(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The second edition of Listen Up competition began at Indian School Muscat (ISM) on Monday. Organised by Muscat Daily, Listen Up aims to groom and hone public speaking among the students of various schools in Oman.
The competition, which has three categories - junior (8 to 10 years), middle (11 to 14 years) and senior (15 to 18 years) “ sees students competing with their peers on both prepared and unprepared topics under a stipulated time limit.
Fifteen students (five from each category) took to the stage to speak on their respective topics in a auditorium packed with a crowd of more than 300 students and staff members.
A majority ofthe students from the junior group including Anushka Sen, Liza Andrea D'sa and Zaarah Fatima Syed spoke on the prepared topic If I had RO1mn'. While most of the students wanted to spend the amount on underprivileged by building schools and hospitals, Zaarah desired to visit Disneyland, Eiffel Tower and the Great Wall of China.
The middle group spoke on a diverse range of topics like Reality shows are platforms to success', It makes me angry when' and Choosing friends is the most important decision'.
While Deeya Deep Anand spoke about how the recent New Delhi rape case makes her angry, Eshan Vaidya said that wastage of water in Oman is the reason that makes him angry.
Freedom of speech', Violence in the media' and Are first impressions important?' were some of the topics that the seniors spoke on.
Deep Samuel Wilson, the assistant vice-principal of ISM said, ''Public speaking is a very essential part in the success of a person. In this competitive world, one is not judged by the certificates or marks but by his ability on public speaking. This competition is a wonderful opportunity to hone public speaking skills among students.''
The competition picked up pace when students were asked to speak on unprepared topics. They were given 30 seconds to prepare for the topic and they spoke on the subject with absolute confidence. Ankita Sadar Joshi, a winner from the senior category who spoke on the unprepared topic If I could be' said, ''If there is a person that I wish to be, it would be Anne Frank. The girl had the courage to document the hardships faced by her and her family during the Nazi reign with honesty in her diary.''
Liza Andrea D'sa and Vidya Venkataram emerged winners in junior and middle categories respectively. On her victory, Vidya said, ''I am really surprised that I spoke so well and won the contest. There were other students who were equally good. I have been practising the topic every day for the past two weeks. My mother helped me with the preparations.''
Tahiya al Daghaishi, one of the judges and an English language teacher at the Oman Tourism College (Seeb) said, ''I am really surprised with the level of English language skills among these students of ISM. We gave them marks for their diction,