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Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 13th May, 2019

Here comes summer

Tonight Elizabeth was our toastmaster, she did a brilliant job from start to finish, tenaciously welcoming everyone and making sure instructions were clear to our 2 guests of the evening.  Before the break she encouraged everyone to “Chat to people!”

Steven was our Sergeant at Arms for the evening, he spoke clearly, threw in a bit of his usual dry humour and did an accurate job of keeping the meeting running to time. This skill came in handy for Steven tonight as he also confidently covered the role of Timekeeper. He excellently delivered two roles without hesitation, thanks for stepping in, Steven!

The theme for the evening was ‘Here comes Summer’, which I felt was very apt after all the sunny weather we’ve had recently – gets people in the mood for summer.

The Grammarian, Susie, delivered her role with her usual enthusiastic and smiley manner. She explained her role well and maintained confidence and poise. The word of the day was “tenacious”, which was used quite a lot by our members, including some multiple uses in one sentence throughout the evening! Susie reminded us all of the word at the beginning of the second half, stepping in front of the lectern and showing the word printed off on the A4 page, which I found useful. Her feedback at the end was thorough – she picked out different examples of language used and complimented the members.

Our Ah Counter of the evening was Arthur who encouraged us to avoid using filler words. He reviewed the ahs/ums usage towards the end of the meeting, telling us that there were quite a few erm/so combinations tonight. One of his recommends to Stephanie was “use the pauses to keep the flow going”. He got a big laugh from the floor when telling Andy about his use of “a couple of buts”.

This evening we did something a little differently. Andy enthusiastically delivered his speech from entitled “five minute guide” all about self-defence. Stephanie was Andy’s speech evaluator and she did a great job of introducing Andy before his speech, she read out his speech objectives and reminded everyone to “pay attention, enjoy the speech and make notes”.

Instead of just the ordinary one evaluation, Lianna then led a session asking all members to publicly feedback their thoughts on his speech. She encouraged people to get involved, leading from example with “I’ll start off”, and then proceeding to give Andy a bit of positive feedback. She listened very intently to everyone’s points and the conclusion was excellently delivered. I thought this was a great way to feedback and also gave new members fresh ideas of ways to evaluate a speech.

Maria also delivered speech 6 from the level 2 pathways “Team Collaboration” manual, the purpose of this project is to demonstrate your ability to listen to what others say. She did an excellent job giving the audience a TableTopics summary. She also led the TableTopics after the break and ensured she met her objectives of listening to the speakers and feeding back well.

Jon was the table topics evaluator and did a grand job of giving every speaker a commend and recommend. His body language was really good, he was humorous, it was just a shame he went a little over time.

Andy brought the meeting home with the awards for the night. A few congratulations are in order.

One to Jon for winning 3rd place at District 71 TableTopics competition and also to Steven for completing his Competent Communication manual. We are very proud at Doncaster Speakers for the dedication and commitment of our members.

The award winners for best in category were:

Becky for Best TableTopics.

Jon for Best Evaluator.

Report by Bridget
(General Evaluator)

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Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 22nd October, 2018

Another great evening at Doncaster Speakers.. The evening started with a clear introduction

from Mwada has Sergeant at Arms and Andy has Toastmaster.

Andy introduced Toastmaster International confidently and told us about the programme he referred to Toastmasters as an educational and fun session.

Steve was Timekeeper, he carried out his role with humour. Bridget was Grammarian and jumped into the role with confidence and clear expectations of what she wanted to see in her role.  Shane was Ah Counter and told us the importance of his role and that instead of ah and ums we should just ‘push the pause button’.

Our first speaker of the evening was Elizabeth she gave a confident speech on glass blowing and her passion for the subject shone through on this speech. Maria was her evaluator and praised Elizabeth for completing her first pathways modules.

Our second speaker was Jean and has always she gave us a humorous speech with food for thought about world population. Jon gave an excellent evaluation of Jean’s speech.

Bridget and Lianna delivered an Educational slot their recent visit to Sheffield Speakers and gave us a few suggestions on how to make our club even better.

The second half of the evening was filled with evaluations and Table Topics. Stephanie took on the role of Table Topic Master and gave us another fun session. Arthur gave a thoughtful and clear evaluation of all speakers that spoke.

The evening was wrapped up by Lianna giving the General Evaluator report and Andy finished off the evening. Another successful evening, looking forward to the next meeting Monday 12th November.

The award winners for best in category were:

Jean Stewart for Best Speaker.

John  for Best TableTopics.

Jon Carvell for Best Evaluator.

Report by Lianna Cairns (General Evaluator)

Our next meeting is Monday 12th November 2018 at 7pm start at the Regent Hotel and, as always, guests are welcome.

Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 8th October, 2018

The meeting tonight had a great vibe with an excellent turn out and 3 lovely guests.

It was Sandie’s first time as SAA and she got us off to a good start by taking the gavel with gusto, giving the usual 1 min warning and explaining in a clear and concise way of all the things we should be aware of, such as where the fire escape door was, phones off etc. Sandie then gave our ToastMaster of the evening Lianna a very warm welcome.

