WHY Singapore Performing Arts Festival & Fringe event this Saturday – 9 April 2022


AM SESSION  (Morning)

  [1000am – 1045am] Verse Speaking

  (Presenter: Alicia Kim Chua  – SPAF Adjudicator)

  1. Using your voice
  2. Words and meaning
  3. Using Breath, Pause and Emphasis
  4. Let’s practice
  5. Notes about recording performance video
  6. Q & A

  [1100am – 1230pm] Welcome and SPAF Introduction

  (Presenter: Mary Ann Tear – SPAF Committee Chair and Chief Adjudicator) 

  1. Our mission for Singapore Performing Arts Festival.
  2. What to expect.
  3. Brief introduction to the categories offered.
  4. What’s NEW! for 2022.

PM SESSION (Afternoon)  

  [200pm – 245pm] Performance Arts

  (Presenter: Amina Jindani – SPAF Adjudicator)

  1. Preparing Candidates for Pre-Recorded Performing Arts Submission.
  2. Help participants to examine the vital elements of performance acting and storytelling.
  3. Explore how to improve the clarity of voice through an exploration of the elements of emphasis, articulation and pace; as well as compare actioning to movement.
  4. Props versus mime
  5. Position yourself in the space in pre-recorded video submissions.

    [300pm – 430pm] Creative Writing

  (Presenter: Amina Jindani – SPAF Adjudicator) 

  1. An Introduction to Plot-Twists in Creative Writing
  2. Join us for a fun and exciting virtual board game experience on how plot twists work in storytelling narratives.
  3. Amina will take the participants through a 1 hour 45 minute introduction to the game, The Snakes and Ladders of Plot Twists.
  4. Participants will be writing down their Hero’s Journey ideas as the game evolves with some sharing of story notes at the end.

To Register for the AM Zoom session, please click this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZUodOCtpj0qHNEHHAKGCsz1jOuskV13K6Fw

To Register for the PM Zoom session, please click this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYuc-6rpj4rE9ED1Ck7gqmNbqV21QNo2xzR

J Carter Centre for Public Speaking has been supporting the Singapore Performing Arts Festival since its early inception. Every year, our communication skills students will participate in several categories. The experience has expanded their skill sets in the area of public speaking and helped them gain confidence in the area of performance. We look forward to working together with the organisers MSWorks in this year’s event.

J Carter Centre for Public Speaking – March 2022 Workshops

DSA-SEC(Pri 6) Portfolio Workshop  (Zoom online)

This workshop will teach students techniques to prepare effective portfolios to highlight their strengths and achievements to school admission officers. The workshop will focus on different approaches which students can use to increase their chances of getting shortlisted for an interview during the DSA selection process. This workshop is catered to Primary 6 students attempting DSA in 2022.

The workshop will cover the following areas and more: 

  • Preparing a standard portfolio (Hardcopy)
  • Preparing creative portfolios (soft copy/online) 
  • How to highlight achievements on DSA application form using google suite

The methods taught in this workshop will be suitable for students applying to most domains except visual arts.

For the March school holidays, we will be offering the Portfolio Workshop only. Interview coaching workshops will be offered during the June holidays. All workshops will be conducted online using Zoom conferencing software. The details of the  workshops are listed below:

DSA Portfolio

  • Run 1 – 16 March 2022 – 2 pm – 5 pm
  • Run 2 – 18 March 2022 – 2 pm – 5 pm

Fee: $158
Reg: $40 (new student only)

PSLE Oral Examination Preparation Workshop (Zoom Online)

In these workshops, we share our proven oral techniques that have helped many students ace this challenging exam. The workshop will help your child improve their ability to read expressively and converse knowledgeably. Each workshop will focus on 2 themes commonly tested during Primary 6 Prelim and PSLE. There are a total of 4 different workshops that will cover 8 themes. The workshops do not need to be taken in sequence as each workshop will cover the oral techniques required to do well in this examination. Students can choose to register for all 4 different workshops to be fully prepared for the oral examination.

The workshops will offer the following benefits to the learner: 

  • Develop opinions while expressing them in a confident and succinct manner using good phrases and proper sentence structure.
  • Learn essential reading techniques using our special PAFER(P) method to deliver a well-paced, fluent reading of a passage.

