Junior Speech Competition 2019

JLTAV Junior Speech Competition Event Report

The annual JLTAV Junior Speech Competition was held at Presentation College Windsor on Sunday 25 August. This year we had 120 participants, 63 primary students and 57 secondary students from 27 schools across Victoria.

We would like to congratulate all participants and thank all involved. It was pleasing to see so many enthusiastic students presenting their speeches and role-plays in Japanese. The competition is one way of encouraging students to continue with their Japanese language learning. We hope the students who participated in the competition continue their Japanese studies as knowing another language is a valuable skill and will open up many opportunities.

It is not easy to stand before a large audience and deliver a speech in another language and we would like to congratulate all the students for their courageous efforts. Thanks also go to the teachers and parents for supporting and encouraging the students and for the time spent preparing for the competition. We also acknowledge the support from those who drove from regional areas to participate.

We would like to thank the judges who gave up their time on a Sunday to support our Association and to judge our contest. Special thanks to:

Eleni Capp

Nicole Struthers

Yoshi Uemura

Shu Ohki

Rudi Valent

Masahiro Yamazaki


Feedback from the judges included the following:

Students have shown their creativity in creating their own speech while others effectively used the topics that they have learned in class. Overall, they had good control over pronunciation, intonation, tempo, and the way in which they presented on the day.

Overall, the students performed well, with some outstanding speeches and role-plays that allowed them to showcase their language skills.

There were some very creative scenarios in the partner section, with students really owning the dialogue and putting a lot of feeling into their delivery to make it realistic and authentic.

In the individual section, participants chose a range of topics with the most memorable being those that were entertaining and skillfully incorporating what they had learnt.  

There was a tendency (probably due to nerves) to speak too quickly, and some of the katakana words proving to be challenging. 

It was really heartening to see so many students who are passionate about Japanese, and who put so much effort into memorising their speeches and creating their own pieces.

What impressed me most of all was how clear and well pronounced the contestants’ Japanese was. It was a pleasure to hear, and no effort to try and understand. The speeches and dialogues were all quite interesting – I never cease to be amazed at the variety of things the students do with the Japanese they’ve got. However, there were a few who, though reciting exceptionally well, used Japanese way too advanced for their level. A little bit of obvious teacher intervention can be forgiven, because sometimes there’s no way around it, and you need to learn extra Japanese to fit the speech, however, when the whole speech is at too high a level, the audience are lost, and probably thinking that it’s not quite fair.


Thank you also to Eric Wegman for being the MC for the primary division and to Hamish Yule for being the MC for the secondary division. Thanks also to the members of the JLTAV committee who gave up their time to work at the speech contest, it is very much appreciated.

We are fortunate to have the ongoing support for the Junior Speech Competition from The Japan Foundation, Sydney. We greatly appreciate the financial support received from the Japan Foundation, Sydney, to assist in organising this year’s event.

Nathan Lane

President, JLTAV Inc. (Reg. No. A0024691U)


 Prize Winners

C1 Primary Year 5 to Year 6 (individual) First Dan Nguyen
      Second Hannah Weisinger
      Third Scarlet Tacey
C2 Primary Year 5 to Year 6 (pair) First Benji Green, Mitch Goldenberg
      Second Isabel Ng, Zoe Marsh
      Third Vanessa McKenzie, Hannah Greig
D Primary Year 5 to Year 6 Open First Kailie Bando
      Second Erika Nop
      Third Alex Marshman
E1 Secondary Years 7 and 8 (individual) First Sophia Mirenda-Allen
      Second Eliya Olnood
      Third Mifa Nguyen Mai
E2 Secondary Years 7 and 8 (pair) First Aysel Sapukotana, Alicia Lewis
      Second Charlotte Walsh, Elaine Shi
      Third Charlotte Smithett, Alexandra Kennedy
F1 Secondary Years 9 and 10 (individual) First Elliot Perez
      Second Chyann Fan
      Third Lah Se Wah
F2 Secondary Years 9 and 10 (pair) First Sarah Leong, Katherine Xin
      Second Thirani Munasinghe, Simrah Shaikh
      Third Jhothi Loganayagam, Tim Wells
G Secondary Open First Mirae Shim

The 2019 JLTAV Inc. Junior Speech Competition was supported by The Japan Foundation, Sydney


This event is aimed at students from Foundation to Year 10.

Location: Presentation College Windsor

Registration form

Registrations for the 2019 Junior Speech Competition is now open. Click here to register.

