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Speech Categories


What is it?

Speech is a fun extra-curricular activity in which you prepare a speech and perform it competitively at tournaments.  It is a great way to improve your public speaking skills, have fun, and make friends. There are 13 categories and they all focus on different types of speeches. Some are creative, meaning you write the speech yourself, and some are interpretive, meaning you find a selection from a published work and perform it. Usually, speeches are six to eight minutes long. At tournaments, you compete in three rounds and the top scorers from those rounds move on to a final round to compete for the top places.

What are the categories?

Creative Expression- You write your own speech to entertain and perform it. It is judged based on writing and delivery.

Discussion- You and your opponents discuss a prompt as a group and work together to come to an agreement or compromise on the issue.

Duo InterpretationYou and a partner present an interpretive piece together.

Extemporaneous Reading- You draw three story selections from from a group of about twenty and choose one to read. You have 30 minutes from the time you draw to the time you perform to prepare your selection and memorize an introduction.

Extemporaneous Speaking- You draw three current event questions and have 30 minutes to prepare a seven minute speech on your chosen topic.

Great Speeches- You present a sections of a historically significant speech and your analysis of its importance and effectiveness.

Humorous Interpretation- You present a humorous selection from a play, prose, or poem.

Informative Speaking- You write and present an unbiased speech to inform on a topic of your choice. You may also use posters or other visual aids in your presentation.

Original Oratory- You write and present a persuasive speech on a topic of your choice.

Serious Drama- You present a serious monologue or selection from a play.

Serious Poetry- You present a serious poem, selection of poems, or portion of a poem.

Serious Prose- You present a serious selection from a novel or short story.

Storytelling- Like Extemporaneous reading, you choose three stories from a selection and choose one. Then, you have 30 minutes to prepare and present your own interpretation of the story without a script.