Lianna has now lots of experience as TM & reminded us from the off how all the dedicated roles taken at the meetings will help with our leadership skills. Tonight’s theme was “Happiness” and Lianna asked us all to try and start our day with giving at least 3 smiles a day to people we meet and even the odd ” how do” and as we travel down our given path we should endeavour to “enjoy the journey”.

Our Timekeeper this evening was Janet. It was Janet’s first role tonight she and reminded us of the importance of keeping to times and how this would be achieved. Janet obviously enjoyed this task and I’m sure this will lead to taking on many other roles.

Stephanie as Grammarian is always a joy to see and hear. Stephanie picks up on phrases, nuances and general grammar that many of us miss. The word of the day was Elation/Elated and it was interesting to see this incorporated into many speeches.

The Ah counter role was taken by Mwada and explained that she would be watching out carefully  for all those irritating  filler words that we all sometimes use. It is really great to see how infrequent certain ah’s and so’s are being used as we all gain more confidence with each passing meeting.

The Toastmaster then introduced the 2 evaluators. First was Elizabeth who was evaluating  Laura’s speech “Nuts & Crackers” which was a very moving and thought provoking reminder of the problems of mental health. Second was Steven who was evaluating Andy speech “Random” . Andy delivered this well with upbeat ” good times” approach to life which will defeat the ” bad times” any day.

Maria kindly stepped up to the plate with an educational session and welcomed our guests. Maria reminded us about the last session a few weeks ago and of the the hard work involved in becoming a Pathways champion.

After the votes for best speaker the Toastmaster ended the first half for a well earned 15 minute break.

Sandie then called the meeting to order and introduced the Toastmaster back to the lecturn. As TM Lianna kept the meeting running smoothly with some great humour thrown in before asking the Grammarian to remind us of the word of the day and give us all an update on how we were all performing.

The General Evaluator was up next and explained the importance of evaluations and how they can be a positive influence to all the speakers.

Elizabeth and Steven then came forward  and each gave an honest and valuable assessment of Laura and Andy’s speeches.

Table Topics will always be one of the most popular if not a little terrifying part of the night and this was no exception with Bridget asking 6 people including Jon and Susie ( guests ) the questions of Dr Seuss. These were really thought provoking with “why fit in when you were born to stand out” and “to the world you may be one person but to one person you may be the world”

It was great to have Michael back tonight and as table topic evaluator he gave all the contestants sincere & honest feedback.

With the end of the night looming our TM Lianna asked for reports from the ah counter, grammarian , timekeeper & general evaluator before a short Q&A session. Lianna handed over to Andy to ask for any guest feedback . This was given by all 3 guests tonight who said they had thoroughly enjoyed it. Andy finished off a brilliant night by handing out the awards.

The award winners for best in category were:

Andy Howell for Best Speaker.
Elizabeth Mead for Best TableTopics.
Stephanie Bisby for Best Evaluator.

Report by Arthur Fenn (General Evaluator)

Our next meeting is Monday 22nd October 2018 at 7pm start at the Regent Hotel and, as always, guests are welcome.

Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 20th August, 2018

For a distinguished Toastmasters club with a membership in the high 30s, this was an extraordinary night never witnessed previously by most of its membership. For unlike a typical buoyant turnout, only 6 members could attend this second meeting in the holiday month of August.

However, just like life and public speaking may throw up unforeseen challenges, all saw the prospect for extra practice as an opportunity and got stuck right in. Our newest member Sandie, bravely stretched herself and took on the role of Grammarian. The more experienced members took on two roles to compliment her move – with Arthur as Toastmaster and Table Topics Master, Steve as Timekeeper and Speech Evaluator, Andy as Ah Counter and Speech Evaluator, Andrew as Speaker and Table Topics Evaluator and Maria as Sergeant at Arms and Speaker. Instead of the full General Evaluator feedback of a normal meeting towards the end, all attendees gave Sandie verbal feedback with added focus instead.

Sandie did a superb job in her first Grammarian role, highlighting such vivid gems as “constructed a sentence to paint a picture” and setting the word of the day as “procrastination”. Andy as Ah Counter challenged all to use pauses and avoid the use of so’s (at the start of a sentence) and um’s. Andrew holds the most competition wins, but this evening he launched into the new Pathways programme with his Icebreaker speech “Tales From the Inside” that focused on his Toastmasters journey. His Speech Evaluator Andy, reminded us that Andrew “stayed for the challenge, stayed for the change”. Maria gave her ‘Evaluation and Feedback’ project second speech aiming to demonstrate applied feedback and gave a different spin to her original speech about new digital technologies. Her Evaluator was Steve, who had identified initial strengths and suggested improvements in his thorough approach that was appreciated and proved effective.

Everyone sharpened their concentration and mobility to keep pace with the various roles they played. Plus every person got the opportunity to take part in Table Topics. This impromptu short speeches session hovers on the edge of whacky at times, and this time Arthur brought politics into the equation. He stated that he was Prime Minister, had sacked his cabinet and gave each speaker a nominated Minister portfolio to solve the countries problems. As I said, it was an extraordinary meeting.

