19March2015 Thinkering Day Demo Debate

Today was a fun day for us at Thinkering Day – the kids (and Jacki too) have asked to see a debate in action, and while I tried to finagle Chance coming – his schedule did not allow it – I ended up talking John to come over on a precious day off from work to run a debate with me. He’s been judging tournament now for 3 years, and I thought he would be a great substitute for Chance (and I was completely right). We opened with John talking for a few minutes about his experiences, and giving a general overview of what a tournament looks like. There are of course different events, and we decided to focus on Public Forum, which isn’t as focused on evidence and technical details as Policy (Chance’s true love in the world of forensics). I sent out a transcript of the class to the parents since a few of the kids couldn’t make it, and I felt it was valuable enough to make it worth while writing it out, so it is below if you have any interest in reading through what John and I did. John explained the judging process a bit, and so the kids and Jacki sat as judges and not only decided who won, but also scored us on our speaking (you can lose a debate round but still score very high on speaker points – the league keeps track of them and tallies them up at the end of the year for all the debate kids). John ended up beating me, but we had so many valuable teaching moments in the discussion before, during and after! Ethos, rebuttals, speaking to your audience, gestures and speaking style, word choice and style in speaking, and a few that I am sure I am forgetting. 

Leave a Comment