Empowering Voices, Building Futures: Public Speaking Competition

Student participating in the Interhouse Public Speaking competition, showcasing confidence and community spirit.

The Interhouse Public Speaking competition is a shining example of how our school empowers young women, fosters innovative education, and reflects our Catholic values. This annual event is not just about winning; it’s about cultivating character, promoting social responsibility, and instilling life-long skills in our students. The competition includes both Public Speaking and Spoken Word categories, providing a platform for students from all houses to showcase their oratory talents.

Public Speaking Topics

This year, the competition saw enthusiastic participation from students across all year levels. In the Public Speaking category, students tackled topics like ‘Laughter is the Best Medicine’, ‘Technology Has Helped Connect People, Not Isolate Them’, ‘Should the Minimum Wage be Raised?’, and ‘Schools Should Only Run Four Days a Week’. These topics encouraged students to think critically and express their viewpoints with confidence and clarity.

Spoken Word Themes

The Spoken Word section had its own unique themes, challenging students to explore and express ideas creatively. The themes were thoughtfully chosen to resonate with different age groups: ‘Seasons’ for Years 5 & 6, ‘New Beginnings’ for Years 7 & 8, ‘Overcoming Adversity’ for Years 9 & 10, and ‘The Importance of Diversity’ for Years 11 & 12. These themes not only allowed students to reflect on their personal experiences but also promoted empathy and global awareness.

Judge’s Feedback

“The participation in both the Junior and Senior public speaking competitions this year has been exceptional. As a judge, I have been incredibly impressed by the bravery and poise shown by all speakers. Their eloquence and passion highlight their individual talents but also speak volumes about our supportive community that nurtures such confidence,” said Jayne Kingwell, Acting Deputy Principal, Teaching & Learning.

Katarina Speaks

One of the Year 11 speakers was Katarina, who chose the topic ‘The Arts are Essential to Life.’ Katarina shared, “This deeply resonated with me because I’m very heavily involved in the arts program at Santa Maria, and the arts bring me so much joy. I hope that my speech encouraged others to try something new and get involved in the arts! It’s always a bit nerve-wracking, but I love being able to speak in front of people and talk about things that interest me and I’m passionate about. All my peers are so supportive and public speaking is always such a fun environment.”

Willow’s Thoughts

Year 8 student Willow also shared her experience, saying, “My preparation for the speech involved a fair amount of practice sessions at home. Through repetition, I gained confidence in my delivery and my ability to adjust the pace of my speech. I also dedicated extra time towards the opening and closing of my speech, ensuring that my audience would be hooked from start to finish. During my speech, I felt quite nervous; however, I also felt determined. Being nervous shows that I care about doing well. When I muffled a word or spoke too quietly, my determination gave me the resilience to push through any setbacks and challenges. I chose the topic of ‘How Goal Setting is Good For You’ because it closely aligns with my own experiences. This alignment provided more ideas, insights, and research for my speech, including examples of moving past failures when goals are not achieved.”

The Benefits for Students

The Interhouse Public Speaking competition not only builds confidence and resilience but also fosters collaboration, initiative, creativity, and critical thinking among our students. It is a testament to our commitment to innovative education and the holistic development of our students. More importantly, it strengthens the sense of community and belonging as students support each other and celebrate their collective achievements.

Through events like this, we prepare our young women to be articulate, empathetic, and responsible global citizens. The Interhouse Public Speaking competition is more than just a contest; it is a celebration of learning, growth, and the power of the spoken word.

Equipping Our Year 10 Students for the Future

Santa Maria College’s Future10 Program empowers Year 10 students with comprehensive guidance for academic and career planning. Through personalised course counselling, resources like the Learn Curriculum Handbook, and interactive events such as the Course Expo, students gain clarity and confidence in their subject choices. The program fosters a collaborative approach involving parents, teachers, and external representatives, ensuring students are well-prepared for their future pathways.

Read More »
the Winter Appeal and Outreach Mass at Santa Maria College.

Term 2 – Empowering Students and Community – Jennifer Oaten

As we conclude another remarkable term at Santa Maria College, we celebrate the myriad achievements and growth of our students. Term 2 was filled with empowering opportunities, from faith-based activities and learning innovations to social awareness projects and community engagements, embodying our Mercy values and commitment to excellence.

Read More »
Scroll to Top