Public speaking contests are offered on the county/city level, and qualifying youth are eligible to compete at the state level in the following areas; Extemporaneous, Interpretation, Prepared Speech, and Radio Spot. In addition, youth who received Champion or Reserve Champion placings at their county/city level public speaking contest in the above categories are eligible and encouraged to participate in the State 4-H Public Speaking Contest.
The contest will be held virtually this year - youth will register and upload a video of their speech. The only exception is for the Extemporaneous category - youth competing in this category will register and then present their Extemporaneous speech live via Zoom on Friday, October 1st starting at 6:30 pm.
Registration and video upload timeline: August 18 - September 26, 2021
How Do I Enter the Contest?
- Please remember the State 4-H Public Speaking Contest is for eligible youth who received a Champion or Reserve Champion placing in Prepared, Radio Spot, Interpretation, or Extemp at a 2021 county/city level public speaking contest.
- You must identify your primary 4-H membership county to enter this contest.
- Entries will be accepted via 4-H online.
- Contestant information will be collected through 4-H online, and videos and scripts will be uploaded.
- Each age group will have a separate upload area within 4-H online.
- Each 4-H member must be entered individually.
- The entry deadline is September 26th.
To register, go to 4-H Online.
The file name needs to include the 4-H member's name.
Example: Chris Clover V1.
Uploading a Finished Video
We have made this process as easy as possible using a Google form to collect your information. Only video files can be uploaded—for example, .MP4 or .Mov files. Most devices/cell phones/digital cameras typically save video as .MP4 or .Mov. Uploading a video to the submission form may take a few minutes, but this will depend on the length and size of the file you are uploading.
Uploading Scripts / Notes
Please make sure you have taken a picture of any extra documents you would like to upload, or these can be added directly from your computer.
4-H Public Speaking Philosophy
One of the many life skills that 4-H offers youth is effective public speaking. This skill, along with many others, helps to build confidence and leadership. Public speaking fosters creativity, critical thinking skills, leadership abilities, poise, and professionalism, valuable for the job market and life. Public speaking is an individual development experience. The speaker's own growth, measured against their own previous experience and accomplishments, is the most important feature of the program. Although the 4-H structure does identify "winners" in the competition, the primary objective is to develop strong communication skills in individual members.
Confident, responsible self-expression is a goal of the communication program. Public Speaking helps members to organize and present ideas, opinions, and information, logically and persuasively. They are building confidence in self-expression and taking responsibility for the most important skill of adult life - communication.
Judging their efforts provides valuable guidance to these young speakers. Judges' comments reinforce and reward their efforts. An unbiased observer can identify strengths and pinpoint areas needing attention. Judging speeds growth and development by presenting a clear, honest reﬂection to the speaker.
This contest will take a lot of work by the 4-H member and, in some cases, their family. We want to express a special thank you to all those who assist in holding the camera, the technical aspects, listen to the presentation for the 50th time, wash the 4-H shirt, offer encouragement, and give that big hug when it is all finished and done. Our program is only as strong as our members and supporters, and we know we have the best in the country.
Questions can be directed to
Navonne Owen firstname.lastname@example.org
Amy Rhodes email@example.com
- Each judge will be assigned to an age group and category.
- Judging will be done online through the video submissions.
- Judges may be required to judge multiple categories and age groups accordingly.
- Judges use a score sheet containing a rubric that identifies key areas related to the category, allowing judges to assign points related to the quality of each presentation.
- Each judge will provide comments and an overall score independently for each 4-H member. These scores will then be averaged to determine a winner.
- Timing counts, so practice, practice, practice. Points will be deducted if the speech does not fit the time parameters.
- It is the goal of the 4-H Program to leave participates with positive, creative comments and allow them to maintain their self-esteem during the evaluation process by the judges.
- Below are the judging score sheets. Please look over them for more insight on each area judged.
- Judging sheets will be shared via email or mail with each youth after the contest.
- Awards will be distributed through your county/city extension offices and will be available for pick up or mailing.
- Each age group and category will have a Champion and Reserve Champion winner.
Online Streaming Live October 10, 2021, at 6 pm
The 2020 Public Speaking Showcase