Lions Club High School Speak Out

Yesterday, our local Lions Club sponsored and held Pearson Academy’s Speak Out Competition. We had 17 student participants and an excellent audience turnout.

Speak-outs are great opportunities for youth to practice and build skills through public speaking, and to encourage them to have a public voice in issues that concern them.

The winners:

Rhianna Bishop, 1st Place. Topic: Leadership in Rural Communities

Jessica Melindy, 2nd Place. Topic: Growing Up with Mental Illness – Anxiety and O.C.D

Deidre Hounsell, 3rd Place. Topic: Dangers of Driving Under the Influence

Rhianna Bishop and Jessica Melindy. Missing from photo: Deidre Hounsell

As the first place winner,
Rhianna will compete later at the regional level.

Steve Perry, Lions member and moderator
Ted O’Connor, teacher and judge

The judges for the speak-out were Joanne Wiley, Theodore O’Connor and myself.

It was a privilege to spend time with these young adults and to volunteer once more for this worthy event.

***

Have you or your child ever competed
or taken part in a public speaking competition?

Today a reader…

Please encourage your children to read.

Give them books they would enjoy for Christmas.

Take them to the public library to get their own library card.

If they are too young to read themselves, read them bedtime stories.

It’s never too early to inspire a love of good books. No, they won’t all become leaders, but research shows that reading to children and discussing the book is the best way to increase your child’s IQ and instill a love of reading.

10 Ways for Parents to Encourage Their Child to Read

Friday Fiction – A Special Guest

Jennifer’s Friday Fiction

I’m pleased today to feature a special guest post on Friday Fiction.

My 12 year-old granddaughter Leah wrote the following flash fiction piece for school recently. When her mom showed it to me, I liked it so much, I asked Leah if she would allow me to publish it here on my blog.

Our family’s budding new writer readily agreed. Friends and followers, please take a moment to read it and tell me what you think!

roller coaster ride

Bart, the security guard, has always loved his job at the amusement park. He loves the greasy smell of deep-fried onions and the sweet smell of cotton candy drifting in the breeze as people happily skip by.

But there was just one thing that made Bart sad. He would always see people of all ages having so much fun with huge smiles on their faces as they jumped with excitement. Bart looked down at his chubby belly sticking out under his uniform with grease stains all over it from his recent lunch break. “I wish I could ride one of the roller coasters,” Bart thought to himself. All he wanted was to be able to ride a roller coaster and know what it was like to be happy and have fun.

Bart decided to make a plan. Maybe he could sneak onto a ride. No one would notice he was gone from his post because no one ever noticed he was there. Except for Trevor.

Trevor was Bart’s very strict boss. If Trevor ever found out about Bart’s plan, he would fire him for good and Bart definitely did not want that to happen. But he wanted to ride a roller coaster so bad, he was willing to take the chance.

Late one day, Bart was ready for action. It was 9:00 pm and the park closed at 10:00 pm. It was dark out so he wouldn’t be seen as easily. Bart slipped off his uniform so that he was left with a T-shirt and a pair of shorts on. He quickly put on his ball cap and ran off to the scariest ride in the park called “The Brain Wash”.

Bart got in line. While everyone was passing their tickets to the tall man standing at the entrance, Bart squeezed past the man without being seen. Bart had made it through!

He was finally on the ride. As the roller coaster was going up the steep hill with a ticking sound, he looked down at everyone below. They all looked like little ants. But there was one face that Bart could pick out. It was Trevor looking up at him with his arms folded across his chest. What if Bart got fired from his job?

pexels-photo-991438.jpeg

Forever in my Heart

My dad in his younger days. Always missed and forever in my heart.

 “That’s my father.”  … Seemingly an innocent and offhand remark made by the youngest of his three children, those three little words meant much more to our dad. I know it made him feel proud and happy to be that father, that figure of authority and loving protector of his family.
It was a responsibility he took seriously, a role that only he could execute with his unique brand of friendship, understanding and humour…” 

~ excerpt from That’s My Father, 03/21/13

I’m thinking of relatives and friends who lost their fathers very recently.
My heart goes out to them today.

