You Speak Now
YSN 2021 Competition Information
Are you a student who loves to motivate and inspire others? Do you have a powerful message or personal story? Are you ready for the world to hear your voice? If so, then You Speak Now is for you!
You Speak Now is a premier youth speaking competition for students in middle school and high school. YSN provides an opportunity for talented speakers to go heart to heart and share their passion on stage to win a fantastic prize package and uplift the audience.
The goal of YSN is to have students share personal, motivational, and inspirational messages that move and empower people within the theme.
What’s in it for the YSN contestants?
- Grand Prize
- Prize Package
- Exposure to experienced professionals
- Creative Expression
- The thrill of competition
- Opportunity to connect with other passionate student speakers
YSN Contest Details:
- 10 Speakers for each division – Middle School (6th-8th) and High School (9th-12th)
- 4-6 minutes originally prepared speech on all three themes
- Contestants are scored out of 100 points in each round by all three YSN judges. The top six scorers from the 1st round will advance. The top three from the 2nd round will advance to the championship. In the championship, the three contestants will give their 4-6-minute prepared speech and a 3-minute impromptu speech. The contestant with the highest total score in the final round wins the YSN Championship.
Criteria to compete in YSN:
- Middle School (must currently be in 6th-8th grade), High School (must currently be in 9th-12th grade)
- Provide a headshot, a video explaining why you would be a good selection for YSN (no longer than 2 minutes), and fill out the registration form.
- Compliance to the timing and format of the event
- Good to above-average speaking skills
- $50 registration fee – $150 entry fee (only if you are selected as one of the top 10)
- Mandatory meeting for the contestants prior to the event
- 4-6 minutes of originally prepared speeches on all three themes
YSN JUDGING CRITERIA – Inspirational Speech (100 points)
Storytelling (20 pts) – YSN Judge 1
• Powerful personal story
• Vivid and descriptive
• Relevant learnings from the story
Emotional Connection (20 pts) – YSN Judge 1
• Inspiring and Impactful
• Resonates, passionate, heart touching
• Ability to connect the audience emotionally to their speech
Universal Message (15 pts) – YSN Judge 1
• Powerful and meaningful message
• Strong moral to the story
• Great learnings
• Message worth sharing
Stage Presence (15 pts) – YSN Judge 2
• Charisma, confidence, star power
• Commands and holds the attention
• Speaks powerfully
• Embodies their message
Presentation (10 pts) – YSN Judge 2
• Vocal variety
• Body Language and performance
• Powerful and commanding
Uniqueness (10 pts) – YSN Judge 3
• The “It” Factor
Language (10 pts) – YSN Judge 3
• Compelling use of language
• Powerful word selection
Timing Criteria (4-6 minutes)
Green at 4 minutes
Yellow at 5 minutes
Red at 6 minutes
Points Loss: Speakers begin losing points at 6:31, at the rate of 1 point for every part of 3 seconds that they go over.
A Time To Speak
A Time To Speak is a team speaking festival during which middle schools, high schools, and community organizations will have the opportunity to compete in up to five rounds.
Speakers on the middle school teams must be in 6th-8th and grades 9th-12th for the high school teams. Speakers can only participate in their school team or a community organization team. Each team registering must have at least one coach over the age of 18, a minimum of four speakers, and may enter up to 10 speakers on a team. The team registration fee for the ATTS Middle School Division is $250 and $350 for the ATTS High School Division.
*ATTS will be compromised of the first 16 teams to register for each division.
ATTS takes place over five rounds. Each team gets two Preliminary Bouts in March. The Quarterfinals and Semifinals will take place in April. The middle school and high school division team championships will be held in May. Special events will be held throughout the competition where coaches and speakers can participate.
In the Preliminary bouts, each team must have four different speakers present. All speeches must be five minutes or less and will receive a score out of 100. After the Preliminary Bouts, the 12 top-scoring teams out of 16 will advance to the Quarterfinals; the 8 top-scoring teams will advance to the Semifinals, and the 4 top-scoring will advance to the Championship.
*The deadline to enter your school or community organization into the 2021 ATTS Competition is January 10, 2021. We will announce the official dates of each round at this time.
*ATTS Middle School Division Championship: May 2021
*ATTS High School Division Championship: May 2021
WHAT YSN DOES FOR MIDDLE SCHOOLS, HIGH SCHOOLS, COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES, COMMUNITY PARTNERS, AND YOUTH ORGANIZATIONS:
WORKSHOP – One hour-long workshop with Coach Jason and his team. Students can expect a process of creative self-discovery and identity-building, rooted in the pedagogy of You Speak Now.
ASSEMBLY – A one-hour all-school assembly that energizes and ignites students around the principles and practices of You Speak Now. School assemblies feature dynamic messages and performances from Coach Jason and his team along with opportunities for students to showcase their talents.
KEYNOTE – A keynote-style speech that outlines the approach of You Speak Now to radical inclusion, artistic-based organizing principles, and the insistence that young people’s stories are ones that deserve to be heard.
YOU SPEAK NOW ACADEMY – Coach Jason and his team work with educators and staff to provide four 45-60-minute presentations that include an in-school PD session with educators upon completion of the curriculum. The purpose of YSN Academy is to utilize tools and strategies that will educate and empower students to discover their voice, become better communicators, and understand the power in their personal stories.