Oration Contest showcases students’ written, verbal skills
Posted on 06/13/2018
Oration Contest group photo

One might reasonably conclude that the nine students who participated in the district-level Oration Contest are among the 10 percent of people who enjoy, and actually thrive, on public speaking.

The contestants, who ranged from grades five to eight, previously won their school and learning community competitions before advancing to the district final. Addressing the topic, “Inventions that have improved the quality of life,” speakers discussed the value of smartphones, antibiotics, smallpox vaccine, internet, modern toilet, clothes dryer, satellites, and ocean cleanup.

Charlotte BattenCharlotte Batten, a fifth grader from Lakemont Elementary who spoke about the smallpox vaccine, won the competition. She received a trophy and will present her speech at a school board meeting in the fall.

Kayana Adlam, who was a fifth grader at Shenandoah Elementary, received an honorable mention in the 2017 national contest. Recognizing that success, district officials decided to sponsor the learning community and district competition so students could continue with the OCPS tradition.

Dr. Maria Vazquez, Chief Academic Officer; Woody “Diego” Rodriguez, District General Counsel; and Maurice Draggon, Director of Curriculum, Instruction & Digital Learning judged the students on the content, organization and oral delivery of the speech.

Practicing public speaking not only improves students’ confidence and communication skills, but it also improves their ability to organize and support their thoughts.

The Modern Woodmen of America sponsored the school-based competition. They provided plaques to the first, second and third place winners, gold-plated pins to the top 12 contestants and a certificate of participation to each student who presented.

District level participants included:

Rhianna Allen, Rock Lake Elementary
Kristen Alvey, Dr. Phillips Elementary
Camila Barbosa, Independence Elementary
Charlotte Batten, Lakemont Elementary
Embe Encinias, Shenandoah Elementary
Britney Evans, Conway Middle
Jude Goddard, East Lake Elementary
Luke Ulmer, Lake Sybelia Elementary
Zaylind Tatum, Princeton Elementary