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By Tina Depko, Oakville Beaver Staff
Published in the Oakville Beaver on Feb 25, 2009

The administrator of a public speaking website is asking Halton residents, especially students, to post their used speeches.
Melissa Wang, an Oakville parent and St. Michael Catholic School volunteer, has put out a call for speech submissions for the website www.ourspeeches.com .

The site currently features more than 30 speeches, predominantly written by students at St. Michael. Wang said she would like to expand the submission list to include speeches written by students, as well as adults, across the region.

“It will be helpful for students to read something written by students the same age and see how they write,” she said. “Then they will think, ‘Someone can do that, so can I.’ It is also a good way to see how other kids think about certain topics so they can get their own ideas.”

The website came online in May 2008 with the intent of helping students prepare for public speaking competitions. The idea was actually the brainchild of Wang’s son, Xin-Xin. The Grade 6 St. Michael student came up with the idea when he was taking part in his school’s public speaking competition last year.

“My son was in Grade 5 last year, and he was preparing his speech and he said there should be a website to help students prepare and get ideas,” Wang said. “When he started in Grade 4, he didn’t know where to go for help. It is harder for the young kids.”

Besides used speeches written by students, the website also features public speaking tips, news and events, and lists of winners from the Halton Catholic District School Board Regional Public Speaking Competition and St. Michael School Public Speaking Festival.

The content for the website was a collaborative effort between the Wang family and St. Michael School staff and parents. The pages for the site have been created by Xin-Xin.

“I run the website, but all the pages were created by my son,” Wang said. “He likes working with computers.”

People interested in posting speeches need to first sign up as a member on the site, then submit their writing directly online.

Although the focus is on speeches written by students, adults can also submit their writing, as long as it is on a family-friendly subject, Wang said.

“Speeches I’m looking for are from anyone who has participated in public speaking,” she said. “It started out for students in Grades 4 to 8, but I want speeches from all ages.”

Wang said she not only wants to add speeches, but also other winners’ lists from public speaking events at schools across the region.

The site is featuring a surprise draw to motivate people to share their past work.

Wang said she has big plans for the website, with the goal of making it the largest online speech database.

“I’m hoping it will grow so people from around the world can read the speeches and submit their own,” she said.

She added that helping youths with public speaking will give them an advantage in life.

“I think kids learn presentation skills and writing skills, which are important,” she said. “You can also look at someone like (Barack) Obama, who is really good at public speaking and see what a difference being able to do that makes.”

For information, e-mail Melissa Wang at mwang@ourspeeches.com or go online to www.ourspeeches.com .




For Parents/Guardians
****************************

Posted on 2008-05-13
Dear Parents/Guardians,

To help students better prepare for their annual public speaking events, a website named www.ourspeeches.com has been developed by the Wang family working together with the Principal at the School.

After months of hard work, the website is launching on Tuesday May 13th, 2008. This is an online resource website dedicated to help students prepare for the annual public speaking events.

The mission of this site is to provide resources to help students prepare their speeches every year and encourage them to do their best.
OurSpeeches.com is committed to provide:
• Sample speeches from our Grade 4 -8 students for anyone to view which will help students with topic ideas;
• Tips and Secrets from teachers, parents, speakers, or even from their own experiences which will help students during the public speaking season, starting from choosing a topic, doing research, to rehearsal and presentation;
• Interesting stories from all the users related to public speaking which will give students encouragement and allow them to have fun as well;
• A personal account for each user to manage his/her own speeches, tips and secrets, interesting stories, comments etc.

Everyone has the opportunity to register for an account and upload their yearly speeches (include the past years’ speeches), tips and secrets, stories and comments to share. Parents, guardians, teachers, families, and friends are also welcome to register for an account and share your work with us. For example, your first speech experience, how you prepared your graduation speech or whatever you think might help students to do better.

If you know of anyone who participated in past years’ public speaking events or other public speaking contests, please invite them to join ourspeeches.com to share their speeches with us as well.

To achieve this goal, we will need your support by sending your consent for your children to fully participate now as well as in the future and get the most they can from the website. To save you time, you may simply click the link sent to your e-mail address provided by your son/daughter when they begin the registration process. You can submit it online.

We recommend you go and check the website first and do the sign-up process together with your child. You will fully understand what we are offering. For more information, please visit www.ourspeeches.com.

Sincerely,
The Our Speeches Team


The 2010 Speech Sharing Raffle Draw winners
Posted on 2010-05-13
Congratulations to our 2010 Speech Sharing Spirit Contest Winners!

