Twenty-four fourth and fifth grade students at Los Alamitos Elementary School sought to persuade or inform their peers and judges during Los Alamitos Elemntary’s annual speech contest. Each student presented a unique topic that ranged from why kids should have a cell phone from a kid’s perspective to important lessons that can be learned when we know how the brain works. Community judges included Council Member Richard Murphy, School Board President Meg Cutuli, School Board Member Karen Russell, Los Alamitos Director of Safety and Student Services, and Los Alamitos District Director of Fiscal Services Elvia Galicia, and commented that it was extremely difficult to narrow the field down to the top three winners due to the high quality of the speeches. After much deliberation, three winners were selected: First Place – Nathan Spolter who spoke about the positive aspects of Youtube; Second Place – Benji Gamarnik who informed the audience about “cruising” (going on cruises); and Third Place – Hala Essayli who talked about the importance of self-esteem. Finalists from fourth and fifth grade who joined the top three were: Gabriela Afable, Mohammad Essayli, Barron Bliss-Frisinger, Ryan Gipson, Lea Guijarro, Tim Kang, Luna Khazem, Dana Kim, Cali Koepke, Darveedt Mao, Julian Martinez, Carly McDaniel, Melanie Mena, Ryan Min, Sid Patterson, Ellie Rebennack, Nitish Sharma, Kamryn Sinclair, Nathan Spolter, Sofia Sweigart, Zachary Tang, and Kenneth Trotter.