The award winners for best in category were:

Andrew Miller for Best Speaker.
Andy Howell for Best TableTopics.
Andrew Miller for Best Evaluator.

Report by Maria Orlovic (in lieu of a General Evaluator)

Our next meeting is Monday 10th September 2018 at 7pm start at the Regent Hotel and, as always, guests are welcome.

Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 16th July, 2018

Another wonderful evening at Doncaster Speakers, we had some new faces and lots of new members attend. The evening started with a friendly and warm introduction from Elizabeth Mead as Sergeant at Arms and Andrew Howell as Toastmaster.

Andrew introduced Toastmasters International and his theme was ‘Choices’ confidently and told us about the changes to the evening’s agenda.

Mwada Lawan was Timekeeper, she introduced her role and what she would be doing for the evening. Steven was Grammarian and introduced the word of the day ‘quintessential’.  Steve Bisby entertained us with his humour and gave us a detailed evaluation at the end. Janet Goodband was Ah Counter, she explained her role confidently and gave feedback to everyone about their filler words.

Our only speaker for the night was Zoe Robinson with a speech entitled ‘Why don’t Zebras get ulcers’, she gave a confident speech which has us all enthralled from start to finish. Arthur Fenn evaluated her speech in a positive way and showed how well he had been listening to the speech.

Andrew Howell delivered an educational slot entitled ‘Evaluation – How I grow in Toastmasters’ this was an interactive session with audience participation which we all benefited from.

The second half of the evening was filled with evaluations and Table Topics. Lianna Cairns took on the role of Table Topic Master and gave us another fun session. Maria Orlovic delivered a detailed evaluation of Table Topics and gave feedback to all speakers.

The evening was wrapped up by Lianna Cairns giving the General Evaluator report and our new president Andrew Howell finished off the evening. Another successful evening, looking forward to the next meeting.

The award winners for best in category were:

  • Zoe Robinson for Best Speaker.
  • Zoe Robinson for Best TableTopics.
  • Arthur Fenn for Best Evaluator.

Report by Lianna Cairns (General Evaluator) Our next meeting is Monday 23th July 2018 at 7pm start at the Regent Hotel and, as always, guests are welcome.

Doncaster Speakers Meeting Report Monday 12th February 2018

Upon entering the room, I was greeted by the hustle and bustle of excited Toastmasters and several guests.

Debra Kershaw – the club’s VP Membership, Maria Orlovic and Andrew Miller were hard at work to ensure that guests had signed the guest book and all had seats. By 7pm when the meeting started, there was standing room only!

The night was comprised of three speeches from the Traditional Toastmasters program, and one educational session led by Accredited Speaker and Pathways Guide, Clare Crowther.

Lianna Cairns’ speech “Discovering New Zealand” drew cheers from the audience when she pointed out that it was a Yorkshire man who eventually gained the indigenous Polynesians’ trust. Arthur Fenn praised Lianna’s word choice, use of the floor and pacing, recommending that she vary her hand gestures to avoid clasping her hands.

Steve Bisby earned the award of Best Speaker for his speech “The Steve Slam,” which entertained the audience with several wardrobe changes along with a vivid and humorous slide show. Sarah Saxelby earned Best Evaluator for her evaluation, which was entertaining in its own right. She praised Steve’s physicality during the speech but added a note of caution not to turn his back on the audience when referencing the slides.

Andy Howell demonstrated advanced skills in his speech “A Trip Down Memory Lane,” Bridgett Pearson praised how he combined body language, gestures and vivid imagery in his storytelling to connect with the audience. Her recommendations included referencing the title within the speech itself.

Clare Crowther and Tina Norbury offered more insight into the what, when and how of the new educational system, Pathways. Members and guests alike were interested to hear what Pathways has in store, and how this would change the educational experience.

As Toastmaster for the evening, Shane Lukas led us through the meeting expertly. His introductions and transitions were welcoming and seemed effortless. He demonstrated how a Toastmaster can lead with a calm and confident presence.

Stefan Glova made his debut as Table Topics Master.  His welcoming and cheerful smile made speakers feel at ease, as they answered deceptively simple but challenging questions about a variety of service experiences. Stephanie Bisby evaluated the 8 table topics participants expertly.

Jean Stewart kept us laughing in her dual roles as Timekeeper and Grammarian, while still explaining the roles simply for the benefit of guests.

In the role of Ah-Counter, Jon Carvell kept the humour coming with artful use of pauses and repetition.

The meeting closed with a Thank You from Angela Scott, Division E Director, and acknowledgement of all that Doncasters Speakers have achieved so far this year to build a vibrant club. President Shane Lukas accepted the ribbons the club had earned for the Dues Renewal contest in September on behalf of the committee, and then announced that meeting’s winners were:

  • Best Speaker: Steve Bisby
  • Best Evaluator: Sarah Saxelby
  • Best Table Topics: John Carvell

Report by Angela Scott, General Evaluator


Our next meeting is Monday 26th February 2018

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