Thursday, August 28, 2014

Meeting day is Wednesday again

Greetings fellows, 

Please take note, next meeting and all subsequent meetings will be held on Wednesday.

The place remains the same so far - Oleny Stepanivny 45.

Best regards, 
Lviv Toastmasters Club officers.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Debate session for three persons

Here's a story of one of Lviv Toastmasters meetings that was about to become a failure, but became a success instead.

Due to different reasons Lviv Toastmasters club is having a shortage of people at regular meetings at this time, and it just happened so that at our last meeting most of usual members couldn't come, so we ended up having only 3 persons.

It sounds kind of impossible to have a club meeting of 3 persons only - who'd be evaluating? What'll be the performances? Tabletopic speeches for 2 volunteers? Doesn't sound good.

But we at Lviv Toastmasters have found out that meetings with fewer people are actually a good occasion to have sessions that require a lot of time, like game session or debates. And, believe it or not, it turned out that 3 is just the perfect number for having very interesting extended debates session.

The rules were made on the spot and are actually quite simple: 

  • two of the members engage in a debate with each other on a subject given by the third member, for example: legalising light drugs, implementing mandatory submission of body organs of people deceased in hospitals to a government organ donation pool etc;
  • members cannot decide on their own whether they'd like to support or oppose the idea given in a subject - they draw a lot instead;
  • the third member is also acting as a timer and an evaluator, deciding who was proving his point in a best way and thus won the debates, and also speaking on what could've been done better by both participants;
  • the debates take part in 2 rounds, 3 minutes in first round and 2 minutes in second round, where debaters could address each other's points given in first round. The members are also given 3 minutes to prepare before first round. The one who is to support the idea given in a subject - starts first.

As one can see, these rules allow to have a debate session for 2 members in no less than 15 minutes: 3 minutes for preparation, 3+2 talk minutes for each debater and a couple of minutes for judge's evaluation.

Since we have 3 persons at the meeting, we have 3 debate sessions turns - one member took a judge role while other two were debating, then next member became a judge etc. So we have spent at least 45 minutes for the debate session.

The subjects for debates were also quite imaginative, and "sharp" enough to sparkle a serious debate:

  1. Light drugs (marijuana in particular) should be legalised;
  2. Organs of people who die in hospitals should be automatically donated to government organ transplantation pool, without any request for consent from relatives etc.
  3. A government facilities should be created for centralised food production that would make food production cheaper and accessible for most of average people, who wouldn't need to have own kitchens in their apartments and prepare food on their own.

Some of the initiatives mentioned in the subjects were not so easy to support or oppose by debaters, making the debate session more challenging and thus more fun.

As a result, we managed to have a fun and interesting meeting while having only 3 people present.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Lviv Toastmasters Club in 2-nd half of 2013

Greetings dear toastmasters,

As the eve of a new year's day it is the time to look back at a passing year 2013 and club achievements during the time. 

We are happy to report that second half year of 2013 showed some good progress in a club business - thanks to the dedication and support of our old and new members. We were also supported by local IT companies - a support for which we've very grateful.

A quick summary of our most notable achievements:
  • The club was invited to hold meetings at an EPAM company training centre. We express our gratitude to EPAM for the invitation and further support.
  • A new officers team has been elected, and now the club finally has a full officers team again.
  • Thanks to the enthusiasm of new officers the club has successfully held a local speech contest, or as we call it "Speech Championship". We congratulate Victor Medvedev on winning the contest.
  • Statistics for 2-nd half of year 2013 show several significant performance improvements: less meetings cancelled, more prepared speeches were delivered by more speakers, higher number of total participations on roles and higher number of participations per person (i.e. more activity from club members).

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Lemberg Toastmasters statistics for First half-year of 2013

Lemberg Toastmasters
First half-year of 2013 statistics

15 meetings 
(on average 5 meetings per 2 months)

3 prepared speeches by 3 speakers
(on average 0.33 speeches per meeting, 0.5 per month, 1 per speaker)
And also 6 mini-speeches by 4 speakers.

21 people were taking roles
Thank you all so much!

112 total roles participations
Including prepared speakers (~7.46 roles per meeting, ~5.33 participations by one person for half-year or ~0.88 per month)

14 viewpoints, 10 table topics, 11 games

Visiting Lemberg toastmasters for one month you'd go to 2 or 3 meetings, possibly hear a prepared speech and certainly hear 1 mini-speech, participate in around 2 viewpoints and table topics, two games, and take a role once. 