The Raffle Draw was held at St. Michael School on Thursday, May 13th.
The winners and their prizes were (For privacy reasons, we do not post names, only grade and school names.):

Aldershot High School, Burlington
Grade 7
A pair of EX Admimission passes

Brantwood Public School, Oakville
Grade 6
Computer Mouse

River Oaks Public School, Oakville
Grade 6
Computer Mouse
Sir Alexander Mackenzie, Toronto
Grade 7
Classic Bowl Certificate for 6

St. Andrew School, Oakville

Grade 5
$20 Chinese Restaurant Coupon

Snow Tubing Tickets for 2

St. John School, Oakville

Grade 6
Raptors Basket Ball Jersey Shirt
One Pizza+Pop @Boston Pizza

St. Michael School, Oakville

Grade 5
Nail Spa Certificate
2 pairs of EX Admission Passes
Free Hair Cut

Grade 6
Pizza +Pop @ Boston Pizza
2 Toronto Zoo Passes

Grade 7
great glasses $200 certificate
The EX Pass for 2
Pizza Party for 4 @ Boston Pizza
One week Basketball Camp
Tubing Passes for 2
Manchu Wok Lunch/Dinner for 2
Crown with crystall
Lunch Bag
Oakville Museum Family pass
Ski Lift Tickets for 2

Grade 8
Manchu Wok Lunch/Dinner for 2
Pizza Party for 6 @ Boston Pizza

Thanks everyone for your participation to help make ourspeeches.com a success. Winners from schools other than St. Michael School in Oakville will be contacted by email to arrange a pick up or delivery of the prizes within the coming week.

Also a big thank you to our generous sponsors for their donation of prizes to encourage the sharing spirit at OurSpeeches.com. They are:

Boston Pizza, Oakville
Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto
Classic Bowl, Mississauga
great glasses, Dorval – Oakville
Hoops All-stars www.hoopsallstars.com
Manchu Wok, Oakville Place

Snow Valley, Minesing
The UPS Store, 3rd Line/ Upper Middle Oakville


Extended Deadline for 2010 Speech Sharing Contest
Posted on 2010-03-22
To accommodate for our anniversary celebration, we have decided to extend the deadline for the "2010 Speech Sharing Contest" to Friday, April 30th, 2010. The Raffle Draw will be held on Thursday, May 13th, 2010 and the Pizza Party will be on Thursday May 27th, 2010


2010 Speech Sharing Raffle Draw Coming Soon...
Posted on 2010-01-10
To encourage more students to submit their used speeches on OurSpeeches.com, the online public speaking resource website decided to hold the Speech Sharing Raffle Draw again this year. Entries start on Monday, February 1, 2010 and the deadline is on Wednesday 31, 2010. The draw will be held on April 22, 2010. All students from the region are invited to submit one or more original speeches. Please check back for more details



Share Your Speeches from the past with others
Posted on 2008-06-30
Dear Parents/Guardians,

We need your help!

As you may be aware, since May we have introduced the public speaking website ourspeeches.com to our Grade 4-8 students in the school. A presentation to School Council members took place at the regular meeting on Tuesday, May 20,2008.

Our goal is to help our students better prepare for the annual public speaking competitions. To accomplish that goal, we are collecting all past years’ speeches to be put on the website to get ready for December when the students will start doing research for the 2009 Public Speaking Competition. This definitely will help them with brainstorming topic ideas and learn from others how to be a great speaker.

During the past month, students and families have already published their speeches on the website. We would like to have more participation.

You might have kept past speeches written by your sons/daughters over the past years. If you could help us achieve our goal, please hand them in to the office with a note indicating in which year and grade the speech was written and that you give permission to publish these speeches on www.ourspeeches.com. Permission form is available online at the “News and Events” section for Parents/Guardians area or you can fill one out in the school office.

More details are on the website at the “FAQ” section.
Thanks in advance for helping our children to improve their writing and oral presentation skills.

Sincerely yours,
Melissa Wang
Site Administrator
mwang@ourspeeches.com


GR. 4-8 Public Speaking Website Launch – Tuesday, May 13
Posted on 2008-05-03
The Wang family has created a website which helps students create speeches for our annual public speaking competition. Any student can join the website and search for tips and strategies for creating the perfect speech. They can also share ideas and upload actual speeches that can be shared with one another. You will find more information at: www.ourspeeches.com...


Launch Date decided
Posted on 2008-05-02
After months of hard work, a website named www.ourspeeches.com is launching on May 13, 2008. This is an online resource website dedicated to help students prepare for their annual public speaking Contest. It has been developed by the Wang family working together with the Principal at the School.
...



Thanks
To 

Boston Pizza
270 North Service RD. W.
Oakville, L6M 2R8
Phone: 905-849-8100
Category: Restaurant

Canadian National Exhibition
Press Building, Exhibition Place
Toronto, ON M6K 3C3
Phone: 416-263-3800
Category: Government Listings

Classic Bowl
3055 Dundas street West, Unit 20
Mississauga, ON L5L 3R8
Phone: 905-607-2695
Category: Bowling Centre

great glasses
great glasses
220 North Service Road West
Dorval - Oakville, ON
Phone: 905-849-1522
Category: Opticians-Dispensing,
Contact Lenses

Hoops All-stars
www.hoopsallstars.com
Phone: 905-617-2774
Toll-free: 1-866-HOOPS (46677)
Category: Kids Summer Basketball Camp

ManchuWOK
240 Leighland Ave. #141
Oakville, ON L6H 3H6
Phone: 905-842-1098
Category: Chinese Foods

Snow Valley
2632 Vespra Valley Road
Minesing, ON L0L 1Y3
Phone: 1-877-404-4744
Category: Skiing Centers & Resorts

The UPS Store
6-1500 Upper Middle Road
Oakville, ON L6M 0C2
Phone: 905-469-0414
Category: Mail Boxes, Business Services


For their donation of prizes to encourage the sharing spirit at OurSpeeches.com.

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