Tuesday, May 22, 2012

We Don't Argue, We Debate!!!

My Son Carter and One of  His Debate Teammate
Yesterday, I had an interview blog with Ms. Hawthorne about the pilot debate program that was started the 2011-2012 school year in Cole Elementary a Nashville, TN public school. Today, I want to share just a few more details about this new 4th grade debate program and what exactly are the students taking on when they sign up for the rookie Cole program. In this blog you will also hear what the students themselves have to say about debating.
Twenty-two 4th grade students participated in this year's debate program and twenty-two students walked away with a new experience and a better understanding of debate. The team's motto was “We don’t argue, we debate” and under the watchful eye of the teams three coaches Ms. Hawthorne, Mrs. Buchanan, and Ms. Stuible that is just what these students learned to do. The students debated such topics as the Celebration of Christopher Columbus Day, Daily Television Viewing and Parents Legal Responsibility When It Comes to a Child’s Actions. The students not only learned the mechanics of the debating art, they also learned how to research, how to speak in public and how to ask the right questions. While an impressive amount of knowledge for fourth grade students to absorb, this group of 4th grades were up for the challenge. With the guidance and direction of their three exceptional coaches, the students proved that 4th graders are capable and I would say even eager to learn through debate. The Cole and the Kirkpatrick team have really set the standards high for other schools to follow suit with debate teams. I have really been impressed with both student and teachers alike for giving up after school hours for a passionate dedication to the program and overall teamwork. All of these things where key to this program's successful first year in our school district.
School Display of the Debate Students!!!

Here is what some of students from the Cole Elementary Debate Warriors team had to say when asked about debate.

Debate has helped me to learn that I can do anything if I put my mind to it.Hemmerson

I think other schools should have debate teams because it teaches kids how to handle an argument.Jannely

Other schools should have debate teams because it is good practice for things that come later in life. It also helps with all other subjects. Those subjects included: reading, writing, language, math, social studies and science. – John

I have learned that it takes a lot of work to get everything ready to debate. – Lesly

The hardest part of debate is listening to the other team – Doris

I will continue to debate because debating is fun, challenging, and educational. – Kayla

The conclusion is my favorite part of debate because it’s when we get to wrap up all the loose ends.Tyria

Debate has taught me to speak louder and write better.Alandos

Debate has taught me to express what I think without letting my emotions explode. – Kathleen

As a student on the debate team I learned to speak louder, and I learned many facts. – Carter

The debate team helped me learn you don’t have to be scared to speak in public. –Marlin

I have learned what debate is and how to use critical thinking skills. – Christina

Other elementary schools should have debate teams because it helps with fluency. – Kaitlyn

I will keep debating because it’s fun. – Carson

My favorite part of debating is when I get to be the opener. – Karla

The hardest part of debate is when you have to find strong detailed sentences and true facts about the subject. - Daniel


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