University of Maryland Extension

4-H Public Speaking and Demonstration Contest 2017

4-H Public Speaking Contest
Friday, Mar. 10, 2017 - 6:30pm
Baltimore County 4-H Office
1114 Shawan Road
Cockeysville, MD 21030
United States
Event Type: 

The Baltimore County 4-H Public Speaking Contest is open to all 4-Hers.

The contest consists of five categories:  

  •  Clover Show and Tell and 4-H Pledge
  •  Prepared Speech
  •  Extemporaneous
  •  Radio Spot
  •  Interpretations  

Speeches are given by individuals, not teams.

 Each of the above categories includes four age groups:  

  •  Clovers:  5-7
  •  Junior:  8-10
  •  Intermediate:  11-13  
  •  Senior:  14-18   

Time Limits:  

  • Clover Show and Tell: 1-3 min. and
  • Clover/Junior 4-H Pledge: 1-2 mins.
  • Prepared:  Juniors: 3 to 5 minutes, Intermediates and Seniors: 4 to 6 minutes;    
  • Extemporaneous:  Juniors and Intermediates: 2 to 3 minutes, Seniors: 3 to 5 minutes;    
  • Radio Spot: 30 seconds for Juniors, Intermediates and Seniors.   
  • Interpretations:   Juniors - 1 ½ to 3 minutes, Intermediates - 2 to 4 minutes, Seniors - 3 to 5 minutes;    

Judges may deduct points for presentations not meeting or exceeding time limits.

What are the 5 categories?

Clover Show and Tell participants are ages 5-7 and have the opportunity to share any special toy, collectible or other favorite item with the audience. Clovers will have 1-3 min to showcase their special item followed by a question answer period with the audience.

Clover/Junior Pledge Clovers ages 5-7 and Juniors ages 8-10 will recite the 4-H pledge to the audience.

Prepared Speech contestants may speak on any topic.
It may be wise to discuss topics that could be considered controversial with your 4-H leader or educator before the contest. The speech may be written for a specific audience, such as a 4-H club, PTA, or a Rotary Club. Note cards containing a key word outline are permitted. Only juniors may use a complete script. Memorization is not encouraged.

Extemporaneous speakers will draw three topics and choose one topic to speak on. Juniors and Intermediates may have up to 30 minutes and Seniors up to 15 minutes to prepare their talk. Contestants may use one side of up to four, or both sides of up to two, 5 x 8 inch note cards to their key word outline. Extemporaneous speakers will be shown color time cards at correctly timed intervals indicating

Prepared Speech, Extemporaneous Speech and Interpretations contestants should not introduce themselves as part of their presentation. This will be done by an MC or room Host/Hostess.

Radio spots should be exactly 30 seconds in length and may include a musical or sound effect introduction and/or background, but may not include a spoken introduction or “tag” by anyone other than the contestant. If music or a sound effect is used, the contestant must provide and operate the sound-making device. The contestant will provide a complete written script (including notations about music/sound effects) to the timekeeper to aid in timing accuracy. Musical/sound effect introductions and endings are considered a part of the radio spot and must not cause the 30 second time limit to be exceeded. The spot should relate to 4-H, be original and be created by the contestant.

Interpretations: Interpretations are to be memorized oral interpretation or a selection of narrative in language of speaker’s choice. Interpretations consist of three categories:
Dramatic Interpretation
a. Oral interpretation, memorized by the speaker or a serious selection of narrative or dramatic literature. Monologues are acceptable.
b. Mime – use your body to create an interpretation
c. Poetry Interpretation – a memorized oral interpretation by the speaker.
d. Humorous Interpretation – a memorized oral interpretation of a humorous selection by the speaker. Cuttings may be taken from published plays or prose.

Please fill out the registration form below and send it into the 4-H office.

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