The themes covered in the workshops are as follows:

  • Workshop 1 – Values, Personal/Family themes
  • Workshop 2 – Community-related, National issues themes
  • Workshop 3 – School related, Activities themes
  • Workshop 4 – Travelling/Transportation, Financial themes

For the March school holidays, we will be offering Workshop 1 only – Values, Personal/Family themes. The rest will be offered during the June holidays. All workshops will be conducted online using Zoom conferencing software. The details are listed below:

Workshop 1 – Values, Personal/Family

  • Run 1 – 16-18 March 2022 – 10 am to 1 pm
  • Run 2 – 16-18 March 2022 – 2 pm – 5 pm

Fee: $498
Reg: $40 (new student only)

Contact Information

If you have any questions or would like to register for the workshops, you may call 67372700 during centre hours or email: info@jcartercentre.com

Opening Hours
Wed – Fri: 3 pm – 7 pm
Sat & Sun: 10 am-4 pm   

Closed on Mondays, Tuesdays, and public holidays

Trinity College London Communication Skills Top Achievers for June/July 2021

Congratulations to all of our top achievers for the June/July 2021 examinations. To achieve this position at J Carter Centre, students must score the highest percentage for their grade level and/or above 90% whichever is higher. They will receive a special trophy and their photo will be displayed on our ‘Wall of Fame’ at the reception area of the centre.

DSA-SEC: How COVID-19 changed the way schools conducted their selection process

Testimonials from former students who took the 10-week DSA Preparation Course

COVID-19 fatigue – we are all experiencing it but how did this pandemic affect the way DSA-SEC selection process was carried out in 2020 and 2021. This is what I will be discussing in this article. I will focus more on the way Integrated Programme (IP) schools changed the way they conduct their DSA selection process as I prepare more students for these schools in our 10-weeks DSA Preparation Course. Details of this course were shared in the previous post: https://jcartercentre.blog/2021/11/25/january-2022-intake-j-carter-centre-for-public-speaking/

Let’s talk about the situation in 2020. The pandemic took everyone by surprise as a result secondary schools had to rush to set up online options to continue with the selection process. There were many teething issues moving the process online – not only were the schools grappling with video conferencing software, but they also had to change the way they conducted the trials, auditions, written tests, and interviews. At the same time, they had to work closely with the primary schools to set up the video conferencing equipment on their end in order for the candidates to connect with the secondary schools they had been shortlisted for.

The following information that I am sharing is based on the feedback given to me by parents and students who had taken my DSA Preparation Course. As such it will be an overview of how some of the schools carried out their processes. For confidentiality reasons, I will not mention the name of the schools in this article nor entertain questions in the comments section or through private messaging (PM).

  • *Application Stage
    • Due to time constraints and the need to seek the help of primary schools to carry out the selection process, secondary schools were more stringent in the way they shortlisted the candidates after the application stage. They only shortlisted those who had credentials that reflected strong abilities and interest in the specific talent domain applied for.
  • *Hardcopy Portfolios and Personal Statements
    • Many schools did away with the need for portfolios because primary schools were tasked to send the student’s performance records directly to the secondary schools. The online application also asked for a list of achievements or activities carried out privately but this was limited to 10 so those with lots of enrichment activities had to scale down what they could share with the schools they were applying for. Only certain domains still required a portfolio and usually a soft-copy version to be uploaded to the school site or sent by email to the school. Some of the domains are: English, Science, Innovation, and visual arts.
    • As for personal statements, mostly leadership domains require one.
  • *Sports domain
    • Sports students were asked to send videos showing how they played although it was optional – before the school shortlisted them for the next stage. This caught many off-guard as parents do not normally video taped any of their children’s practise sessions. Some parents who invested in private coaching on the other hand were luckier as they had videos of their children’s private coaching sessions.
    • On selection day, some schools recruited the help of primary school P.E. teachers to put the students through some activities and exercises while they watch the performance through video conferencing. These were mainly for team sports. Individual sports candidates had to depend on their past performances and competition achievements to secure an interview with the school.
  • *Performing Arts domain
    • Students were asked to send videos of their performances before being shortlisted for an interview.
    • Some required shortlisted candidates to audition live through video conferencing before conducting a 1-to-1 interview.
    • Others required videos, auditions and interviews.
  • Academic domains
    • Several schools did away with online interviews for academic domains and only required students to complete written tests online. The software used by some of the schools prevented students from going back to the previous questions to change their answers once it had been submitted. There was also a time factor involved and students were unable to continue with the test once the time limit was up.
    • Others required the students to undergo a vocal Q & A segment. Students heard a recording of a series of 5 questions and were given 15 minutes to plan how they were going to answer them. They were then given 5 minutes to record their answers. Not everyone was able to answer all the questions in 5 minutes.
    • Some showed the students videos on certain issues and asked them to share their thoughts through a written essay.
    • For schools that retained the interview portion of the selection process, they chose to conduct group or individual interviews via online video conferencing. The individual interviews were smoother but the group interviews faced some issues due to students logging in from different primary schools at the same time. Some candidates joined the meeting later than the allotted time due to technical difficulties. As a result, some group interviews were rather rushed and less confident students had difficulty speaking and standing out from the group.

