How to Prepare for District CDC

By: rhea athilat

I’m pretty sure we can all agree on one thing here- preparation is a MUST at competition. Although it may be true that we all prepare in different ways, there are a few preparation tips that we all can practice. Let’s go through the top three together.

Tip #1: Get PLENTY of Rest.

I know, this is probably the most cliche of all competition tips. But here’s the thing about cliches- they’re usually ALWAYS on point. Sleep can go a long way, so make sure you’re asleep for at least eight hours the night before competition. Some people are under the false impression that cramming the night before competition helps, when in reality, this will only overwhelm your brain. Don’t believe me? Let’s take a trip back to science class.

“In the 1970’s researchers proposed the “Levels of Processing” theory. They argued that “deep processing” led to better long-term memory than “shallow processing”. Shallow processed information can be encoded by the brain based on the simple characteristics of the words, rather than the meaning. So the knowledge is only able to be stored in short-term memory stores, where it is only retained for a short period.”

Scientists said it, not me. Okay on a serious note, prepare and study months in advance, so the night before competition you can treat yourself to some beauty sleep. I promise, the next morning you will feel as confident as ever!

Tip #2: Make Flashcards

This can work for both written and role plays! For role plays, making flash cards on key vocabulary terms will definitely help you in terms of presentation and allowing yourself to stand out among other competitors. On the other hand, for written, it would be in your best favor to NOT memorize your entire presentation, but rather make flashcards that will lead you to the right track. You can use these flashcards while you present in front of your friends, teachers, and families! Just make sure they’re not physically used during your role play. With this tip, you’ll be on your journey to success in DECA Competition.

Tip #3: Be Yourself.

Our last and final tip is to be yourself. Now I know what you’re thinking, “That was even more cliche than the first tip!” Okay, yeah. It kind of was. Just remember, even though technological terms and advanced speaking skills goes a long way- having a personality of your own is just as important. Remember- your judge is human, too. We’re all different variations on a theme. There is only one YOU. Nobody else is exactly like you, and that’s what makes us all unique. This is a factor that none of us should take for granted. When you make your first impression to the judge, make sure you’re promoting your brand positively and that you remain yourself the whole time. Hopefully this will ease out your nerves a little bit, and have you shine on that stage!