Registration closing date: Friday 9th August 2019

Entry fees: Prep to Year 4 $7.00 (inc. GST): Year 5 to Year 10 $10.00 (inc. GST)

Registration time

Registration opens half an hour before the competition time

Competition divisions & program

DivisionsSchool TypesYear Levels/CategoriesCompetition Starting Time
APrimaryFoundation to Year 2 (group)9.30 am
B1PrimaryYear 3 to Year 4 (individual)9.30 am
B2PrimaryYear 3 to Year 4 (group)9.30 am
C1PrimaryYear 5 to Year 6 (individual)10.00 am
C2PrimaryYear 5 to Year 6 (pair)10.00 am
DPrimaryYear 5 to Year 6 Open10.00 am
E1SecondaryYears 7 & 8 (individual)9.30 am
E2SecondaryYears 7 & 8 (pair)9.30 am
F1SecondaryYears 9 & 10 (individual)11.30 am
F2SecondaryYears 9 & 10 (pair)11.30 am
GSecondaryOpen11.30 am

Competition rules

Eligibility and Entry Fees

  • The competition consists of the above divisions.
  • This competition is open to primary and secondary school students up to and including Year 10.
  • Competitors who have lived in Japan for more than six consecutive months and/or whose first or second home language is Japanese must enter the Primary Year 5 to Year 6 Open or Secondary Open division as appropriate. Younger primary students may enter A, B1 or B2 divisions.
  • Competitors who are current or past students of a bilingual school must enter the open section either Primary or Secondary.
  • Competitors may only enter one category (i.e. a Competitor may not be entered in both the individual and pair categories).
  • The Competitor’s school, or one teacher in the Competitor’s school, must be a current financial member of the JLTAV.
  • An entry fee of $7.00 per Competitor for foundation to year 4, or $10.00 per Competitor for years 5 and up is to be forwarded to the JLTAV Inc with the entry form no later than Friday 9th August 2019.

Number of Entries

  • Prep to Year 2: A maximum of 2 groups of up to 4 students per school
  • Years 3-4: Up to 2 individual entries per school.
  • Years 5-6: Up to 2 pair entries per school.
  • Years 5-6: Up to 2 individual entries per school.
  • Years 5-6: One open entry
  • Each school is limited to one entry per division for Years 7 to 10 (a multi campus school is considered as a different school if they pay membership separately).
  • No substitution of students can occur once the entry is lodged with the JLTAV.
  • Entries are accepted on a “first come first served” basis.
  • In the event that a division has fewer than 6 entries, that division will be cancelled and the schools notified accordingly.

Competition procedure


  • The individual speeches and the pair dialogues must be the Competitors’ own work. The level of sophistication of Japanese must not exceed that which would generally be expected of a student at the stated year level. There is no advantage in assisting students to put together complex speeches as the level of difficulty is not a judging criterion.
  • Students must adhere to the time allocations. Exceeding the time allowed will result in loss of points.
  • Students should recite from memory – relying on notes will result in loss of points.
  • A “Confirmation of Application Acceptance Slip” showing names and divisions entered will be forwarded to schools after the closing date. Students must bring this slip with them to the competition.

Divisions A, B1 and B2

  • Group entries may consist of up to four participants.
  • There will be no set speech for these divisions.
  • As participation is the aim, any spoken Japanese performance will be accepted with a maximum time of 60 seconds for individuals and 90 seconds for groups.
  • Prizes for first, second and third will not be made in these divisions.
  • All participants will receive a certificate and small prize.

Divisions C1 to G

  • An individual division competitor will first recite the set passage for his/her division and then recite a speech of his/her own creation (maximum time of 60 seconds for their own speech, excludes set speech).
  • Pair division competitors will first recite the set conversation passage for his/her division and then together perform a dialogue of their own creation (maximum time of 90 second for their own speech, excludes set speech)
  • Competitors in the Open Primary Division recite the same set passage as the Primary Years 5 – 6 Competitors, then their own speech (a combined total of 90 seconds)
  • Competitors in the Open Secondary Division recite the same set passage as the Secondary Years 9 & 10 Competitors, then their own speech (a combined total of 90 seconds)

All divisions: costumes/props/uniform rules

  • Please note: No School Uniform! There will be no point deduction even if students wear their school uniform. However, in order to run a fair competition students are asked to wear neat casual clothing.
  • No costumes allowed, but minimal props permitted in divisions A, B1 and B2 only. For example, clothing accessories such as a hat, tail and glasses, which do not cover the face and obstruct students’ ability to talk. A small hand held prop is also permitted, such as a book or phone. The prop used should not interrupt the performance. Please note face paint is not permitted as well as props that will require cleaning up afterwards, for example food, rice, confetti and liquids are strictly not allowed.

Judging criteria

Competitors will be judged on the following:

  • Language (pronunciation, intonation, fluency, accuracy in grammar and use of words)
  • Originality and creativity
  • Presentation (delivery should be as Japanese students would deliver, NOT over acted)

Set passages

As websites cannot display ruby text clearly, please download the file from here


The 2019 JLTAV Junior Speech Competition was supported by the Japan Foundation, Sydney.