Literary team heads to region competition

Senior Varnika Guiduri can run a mile in under seven minutes in a cross country competition. But, on March 11, the important question is going to be whether Varnika can write a winning essay in under 45 minutes.

Varnika will represent her school in the regional literary meet on March 11 at Deerfield-Windsor in Albany under the analytical essay category.

“I made a literary team back in my sophomore year and enjoyed not only my event for essay writing but also watching others compete in the dramatic or vocal performances, which are really amazing,” Varnika said. “The competition hosts a number of events so that day we spend competing is tense but fun.”

There are five schools that Stratford’s Literary team will be competing against at Regionals. The state literary team competition will happen eight days after regionals on Saturday, March 19.

At Stratford, the Literary Team is a competitive group of high school students that competes with other schools in the district.

The four literary coaches at Stratford are Mr. Stephen O’Hara, who teaches extemporaneous speaking, Mrs. Michelle Fleming, who teaches personal, analytical, and argumentative essays, Ms. Sylvia Haynie, who teaches theater duo, comedic, and dramatic, and Mrs. Monica Fenimore, who teaches music in boys and girls solo, as well as boys quartet and girls trio.

Junior Anna Wangerin is competing in the domestic extemporaneous speaker competition.

“I really enjoy public speaking and Model UN.” Anna Wangerin said. “Extemporaneous speaking is very similar to both of those things, so I thought it would be a good way to hone my public speaking skills.”

Ms. Haynie has been a Literary Team coach since 1993. “I have seen quite a few students go on to state during my time as a literary coach,” she said.