October 2, 2007


I hate speech contest season. Not just because I have to try (with inevitable failure) to improve kids' pronunciation ("Er. Er. Er. No, not 'ah'. Er!"), but because the speeches themselves are unnatural and filled with mistakes. We are teaching kids to memorize, by heart, incorrect English. I complain to the English teachers. They say, oh, we'll tell them. No one ever gets told. The speeches have been the same for three years, only they added in some new mistakes. I would say, "Let native speakers create the speeches," but lets face it, I cannot agree with other NESs during a simple eikaiwa about proper use. In fact, I think a NES I know was involved last year, because as I was complaining about the mistake-riddled MLK speech, he proclaimed, "There are NO mistakes in there!"
I say replace these artificial speeches with speeches people have actually given. Instead of talking about Martin Luther King Jr., give his "I have a dream" speech.