Over the past four years, staff members in Spa N.S. have made great efforts to promote the skills of debating in our classes and to offer our students the opportunities to prepare for, host and engage in debates on relevant and challenging topics. This work has proven to be hugely popular amongst the students and a fitting extension to the implementation of the new Primary Language Curriculum in the school. Having seen the great interest shown by the students in debating, staff members then decided to enter teams into the Kerry Primary Schools Debating Competition.
Mrs. Griffin Crowe, Miss Kelly, Miss Hickey and Miss Breen have prepared school teams to participate in this wonderful competition. It’s wonderful to see the fantastic level of teamwork and preparation that classes put into their pieces as well as the tremendous confidence, discipline and composure the speakers display as the debate rages.
Whether the team wins or loses the debate, it is always an amazing experience for the students where they learn so much.
What the debating experience offers students?
Reasoning, research and even public speaking skills are just some of the positives behind learning how to be a great debater. From planning your argument (even if you don’t agree with it) to choosing your words wisely, debating will help you take on whatever life chooses to throw at you. Debating is by no means the same as entering into a full-on argument. In fact, you will need to develop a succinct, effective argument, which will gain you support and kudos, rather than blindly attacking your opponent. From Cicero to Michael D Higgins, history’s great debaters have helped shape the world we live in and resolve many of society’s issues. There are many ways that debating can help a student in their lives for years to come.
- Be a better critical thinker
- Articulate your thoughts
- Realise that education and preparation is key
- Think on your feet
- Conflict resolution
- Show some empathy
- Keep your emotions in check
- Construct meaning out of complex situations
- Presentation skills
- Confidence boost.
- Be more socially conscious
- Develop an expanded worldview
In the words of former U.S. General Colin Powell,
“Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt, to offer a solution everybody can understand!”
We rest our case