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Students reach finals of national Chinese speech competition

Angelu Santos, Year 10, used the opportunity to talk about her frustration as a Filipino living in Hong Kong unable to understand a word of Chinese, and how this affected her emotionally and socially. Her desire to learn the language was finally realised when she joined ACG Parnell College in Year 7.

Angelu Santos, Year 10, and Charles Yates, Year 8, have reached the finals of the 11th Chinese Bridge Speech Competition for New Zealand Secondary School Students.

Students were required to deliver a two-minute speech in Chinese on the topic of ‘Learn Chinese, Double Your World’, and perform a Chinese talent or skill.

A panel of Chinese culture and language experts judged the content, fluency, grammar, pronunciation and presentation of the students’ speeches.

Angelu, now in her third year of learning Chinese, used the opportunity to talk about her frustration as a Filipino living in Hong Kong unable to understand a word of Chinese, and how this affected her emotionally and socially. Her desire to learn the language was finally realised when she joined ACG Parnell College in Year 7.

Charles’ speech addressed his awe for the Chinese language, the uniqueness of Chinese characters and the fun he has had learning the language and culture over the past year. He talked about how learning Chinese enriched not just him, but his whole family.

ACG Parnell College Chinese teacher Josephine Chin, who teaches Year 8 Chinese, said Angelu and Charles initially wrote their text in ‘Chinglish’ and their hard work polishing and personalising it for the competition paid off.

“Their speeches were about their experiences, thoughts and feelings. They made a real effort memorising, practising and perfecting them,” she said.

Angelu performed Chinese calligraphy for her talent, while Charles, whose teacher is Diana Du, sung famous Chinese song, Mo Li Hua (Jasmine Flower).

The finals take place on 4 August.