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SLD Outreach

Communication and Performance Examination (CAPE)

Elaine Webster

Scottish Language Dictionaries' Outreach and Education Officer Elaine Webster and Director Dr. Chris Robinson were delighted to be invited to adjudicate performances at the Communication and Performance Examination (CAPE) Scotland's Festival of the Spoken Word, in Dundee on 18th and 19th March. The enthusiasm of Liz Glenn, the director of CAPE, and the CAPE committee ensured that there was a large entry to the competition and that the event ran smoothly.

Pupils from primary and secondary schools in the Dundee, Perth and Angus areas took part as well as individual entrants. They competed in public speaking and storytelling as well as verse recitation. The winner of each section was awarded a beautiful silver cup, with a special award of 'The Courier Cup' for an overall winner. The standard of entry was exceptionally high and the self-assurance of the youngsters was a delight to see. Relatives and teachers came to support the event. It was very difficult to judge the overall winner, but 'The Courier Cup' was finally awarded to six-year-old Rayyan Khan who attends St. Joseph's Primary School in Dundee. He had scored over ninety points in more than one category.

The Scots verse categories were popular and demonstrated good understanding of the work of Burns, Soutar and Stevenson as well as enjoyment of traditional ghostly tales and humorous verse in Scots. The competitors of all ages delighted the audience with clear articulation and confident performances in Scots. The public speaking exercises covered projects which included Scottish history. Teachers and parents attending enthused about the importance of the spoken word and the life-skills these children are developing, including awareness of Scots in performance.

Scottish Language Dictionaries were delighted to be given this opportunity to share information about their work with a new audience. Bookmarks and postcards encouraged lively informal discussion about Scots. St Marnock's Church in Fowlis Easter village is a stunning venue for the CAPE competition which heightened the sense of occasion for all participants.