Universally considered to be one of the most important life skills - - and we could not agree more!
Debate Camp welcomes all aspiring young speakers, from the reluctant to the super-keen and able. Our goal is to help campers become comfortable and good at standing in the company of others and clearly expressing an idea, key information, perhaps solving a problem or even just to entertain.
In spite of all our communication technologies, we at Debate Camp believe that public speaking is a life skill and our program is built on the following principles:
• good speeches begin with interesting topics
• organized thought is key to maintaining audience interest
• it is important to be both clear and concise
• real life speeches will not be memorized
• being in the moment, as one speaks - is essential
Outlined here are the speaking formats campers are exposed to at camp. In all program areas, campers will exercise impromptu speaking skills daily.
- aims to raise awareness of a societal problem
- speaker advocates for possible solutions
- employs multiple tools of persuasion
- evident research and knowledge of topic
- 5 - 7 minute speaking time - junior
- 7 - 10 minute speaking time - senior
- limited notes permitted
- aims to inform and entertain an audience
- speaker may assume a fictional role
- allows for unlimited creativity in topic selection
- strong attempt at humourous oratory
- 3 - 5 minute speaking time - junior
- 5 - 7 minute speaking time - senior
- limited notes permitted
- topics provided 2 - 5 minutes in advance
- organized thought encouraged
- no notes permitted
- 2 - 3 minute speaking time - junior
- 3 - 5 minute speaking time - senior
COMMON ROOM SET-UP AT CAMP
1 - 2 JUDGES OR COACH
LIFE AT DEBATE CAMP
PUBLIC SPEAKING PROGRAM - ALL CAMPS
PROBLEM - SOLUTION
Debate Camp has developed a bank of impromptu speaking topics. We are happy to share some here - - as examples. More are developed each summer!
OPEN PROGRAM / Grades 5 - 6
My three favorite animals.
What you would find in my closet.
The best letter of the alphabet.
A day that stands out.
If I had a million dollars to give away.
If cats/dogs ruled the world.
A trip to remember.
If I could only eat three foods forever.
If I could design a school.
Why books are important.
A job I'd love to have.
If I could have dinner with anyone.
If I could travel through time
PLUS PROGRAM / Grades 7 - 9
Professional athletes are overpaid
Should everyone learn a second language?
Present a brief timeline of the history of your country.
Create a perfect - but non-lethal - punishment for badly behaved students.
You should always know the career path you want... (why? / why not?)
Intelligence is not enough to succeed in school. (because)
If you sang performed with a professional musician, which one would it be with?
What is your favorite piece of art?
Do you prefer poetry, drama, or opera?
What would make the world a safer place?
The expression / slogan / motto that best describes my view of life is…
LEVEL UP / Grades 8 -11
Capital Punishment (Death Penalty). Should a criminal ever be executed?
Genetic Cloning (making an exact copy of a person) Should it be allowed?
Euthanasia - Is it ever justified? If so, when?
If you could change one thing in history what would it be and why?
The assassination of a dictator can/cannot be justified
Exams are/are not good forms of assessment
Why it's important to meditate
A nation can be judged by how well it treats its poorest people. (why).
What moral issue best defines you?
What is the biggest effect of the internet?
Beauty is always in the eye of the beholder. (because)
A child’s home life affects their success in school the most. (because)
Is capitalism the best political and economic system? Defend your choice.
Is knowledge more important than wisdom?
Does technology live up to its promise?
Your school has to cut art, music and drama or science. Which do you fight to keep?
Love is a choice