Saturday, July 19, 2014

Mason Speech and Debate team holds public speaking camp

Juliana Discher I Staff Writer

Speaking is a skill everyone is born with, but public speaking is a talent that takes years to refine.
Mason Speak Week, held at Mason High School from July 14-18 teaches sixth through tenth graders the delivery techniques necessary to become successful public speakers.

S&D co-captain senior Jenny Zheng said the camp has lots to offer for students attending.

“We target [Speak Week] towards younger kids who are not in high school yet,” said Zheng. “The camp teaches them every day speaking skills, specifically verbal delivery and physical presentation. It is supposed to help them in school presentations or just speaking to another person.”

 According to Zheng, there are two levels to the camp, introductory and advanced.

Zheng said that the introductory level, which is for first year participants, focuses on the core foundations of public speaking. Students practice speech writing and researching as well. After the basics are learned, they apply their knowledge through different exercises.

Students who have attended the camp before are put into the advanced level. This level allows students to zero in on a particular event or two. The event options include debate, interpretation, oratory, and limited prep.

Both levels conclude on the last day with a mock tournament where students get to showcase the skills they learned.

Zheng said that Speak Week has a large significance on the Speech and Debate team.

“This is our major fundraiser for the year,” Zheng said. “It’s our support system for the team and it carries us throughout the rest of the season. Plus, we like to help the community and teach the kids new skills.”