Teacher Workshops


To help our teachers prepare their students for the Poetry Recitation Festival, we invited them to attend our annual teacher development workshop led by English language expert, Jennifer Haugh.

The workshop focussed on three main areas:

  • Introduction to procedures / Overview

  • Classroom Engagement

  • Presentation Etiquette

Poetry Recitation Resource


Here you’ll find activities and lesson plans
to help with our Poetry Recitation Contest

ESU Team structure and requisites:

  • Each school must have a coach who must be an adult in charge of training the team, representing the school, and taking responsibility for the school’s students.
  • All speakers must be regular pupils of the competing schools studying between 8th and 12th grade (8° a 4° medio).
  • Each team can have up to 12 students that can enter the preparation room for each debate
  • Only three of the ten students can speak in each debate. It is up to the coach or the team to decide which students will debate each time.
  • Each team will be composed of three speakers, one of whom speaks twice.


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A debate has two teams: an Affirmative (Proposition Team) and a Negative (Opposition Team). Each side consists of three speakers. The First Proposition speaker begins the debate and is then followed by the First Opposition speaker. This pattern is maintained for the second and third speakers of each team. The fourth speaker is a selected person from the team that will summarize their case.  Each speaker speaks for a set time, with a warning bell, to give them a little time, to sum up and finish, then a final bell.

Throughout the school year, each school forms its debate team members that meet regularly to practice debate techniques and research contemporary proposition topics.  Friendly debate matches with interested schools are organized on Saturday mornings.  These are meant to be an opportunity for students to practice their debate format and presentation skills.  Typically, throughout the months of October and November, an ESU Debate Tournament is organized with interested schools on Saturday mornings.  The final rounds are elimination matches that determine that year’s winning team.


Teacher Resourses



“Public speaking taught me that if you speak effectively, people will listen. That’s intoxicating”

Comedian and winner of the Public Speaking Competition 1979

It’s widely acknowledged that, for many of us, public speaking is right at the top of the list of things we fear most. But it doesn’t need to be like this. Above, you can watch impressionist, comedian and former ESU Public Speaking Competition winner Rory Bremner share his top tips; while we add a few of our own, below. 


  • Be prepared
    Researching your subject will give your speech a real boost. Be sure though, that your research supports and helps your ideas and arguments, rather than replacing your thoughts with ‘what the internet says’.
  • Use notes
    A few notes are hugely helpful, but nothing is more boring than someone reading a script. Just jot down key words, quotes, statistics and reminders for your planned style of delivery. Remember to write large enough to see easily.
  • Move about – but not too much
    Less is often more when it comes to movement. Gestures can be every effective in reinforcing your points, but avoid walking about or moving too much as this can be distracting.
  • Make eye contact
    Eye contact is crucial, as it makes your audience feel that you are talking directly to them and helps hold their attention. Try to look at every person individually at some point, particularly if there is tiered seating
  • Practice makes perfect
    Once you’re happy with your material, practice delivering it in different ways to see which works best. Don’t overdo it though, if you rehearse too much, you may lose some spontaneity or it may sound over-polished
  • Be yourself
    Let your own interests, expertise and personality shine through. Whatever your subject, this is your chance to express yourself, and an authentic performance is always the most compelling.
  • Nerves are natural
    Don’t worry if you feel a bit nervous in the lead-up to or during your speech. Everybody feels nerves and you can’t eliminate them completely, instead, you can learn to use the emotion to your advantage. Take lots of deep breaths, trust your preparation and use the extra energy to deliver your words – you’ll be great!

Take Part


Public speaking is an essential skill that students will need in both their academic and professional lives. Participating in the Public Speaking Competition helps students to structure their thoughts and ideas, while communicating with confidence. 

Every year, the competition brings together the best young speakers from across the country, with the winner going on to represent Chile at the International Public Speaking Competition in London. During the competition, students must prepare and deliver a speech based on a theme that is provided by ESU UK. The best 8 speakers then deliver an impromptu speech in a true test of their public speaking skills.

Now in its 16th version, the Public Speaking Competition is one of ESU Chile’s flagship events and involves over 60 students from nearly 30 schools. 


This year, 2021, the competition will be held virtually. The Chilean competition is scheduled for Semi-finals on Thursday 29th, April and Finals on April 30th.

Our Chilean winner will attend “The International Public Speaking Competition” scheduled on May 10th – 14th , 2021.

To participate in the 2021 Public Speaking Competition you need to register your school.

The theme for this year’s competition is “The world is bigger and smaller than it’s ever been”.

The ESU Chile website updates are ongoing for the current academic school year.

Please reach out to esu@esu.cl for any specific information that you require that is not yet found on our site.