The county extension office pressed ahead this month with the annual countywide 4-H Public Speaking competition, although a little differently than they have in the past.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the competition was not held in person, but through videos sent from the schools and parents. Also, this year the 4-H Public Speaking competition was not sponsored by Tropicana, but solely through Florida 4-H.
On Friday, Feb. 12, a panel of two judges watched the videos at the UF IFAS Franklin Extension Office on its large projection screen. The judges provided critiques and scored the speeches, and the score/critique cards were then sent to the schools along with the awards.
Each school sent videos of their top three school-wide competitors.
Those competing in the Sixth Grade Division, from the Apalachicola Bay Charter School, were Elena Rodriguez, who spoke on Fears; Drew Rickards, whose speech was on Millions vs Billions; and Chloe Montgomery, whose topic was Déjà Vu.
In the Sixth Grade division from the Franklin County Schools, Maisie Kim gave a speech on Mythical Creatures; and Ashton Carey, spoke on Endangered Animals.
In the Fourth and Fifth Grade Division, from the ABC School, Easton Johnson talked about Giraffes; Maddie Lolley spoke on the History of Apalachicola; and Brody Johnson gave a speech on Baseball.
In the Fourth and Fifth Grade Division, from the Franklin County Schools, Jaxon Millender spoke on King Cobras; Kenslie Harris talked about My Two Dogs; and Ayden Millender, on How I Got my Bearded Dragon.
In the Fourth and Fifth Grade Division, from Homeschooled students, Bailey Allen spoke on History Travel.
In the Sixth Grade Division, Rodriguez’s speech on Fears took first, Rickards talk on Millions vs Billions was runner-up, Montgomery’s speech on Déjà Vu third, and Kim’s take on Mythical Creatures fourth.
In the Fourth and Fifth Grade Division, Allen’s speech on History Travel received first place, Lolley’s talk on the History of Apalachicola was second, Brody Johnson’s speech on Baseball third, and Jaxon Millender’s talk about King Cobras fourth.
“We thank everyone for going the ‘extra mile’ and making the 4-H Public Speaking County Competition a success,” said County Extension Agent Erik Lovestrand. “The judges were quite impressed with our youth, their topics and the passion each competitor displayed in their speech. The decisions were very close.”
Allen and Rodriguez have qualified for the district competition. The 4-H Public Speaking District Competition will be held April 24.
This article originally appeared on The Apalachicola Times: Public speaking via videos