For tenth grade English, we had Mrs. Wilson. She was a typical English teacher. Middle aged, a little portly, she sometimes wore glasses except when she got her picture taken and at the time I thought she was pretty old and about ready to retire. But in all actuality she was probably in her mid to late 40's. In the mind of a 10th grader, that is old. She did not always have control of the class. She was sometimes taken advantage of by some of the students.
She was the Speech / Forensics coach. I did not even know what the Forensic team was but was convinced to participate soon after the beginning of my Sophomore year. In case you do not know what the forensic team is, it is Debate, Speeches and Dramatic readings...You know English type things and of course there are district, regional and state competitions that we would be participating in.
I have my whole life been a talker...but then YOU all know that . Many times during school I would get in trouble because I could not keep my mouth shut. Almost all my report cards said "She talks too much!" So what better way to harness this issue than to join the speech club! There were five sophomore girls who joined...... We would get extra credit, we could do much of the prep work for the competition during English class as long as we kept up with our regular school work. And through our remaining years of high school, there would be continuing benefits to us that we would find out later. The brownie points for being involved were great and what else did we have to do. I was too young to date as far as my parents were concerned but old enough to work in my Dad's Dime store if I did not have a school activity I needed to attend, like Forensic practice.
|Forensic / Debate Team 1970-1971|
Mrs Wilson recruited us for the category that she called, " Multiple Reading". SO what is a "Multiple Reading" you ask?? It is like voice overs used in animated movies without the movie! A group of people tell a story, each person becomes the character or characters that they are assigned to play. You might even call it storytelling but it must be a team effort. As I recall, we were given the option to pick a piece of known children's literature. I can not remember if the category was provided for us by the region or district or if Mrs Wilson picked it for us. There were three groups in our team, one from the Senior class, Junior Class and then us, the Sophomores. The Senior group did a Charlie Brown reading. I can not remember what the Juniors did. We did "Pooh Meets the Heffalump". Our team consisted of Jean Brinker, Diane Rankin, Carol Schmucker, Laraine Crake and me. I was assign the role of Piglet, Loraine was Eeyore, Jean was the Narrator, Diane was Pooh and Carol was the Christoper Robin.....
When it came time for the nine school Blue Water League Competition, our Imlay City Team was ready. I had never participated in a live event. We took the bus to a big school auditorium in Flint. You sat watching as all the other school / groups performed. The longer you sat there the more nervous you got. While I was a talker in school, I did not like speaking by myself or with a group in front of an audience. We were all very scared. Our turn was near the end of the event. Our reading, by nature, had a bit of a rhythm to it, it started off slow just like Pooh who just ambles along and builds up to this frenzied pace as Piglet believes he has discovered the elusive, never seen before, Heffalump! After a few seconds of jitters, we all settled into our roles and gave our best performance ever. Over all, Imlay City took the 3rd place trophy in the competition, The team trophy is for the school and all its forensic teams combined scores...Debate, Speeches, Dramatic reading, Humorous reading, Multiple reading, Oratory.
Our Sophomore team took first place in the Multiple reading category and advanced to the fourth round of the March 1970 Blue Water Competition beating our Senior team who came in at third place. We moved on to the District level where we won Second place in the 10 school Blue Water District level which took place in fall of 1971.
I included the year book page for the Speech / Forensic team. I found it interesting that they talked about the Senior and Junior teams before they talked about the first place winning Sophomore team. They have my name spelled wrong in part of the article but right in the second part. They list Kathy Irish as a team member for the second half of the year which I do not remember and then added Jean Brinker back in as if there were six of us. Not sure who supplied the facts for this page. I wish I had a recording of one of our practice sessions. It would be fun to listen to all these years later...
So there you have it...I guess that the years of "talking too much" did pay off in the end.. Hope you enjoyed this high school shared memory..