   Wishing all the wonderful dads
a Happy Father’s Day
❤ ❤ ❤

Thanks, Mom!

Mom cut my bangs

Dear Mom,

Thank you for the many, many things you’ve ever done for me. As it is for most mothers, they are far too numerous to list here.

An endless list, actually. Hey, you even took it upon yourself to trim my bangs from time to time. Why would we bother driving to the beauty parlor when you were there, eager and happy to do it? How hard could it be? And naturally, your other daughter’s bangs didn’t escape your butchery expertise either.

Now Mom, I understand we were a one-income household at the time and you liked saving money wherever possible, but don’t you think your scissors-happy ways may have been a tad aggressive, especially for a school photo, recorded for posterity?

This practice of yours was nearly as darling as your penchant for dressing up my sister and me as twins. Never mind that I was two and a half years older than her.

And yet, as I flip through this old family album, my heart swells.

I see your smile.

I hear your laughter.

I feel the love.

I see my happy childhood, personified, in all of these snaps of captured memories.

And you know what, Mom? It makes me realize I wouldn’t change a single thing.

– Love your daughter,
Jennifer

Wishing a Happy Mother’s Day to all the loving moms out there!

Imagination

kids wearing coffee filter hats
Sunday Snap: Imagination

 Coffee filters have many uses.
All you need is a little imagination.
And a little brother to share them with.

This photo wasn’t taken yesterday – our angels are 10 and 12 now.

“That’s the real trouble with the world, too many people grow up.” ~ Walt Disney

Sea Star

seastar

Sunday Snap: Sea Star

There’s treasure children always seek to find
and just like us
you must have had
a Once-Upon-a-Time.*


Did you know?
 Marine scientists have replaced the starfish’s common name with sea star because it’s not a fish. It’s an echinoderm, closely related to sea urchins and sand dollars. There are 2,000 species of sea star living in all the world’s oceans. The five-arm varieties are the most common. Sea stars have an eye at the tip of each arm.

Common name: Starfish (Sea Stars)

Scientific name: Asteroidea

Type: Invertebrate Carnivore

Average life span: Up to 35 years

Weight: Up to 11 lbs

 source: National Geographic

 

*from Curtains by Elton John & Bernie Taupin

High School Speak-Out

Last Friday, I had the honour to serve as one of three judges in our local high school’s speak-out competition.

Held and sponsored by Badger’s Quay Lions Club, this year’s event boasted nineteen students competing from Pearson Academy, the highest number of participants in all of Atlantic Canada. Good on you, teen citizens!

Purpose of a Speak-Out:

• To provide youth with the opportunity to practice and build skills through public speaking
• To encourage youth to have a public voice in issues of concern to them

And the winners are:

Left to right: Leah Lewis, Megan Kelloway, and Bridgette Burry

Bridgette, 3rd place. Topic: The dangers of drunk driving.

Leah, 2nd place. Topic: Being “Seventeen” in today’s world.

Megan, 1st place. Topic: How cancer in a family affects the children. As the winner, Megan will go on to compete at the regional level next month.

Megan had us teary-eyed (her mom survived)
Leah had us laughing with her take on Seventeen
Boys took part but were outnumbered by the girls.

What stood out about the winners: plenty of eye contact, how well they articulated their thoughts, and how animated and relaxed they were with the audience.

19 participants (plus a few more) attending the event from Pearson

I thought all the students did very well with the preparation of their chosen material. As per speak-out regulations, however, several excellent speeches received penalties for exceeding time limits.

I enjoyed this event immensely and would love to be invited back again, and I’m super-encouraged by the high level of participation and interest in public speaking demonstrated by our local youth.

Has your child ever competed in a public speaking event?
Share your experiences with me below.

Dancing with the Waves

Not to be confused with last month’s Jumping the Waves.

I thought it only fair to feature both of our grandchildren enjoying the ocean!

Travel Theme: Warm

Jumping the Waves

Photo first published here: Sunshine, Surf and Sand

I’m away, so comments are closed. Have a lovely Sunday! – JKP