President 4 a Day Public Speaking Campaign
The campaign encourages learners to form their own opinions, to take responsibility for their own choices, to become aware of the consequences of their actions (#dontbecomeastatistic) and to find their voices to become agents of change. Young people face a number of challenges as they transition to life beyond school. Whether it is competing for a place at a tertiary institution or securing a job, or growing their own enterprises, it is essential that they possess critical thinking tools and master effective communication skills to become persuasive and authentic communicators. What would you do if you had the powers of the President for a single day? We provide learners an opportunity to identify those issues that affect them directly, at school and in their communities, to understand their root causes and a platform to advocate for effective solutions to address them.
Creating Agency & Pursuing Excellence
Young people the world over, are taking ownership of the social and economic problems that they have inherited caused by their parents’ generation. They are standing up and finding their voices (#standup&speakout) and co-determining solutions. Each participating school is encouraged to adopt public speaking as a learning and teaching tool, to encourage debate and discussion based on research and evidence. Participating schools are required to select 6 junior (grade 8 & 9) and 6 senior (grade 10, 11 and 12) advocates to compete in front of their own school community. These participants receive mentoring and coaching from members of Wits Moot Court Society and the Law Students Council. The school community then elects 2 junior and 2 senior advocates to represent them at the final event.
2019 President 4 a Day Campaign
The 2019 Campaign saw the introduction of the 'In-your-shoes' workshop and Haibo Njalo intervention play. Engaging education can be the most effective tool to break the bounds of inter-generational poverty. The ‘in-your-shoes’ workshop is a classroom based intervention designed to encourage learner participation in identifying the psycho-social issues that are systemic in their own communities. On being presented with a shoe, learners collaboratively construct the character’s narrative by drawing on their own stories. This device is used by the attending psychologists and actors to create engagement and to build profiles and stereotypes that are then played back at the learners through the ‘haibo njalo’ (wake up!) play. The momentum is used to create moments of introspection and when read together with the information poster series, learners are drawn to think about how the choices they make may perpetuate their own social conditions and inhibit their ambitions.
Images from the 2019 finals can be viewed here.