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In this class, students learn the skills of critical thinking, persuasion, listening, and effective communication in context of seven speaking and debate events. Those events are:

  1. Impromptu

  2. Spar

  3. Oratory

  4. Student Congress

  5. Extemporaneous

  6. Presidential Debate

  7. Lincoln Douglass

The class is about speaking and debating, but is just as much about critical thinking, being able to organize thoughts, understanding important ideas and current events, and being part of a community of students striving to succeed. We want students to be able to debate, but it is more important to us that they develop the skills and mindsets which will prepare them to engage critically in communities, government, business, education, and life.

Classes begin with half an hour of discussion and debate on current events, politics, moral issues, and big ideas. During this time students get to match wits with their teacher and are challenged to think more deeply than they ever have before. ​​

In class, students spend their time thinking, discussing, researching, and, more than anything, speaking and debating because that is what makes the class exciting and that is how students learn best. By being in the class, students are members of the Wasatch Independent Debate League and compete in WIDL tournaments.  Competitions are motivating and challenging growth oriented experiences. They also provide a community of successful people with whom students can engage.

Students also have an opportunity to compete in 7 Debate Tournaments throughout the school year with all of their peers (a league of over 400 students!)

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