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The Hong Kong Speech Festival: 7 Tips for Students

1. Choose your category strategically. Most students choose to compete in the very popular Solo Verse category. While this is fine, be aware that it is the most popular category in the Speech Festival. This means that there will be more students competing in each event as well as more waiting time at the competition.

2. Plan out your short-term preparation goals. The competition date seems far-off at first. But those few months of preparation time always end up flying by. Understand and plan for each stage of preparation, so that your child isn't scrambling to catch up as the competition date approaches.

3. Learn meaning first. The meaning of your poem is everything in this competition! If your child is unsure about what the poem actually means, then you can be sure the delivery at the competition will suffer. Help your child right at the beginning learn the meanings of the words alongside pronunciation. Once the meanings of the words are understood, discuss the larger themes of the poem and the poet's feeling about the subject of the poem.

4. Learn pronunciation from a voice recording. Start with a high quality recording done by a native English speaker and get it on an Mp3 player that your child can easily access. Make sure your child listens to it everyday! This is the best way to learn natural pronunciation.

5. Help your child deal with nervousness and stage fright. Even well prepared students get nervous on competition day. I've seen kids who put in months of training only to fall apart up on stage in a new and daunting environment. Talk with your child about strategies to deal with the jitters. Remember public speaking skills learnt now will benefit your child in years to come.

6. Learn from those with expertise. Encourage your child to talk to other students who have been to the Speech Festival in previous years. Seek the help from teachers at your child's school. You may also want to get in touch with a private speech trainer.

7. Focus on the bigger picture. Encourage your child to learn from the experience whatever the outcome. After the competition, celebrate your child's accomplishment - participating in Hong Kong Speech Festival. Spend time together doing something enjoyable, go for a hike the next weekend or plan a special family dinner. Your child will look back on the Hong Kong Speech Festival as a positive experience and don't be surprised if they ask to join the following year!

And now I'd like to invite you to join me at http://www.hkspeechfestival.com/ for more helpful tips and information on the Hong Kong Speech Festival.

From Megan at http://www.hkspeechfestival.com/

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