After overcoming all the teething issues the schools faced in 2020, the 2021 selection process was better. However, changes were implemented again and some of the methods were done away with as they did not work well the previous year.

  • * Application stage, Portfolios, and Personal Statements
    • There was no changes for these segments and schools were just as strigent in shortlisting students for the DSA testing, auditions, and interviews.
  • *Sports Domain
    • This year, there were less requirements for trials and videos. Instead students were shortlisted directly to the interview segment if they showed some potential. As there weren’t any National School games or competitions and hardly any sports training for students, IP schools gave out less Confirm Offers (CO) for this domain. Many were waitlisted (WL) instead and these were later switched to CO after PSLE results were released. However, unique sports like Fencing and Shooting for example were assessed differently as students in these sports mainly compete and train privately. Shooting for example was able to compete virtually while fencing had some private competitions running this year.
  • *Performing Arts
    • Not much changes for this domain and students still send in videos, audition and interview through video conferencing. Private competitions and examinations for music were still happening although virtually so students from this domain were able to enhance their musical portfolio of achievements. However, similar to the sports domain, fewer CO and WL were given out for this domain by IP schools as there was a reduction in public performances and practice sessions in schools due to cancellation of CCA.
  • Academic domains
    • Some of the schools conducted written tests only for some of the subject domains like Mathematics and Bilingual, while most carried out both testing and interviews and others only focused on conducting interviews.
    • There were fewer technical difficulties this time around as schools were more familiar with using the video conferencing software.
    • More COs were given out under Academic and Leadership domains.

*Please take note that the information shared about DSA application, portfolios, personal statements, sports, and performing arts domains does not apply to SOTA or The Singapore Sports School. These SIS schools conduct their own application and selection process and are not part of the DSA-SEC selection process offered by the Ministry of Education (MOE).

There is a good chance that the 2022 selection process will still be conducted online as the COVID-19 situation is still uncertain. However, the process may change again depending on how the situation will be by the time July 2022 comes around. We will have to wait and see in May 2022 when schools will publish their criteria for DSA to be sure how they will conduct the selection process. In the meantime, all the best to those who will be attempting DSA selection next year. If you would like to register for the DSA Preparation Course for Primary 6 students starting in February 2022 the details are as follows:

Programme Details and Dates

  • For Primary 6 students attempting DSA in 2022
  • Maximum of 8 participants
  • 1.5 hours weekly for 10 weeks
  • Course dates: Thursdays, 17/02/2021-28/04/2021
  • Time: 5.30 pm-7 pm
  • Venue: Face-to-Face at J Carter Centre
  • Vancancies: 4 (as of 5/12/2021)

For more information, please refer to the previous blog post: https://jcartercentre.blog/2021/11/25/january-2022-intake-j-carter-centre-for-public-speaking/

Happy Holidays!

January 2022 Intake – J Carter Centre For Public Speaking

Updates regarding January 2022 Intake

Greetings from J Carter Centre. First and foremost, we would like to thank you for your interest in our programmes.

As we are in the process of registering students for the next semester, we feel that it would be appropriate to post an update regarding the available vacancies for next semester’s intake – January 2022.

