The Preparatory School Recitation Competition (Years 3 to 6)

The Recitation Competition is an annual competition where each student recites a memorised poem. Miss Cheryl Clifton, an exchange teacher from England in the late 1980’s, introduced the Recitation Competition to Trinity Grammar School Preparatory School as a parting gift to the Prep School.

The first round of the 2021 Recitation Competition will commence in Week One of Term Two. Each boy, in Years 3-6 will recite an own choice poem. This selected poem must be recited at each round.

Once selected, the poem does not change. The boys are encouraged to find a suitable poem over the holidays (or before if necessary). This poem should be learnt by heart, in preparation for recitation, initially in front of each boy’s classmates. Poems may be sourced from favourite books at home, poetry anthologies on home bookshelves, in local libraries, bookshops or online. A number of books have been carefully picked in the Library, from which the boys may choose a poem. If a poem is selected from the Library this must be done before the holidays. Leaving poem selection until after the holidays is too late.

We would like the boys in Years 3 and 4 to select poems which have at least eight lines. Should a longer poem be chosen, the poem must not take more than one and a half to two minutes.

For boys in Year 5 and 6, the time is most important, with four minutes being the limit for the poem.

A hard copy of the poem selected – with your son’s name at the top – should be received by your son’s class teacher as the First Round begins on Tuesday 20th April (Week 1 Term 2).

  1. The First Round takes place within the class, adjudicated by the class teacher.
  2. In Round Two, boys chosen from their class will compete against boys from the two other classes.
  3. In the Final Round, three finalists from each of the years will recite their chosen poem and then be given a compulsory poem to be memorised for the finals. This year the presentation of the compulsory poems will be presented just to the judges before they present their chosen poem to an audience of all boys in Years 3 to 6. 

Each boy will be judged on the degree of difficulty of the poem, his voice projection and clarity, his vocal, and where appropriate, facial expression and overall presentation. Poetry recitation is all about voice and face. 

The finals will be held in Week 5 on Monday 17th May at 8:45am in the Gym with guest adjudicators. 

Richard Lever | Deputy Head of the Preparatory School

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