In general this half-year was a lot about impromptu speaking and games. Unfortunately, we’re still witnessing a steady decline in club attendance - from more than 200 role participations per half-year in 2011, to 153 in first half-year of 2012, to 137 in second half-year 2012, to 112 this half-year. 

But we had almost two times more games than previous half-year. 

We had three times fewer prepared speeches than previous half-year, but a slight increase in mini-speeches though.

We need to invite new people and increase attendance! This was our imperative for first half-year of 2013, and it remains thus for the second half-year.

Notable standouts
- Most versatile - Ihor Klyuka took 9 different roles!
Everyone else took 7 and less different roles during this half-year.

- Most active - Mykola Makhin took roles 18 times (one or more than one role each meeting).
Ihor Klyuka and Tetiana Povshyk come close with 15 and 14 participations respective.
Everyone else took 12 and less roles during this half-year.

Let's delve into details...

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Tasks for semi-humorous TableTopics

Greetings fellows.

Recently I have led some more (semi-)humorous TableTopics, and I'm ready to share some details on that - maybe they'll help you prepare your own TableTopics or re-use those at your club.

For the TableTopic every speaker had to imagine himself or herself as someone who occupies position of a City Mayor or possibly a leader of influential party or political fraction within City Council - any imaginary person that has the power to initiate some major changes within the city (I know that's not exactly realistic, but it's just fine for the sake of TableTopic - after all it had to have some humour in it so noone would get bored (-: ).

The speaker was given a task - a description of certain change that he/she as an influential figure was about to do to the city. He/she had to explain why this change is good for the city and why exactly this thing is his/her top priority for current time. Usually that change was something eccentric, so that the speaker would had to think how to present it in as something beneficial and relevant.

So, here are the tasks (descriptions of aforementioned hypothetical changes to city life) from two recent TableTopics:

TableTopic one:
  1. Turn city fountains into a free swimming pools with a hot water working all the year around.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lemberg Toastmasters statistics for Second half-year of 2012

Lemberg Toastmasters
Second half-year of 2012 statistics

18 meetings
(average 3 per month)

9 prepared speeches by 5 speakers
(average 0.5 per meeting, 1.5 per month, ~1.8 per speaker)
And also 5 mini-speeches by 5 speakers

22 people were taking roles
Thank you all so much!

137 total roles participations
Including prepared speakers
(~7.6 roles per meeting, ~6.2 participations by one person for half-year or ~1 per month)

15 viewpoints, 15 table topics, 6 games

Visiting Lemberg toastmasters for one month you'd go to 3 meetings, hear 1 or 2 different speeches (and 1 mini-speech), participate in around 2 or 3 viewpoints and table topics, one game, and take a role once.

In general this half-year was much more about impromptu speaking. Unfortunately, we’re witnessing a steady decline in club attendance - from more than 200 role participations per half-year in 2011, to 153 in first half-year of 2012, to 137 now. Still, we have a little bit more viewpoints and table-topics in this half-year than in previous one, and 3 more games - two times more! - than previous half-year. We have less than half of previous half-year count in prepared speeches though, which is also 5 times less prepared speeches per month than in 2011.
We need to invite new people and increase attendance! That’s our imperative for 2013, so bring friends and otherwise spread the word where possible (-;

Notable standouts
- Top Speaker - Orest Chopko with 4 speeches!
No one else delivered more than 2 speeches, in fact most prepared speakers delivered only 1 speech during this half-year.
- Most versatile - Alex Sheremet took 10 different roles!
Mykola Makhin comes close with 9, everyone else took 7 and less different roles during this half-year.

Now, the details...

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Crooked politicians - a humorous table topic

Greetings toastmasters,

Recently I've made a humorous table topic that seemed to worked pretty well in our club, so here I am sharing the idea with the world (-:

Every volunteer had a task of impersonating a crooked politician - in a humorous "tongue-in-cheek" way of course, nothing too political (which would be against the rules). The volunteer had a task that sounded like this: "You are a politician that did something very unethical or sometimes even criminal (explanation of the deed included). Now that new elections are coming how would you explain yourself to public to clean your name?"

The task had really made the volunteers to make an effort to think. And also as you can probably imagine some of the excuses our "guilty politicians" were making were hilarious (-: , so the table topic was both interesting and funny.

To share some fun here's a little teaser video:

There were seven tasks written in total, and I'm sharing the task texts here so you could use it in your club if you want to, or make your own based on those: