English College, Mari Pever and Trinu Lepp from Tallinn French School, Kristen Gilden and Ott Ilves from Gustav Adolf Grammar School, Ingrid Teesalu and Klarika Feldberg from Tallinn Kuristiku Gymnasium, Peeter-Paul Hallaste and Ken Kõrve from Viimsi Secondary School, Ekke Piirisild and Hendrik Kaju from Tallinn Secondary Science School.
Following the 5 minute speeches 2 minutes was allowed for a variety of interesting questions. Although many of the competitors chose the topic of the threatened environment, many were very creative and argued for topics ranging from "man should move to mars", "The human race has to stop breeding to come in balance with the available resources" to "We have to save the smaller and endangered languages". The jury was looking for an outstanding candidate to represent Estonia in a completion against youth from over 60 countries ( is this the correct number). The main points in the assessment of each candidate was:
Subject, reasoning and evidence
Expression and delivery
Responding to questions
After the final speech the jury retired. Following their return and after a great deal of suspense Ambassador Carter announced the overall winner was Ingrid Teesalu from Kuristiku Gümnaasium closely followed by Triinu Lepp ja Mari Pever from Tallinn French School .
Mr Peter Carter ambassador etc chairman of the jury motivated their choice by saying that Ingrid Teesalu was not only able to communicate her message clearly but held the audience in the grasp of her hand from the beginning until the end of her speech.
This luck winner will now go to London in May to participate in the International Finals a daunting task. She will need a great deal of luck but with all our support and encouragement she will represent Estonia with distinction!
contact person : Zinaida Jevgrafova
The First ESU Estonia Public Speaking Competition
In preparation for the first English Speaking Union of Estonia Schools Public Speaking Competition a meeting of English teachers from participating schools was held on 22nd January in Tallinn.
The meeting was addressed by Michael Wynne-Parker, a former Governor of the ESU of the Commonwealth who has had a long experience of the Schools Speaking Competition both in the UK where he has been Chairman of a local branch, Regional Chairman and Deputy National Chairman and Sri Lanka where he co-founded the ESU and held office as Chairman during which period over 5000 young Sri Lankans aquired a communicative skill in English and finally participated in and won the International Final of the Schools Competition in London against 43 other National teams.
Mr Wynne-Parker spends part of each year in Estonia which he uses as his writing base. He is author of four books and at present working on his fifth.
At the teachers' meeting Mr Wynne-Parker outlined both something of the 80-year history of the ESU and also the background to the Competition. He described the theme, the aims and the rules of this year's Competition and provided constructive ideas relating to speech content and delivery.
Following his presentation many questions were asked and arrangements for the Tallinn competition, to be held on 2th March, were discussed.
Contact person: Zinaida Jevgrafova
The English-Speaking Union of Estonia