Vacancies for our signature programme-Trinity College London (TCL) Communications Skills 

We have consolidated our available vacancies for our signature programme – TCL Communication skills programme. Those who have not registered can still do so. The timetable is shown above and the number of vacancies available is correct as of 25 November 2021. However, to get the latest updates on vacancies, please email us at info@jcartercentre

Entry to Trinity Programme at J Carter

  • Initial 1 – Primary 1 in 2022
  • Initial 2 – Primary 2 in 2022 or completed Initial 1
  • Grade 1 – Primary 3 in 2022 or completed Initial 2
  • Grade 2 – Primary 4 in 2022 or completed Grade 1
  • Grade 3 – Primary 5 in 2022 or completed Grade 2
  • Grade 4 (group exam format) – pre-requisite: Completed Grade 3
  • Grade 4 (Solo exam format) – Secondary 1& 2 in 2022 or completed Grade 3
  • Grade 5 (group exam format) – pre-requisite: Completed Grade 4 (group exam format)
  • Grade 5 (solo exam format) – Secondary 3 & 4 or completed Grade 4 (solo exam format)
  • Grade 6  – JC 1 & Poly Year 1 or completed Grade 5 (solo exam format)
  • Grade 7 – JC 2 & Poly Year 2 or completed Grade 6 (solo exam format)
Testimonials from former students who attended 10-weeks DSA Prep course

Direct School Admissions (DSA-SEC) – Overview

For students who are keen to attempt DSA in 2022, we suggest that you enrol in the DSA Preparation Course in Semester 1, 2022. We offer a holistic DSA preparation for Primary 6 students with a focus on Integrated Programme schools (IP), Specialised Independent Schools (SIS), Express, and International schools. This course is developed to include a wide range of activities that will prepare students for the DSA selection process in the following talent areas:

  • Sports and games
  • Visual, literary and performing arts
  • Debate and public speaking
  • Science, mathematics and engineering
  • Languages and humanities
  • Leadership (for example, prefects)

This course is conducted by our founder, Jackeline Carter who has 12 years of experience coaching students successfully through the DSA-SEC selection process for IP, SIS, Express and the 3 International schools- SJI International, ACS International and Hwa Cheong International. As an expert in communication skills, she has extensive experience training students to perform at their best during the selection trials and interviews. This course will cover the following areas and more:

  • Matching talent to schools and domains
  • Best practises for submitting online application
  • Presentation skills
  • Impromptu speaking 
  • Group discussions
  • Problem-solving activities
  • Viewpoint essay writing
  • Creative Portfolio
  • Interview etiquette
  • Mock interviews

Jackeline Carter is the author of ‘Success Strategies for Direct School Admissions (DSA)’. One of the first books on DSA that was published in 2014 provides an easy to understand guide to preparing for DSA-SEC. Although this book is no longer in print, the updated version of the book will be given to students who enrol in the 10-week DSA Preparation Course.

Programme Details and Dates

  • For Primary 6 students attempting DSA in 2022
  • Maximum of 8 participants
  • 1.5 hours weekly for 10 weeks
  • Course dates: Thursdays, 17/02/2021-28/04/2021
  • Time: 5.30 pm-7 pm
  • Venue: Face-to-Face at J Carter Centre

Post-Course Materials and Support

  • Individualised feedback based on child’s performance during the course.
  • Guidelines and Interview list specific to school(s) and domain(s) selected by the student
  • Video recordings of student’s participation in the various activities including mock interviews
  • On-going support via email to parents and students if needed until the completion of DSA selection process

For more information about our programmes or updates on vacancies, please email info@jcartercentre.com. You may also contact us at 67372700 during centre opening hours.

Please take care and stay safe. Here’s wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Gold Award for Creative Writing – Devin Ding

Congratulations to our student Devin Ding for achieving a Gold Award for Creative Writing at this year’s SPAF 2021. All of us at J Carter Centre is so proud of your achievement. You can read his wonderful story below:

An Act of Kindness By Devin Ding

“Help!” A familiar voice rang out. Noting that the sound was coming from the other side of the park, I limped towards the source of the noise. Hiding behind the bushes, I peered over them…

“Are you done yet?” My brother shouted up the stairs. “Almost done! “I replied. I bolted down the stairs to join my brother. It was an average Sunday morning, and the sun was shining majestically. “The perfect weather to rollerblade, “I thought. Clad in protective gear, I was ready to roller skate with my brother. “Let’s go! And last one to the lake is a rotten egg!” He sped off, leaving me grumbling about the unfair head start he got. I soon followed him, determined to make him succumb to defeat! Soon, I was gaining on him, and we were still a distance away from the lake. “Oof!” I crashed into a bush. I had failed to notice the innocuous stone in the middle of the path until the very last minute where I swerved right and crashed into the bushes. “Looks like I’m the rotten egg again!” I sighed.

