Get Ready to Debate

Next year, Leesville is starting an exciting new club — debate club. This club will include meetings and competitions in debate, speech, and interpretation.

Speech is an event in which a student will either compose a speech in essay form or come up with a speech on the spot. They are graded on both its content and the way they present it.

Interpretation is just like acting. You are presented a script and read it to a judge (with feeling, obviously). There are all kinds of interpretation, mostly depending on the genre of the piece being interpreted. These genres include humorous, serious, or dramatic.

Debate, the more common event, is a little more complicated. There are three types of debate: Lincoln-Douglas, Public Forum, and Congress. Lincoln-Douglas is when two students, an affirmative and a negative, have to state their own case on a philosophical or ethical idea. In Public Forum, students work in teams of two and mostly discuss national issues. Congress is just like actual Congress: Students propose, debate and vote on bills.

“Personally, I like discussion more than debate. I feel like [in] debate you talk at a hundred words a minute and yell the other person down,” said Sarah Arney

Ms. Melanie Spransy and Ms. Alicia Whitley, teachers at Leesville, are working together to get debate team started.

“It’s going to be mainly student run. You pick an event, and you and your group are going to figure out that event and prepare for it. Mrs. Whitley and I are going to be there to support that process,” said Spransy.

“Congressional debate and the dramatic interpretation [both] interest me,” said Arney.

Next year, debate club will work toward a local competition in the spring of 2014 that will be held at Cary High School.

“I love debate. I did debate in high school, and I learned skills in debate that I use every day. To facilitate that for students will be really exciting,” said Spransy.


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