Welcome to the Pine Island Speech Team page!

Below you can find information about our season and a brief description of each category students may compete in. We are members of the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) as well as the National Speech & Debate Association (NSDA).

For more information contact:
Head Coach: Mr. Jeffrey
Assistant Coach: Mr. Boman

2023-2024 Speech Season

Find information for our current season below.

Information Meeting

November, 14, 3:30 pm - Choir Room (old art room across from the fitness center)


  • Team and individual practices weekly from January through March
    • Individuals will schedule at least one, 20-minute individual practice each week
  • Work with a coach to pick out a script by Friday, Dec. 22

Season Schedule

Thursday, Feb. 1 - Concessions PIHS 5 pm
Saturday, Feb. 10 - John Marshall
Saturday, Feb. 17 - Wabasha-Kellogg
Saturday, Feb. 24 - Red Wing
Saturday, Mar. 2 - Chatfield
Saturday, Mar. 9 - Owatonna
Monday, Mar. 11 - HVL Conference, Kasson-Mantorville
Monday, Apr. 8 - MSHSL Subsection Tournament, Winona Cotter
Saturday, Apr. 13 - MSHSL Section Tournament, Rochester Century (qualifiers)
Friday, Apr. 19 - MSHSL State Tournament, Shakopee (qualifiers)
*Competitions may change based on team availability


The following categories describe the events in which our members can compete. Categories range from those that are more theatrical in nature to those that are more traditional. They are broadly divided into events in which students use a text written by someone else, a text written by themselves, or come up with their own speech on the spot.

Self-Written Speaking Events

Creative Expression - An interpretation event in which students perform original pieces.  Typically, competitors write and perform a piece utilizing their personal strengths, be it a story about an illness or a confession of awkwardness. These pieces can be either dramatic or humorous.

Great Speeches - In this event, the competitor performs parts of a famous speech, explaining why the speech is considered great through the lens of a rhetorical model. This event provides particular emphasis on insight and research.

Informative Speaking - Informative speeches quite simply inform others about a variety of different topics. The eight-minute long speech can feature visual aids to further drive home a certain concept. Examples of topics include 3D printing, bamboo, coffee, paper, silk, and wood.

Original Oratory - Competitors deliver a ten-minute speech persuading their audience to take action against, or simply care about a problem facing our society. Oratory speeches can combine humor, as well as depressing or uplifting examples or stories to win over the audience.

Scripted Speaking Events

Dramatic Interpretation - Drama is an event in which the competitors must interpret a serious piece. Dramas may come from movie, play, radio, or television scripts. Competitors need to fully understand and relay their character and his or her emotions to the audience. 

Duo Interpretation - Duo is the only event in which two competitors must work together to perform a piece. Different rules also apply such as, the performers are not allowed to look at or touch each other.  Also seeing as Duo can be either dramatic or humorous, you can see a wide variety of pieces.

Humorous Interpretation - This event requires competitors to take on the different physical and personality traits of several different characters. The selection can be taken from virtually any published source.

Poetry - Competitors in this event perform either a single poem or a excerpts from multiple poems that share an overall theme. Competitors in this category discover how to read, perform, and effectively relay the deeper meaning of the poetry to the audience.

Prose - Prose is an event in which contestants choose a serious excerpt from a novel or short story. They interpret the piece through vocal and physical expression. Much like Dramatic Interp, successful Prose competitors embody the characters' emotions.

Extemporaneous Speaking Events

Discussion - In this event, the competition focuses on the contestants ability to work in a group setting in order to accomplish a collaborative task. Critical thinking as well as cooperation are fundamental to succeeding.

Extemporaneous Reading - This is a draw event, meaning that 30 minutes before their round, competitors randomly draw a selection from a preselected book of poetry or prose. The competitor then uses that 30 minutes to prepare an introduction for the selection and the performance of the selection itself.

Extemporaneous Speaking - In Extemporaneous Speaking, competitors have 30 minutes to draw, prepare, and memorize a seven-minute speech on a current events topic. The competitor is expected to answer the question and defend their answer using published sources like newspapers, magazines, and journals. Examples of questions competitors may draw include "What steps must European nations take to address the Eurozone's financial crisis?" and "Should the federal government increase financial investment in renewable energy in the US?"

Storytelling - At the beginning of the season, competitors receive 15 fairy tales and prepare introductions and their own versions of those fairy tales for competition. 30 minutes prior to each round, they draw which of the 15 to perform that round and use that 30 minutes to rehearse. Many create their own personal style by adding voices, character pops, punny jokes, and witty remarks.

Visit the Speech section on the MSHSL website for complete rules and descriptions of categories.