Getting up, I felt something trickling down my leg. I looked down, only to see vermilion blood all over my knee. Taking my gear off and placing them into a small bag, I made my way to the toilet and managed to clean my wound. I then placed a plaster over it. Resting on the bench, I looked off into the distance, lost in my reverie. “Help!” a voice screamed, breaking me from my trance. The voice was familiar, but I could not make out the owner of the voice. Worried, I made my way to the source of the sound and hid behind some bushes. Peering through the gap in the bushes, I screamed internally in horror. Sarah, my classmate was being bullied by Jake, our school bully! Must have been because Sarah told our teacher what Jake was doing behind their backs. Though I was larger than him, he was known to put up scuffle with anybody and in the process, seriously hurting them! If I decided to confront him, I would be beaten like piñatas!

I was caught in a moral dilemma as I pondered what to do. “Go and help Sarah, Sam.” A voice in my head said, “You should stand up to bullies and help your classmates.” “But what if he hurts me? “I murmured, waiting for a response. However, the voice was no more, reduced to a mere echo in my head. “Okay, I shall help her.” With that, I stood up walked into the open field.

“Stop picking on her, you bully!” I shouted at Jake, who turned his head around and looked at me in shock. All of a sudden, he threw his head back and hollered with laughter. “You think you can stop me, wimp? Of course not! Stop trying to be the hero!” He replied maliciously, amused by my sudden outburst. However, I was not at all affected by his untrue words. “No, you are the wimp! You bully others because you just want people to know that you are strong, but you’re not!” “How dare you…” With that, he charged at me, his fists raised.

The blow never came, and I slowly peeked out of the tiny slits in my eyelids. “Sorry, sir!” Jake was apologising meekly. Looking around, I could see my headmaster, towering over Jake, arms akimbo. Turning towards me, he smiled kindly. “Are you okay? I am proud that you stood up to Jake!” he said, before turning to Jake, his face stern again, and said, “As for you, I will call your parents!” Mumbling, I said I was okay. “Thanks, Sam! Thanks for helping me!” Sarah said gratefully.

I then walked home with my brother, who had a perplexed look on his face as he had searched for me around the park but had not found me until now. As I related the incident to him, he gaped in awe and patted me on the shoulder said, “Whoa, brother! You stood up to Jake? Cool! He will know never to mess with us again!”

Gold Award for Verse Speaking – Joyce Zheng

We are happy to introduce another Gold Award Achiever for the category of Verse Speaking at the recent SPAF 2021. Congratulations to Joyce Zheng for her outstanding achievement. Everyone at J Carter Centre is very proud of you. You can watch her performance by clicking on the video below.

The Dragon by Kevin Mccann

Gold Award for Verse Speaking – JAMIE LEE (LI QIANMIN)

Another Gold award achiever for SPAF 2021! Congratulations Jamie for a wonderful achievement in Verse Speaking. We are all so proud of you at J Carter Centre for Public Speaking. Please enjoy the Jamie’s performance by clicking on the video below:

Verse Speaking: Attention to a Spider by John Coldwell

Gold Awards for Public Speaking & Verse Speaking -SPAF 2021 – Ella Loo

Congratulations to Ella Loo for achieving Double Gold at SPAF 2021. Watch her performances below. Well done Ella, we are so proud of your achievement!

Verse Speaking – The Dragon by Kevin Mccann
Topic: Physical exercise is good for the body and the mind
Audience: Members of the Chess Club CCA

Trinity College London Communication Skills Top Achievers for the Year 2020

Congratulations to all of our top achievers for the 2020 examinations. To achieve this position at J Carter Centre, students must score the highest percentage for their grade level and/or above 90% whichever is higher. They will receive a special trophy and their photo will be displayed on our ‘Wall of Fame’ at the reception area.