South High's Speech and Debate Program is designed to offer direct instruction in competitive speech and debate, from beginners to advanced students. Students with diverse interests and skills take Speech and Debate.
For New Students: Speech and Debate course exposes students to various types of speeches and argumentation in a basic and straightforward manner. In addition to preparing original speeches, you will learn to speak off-the-cuff and give prepared speeches. Never lose arguments again! You will learn debate techniques and master how to make effective, persuasive class presentations, including PowerPoint, demonstrations, group discussions, and introductions. You will learn how to give and accept an award, write and deliver a eulogy and win arguments!
For Continuing Students: Students do extensive research and are required to attend and participate in events held outside of school hours. Students can expect to learn how to channel natural competitive energy into positive communication strategies, how to prepare a good speech, discover where to go to find sources and materials, learn how to begin and end a speech, and prepare speaker's notes. You will learn, from experience, how to analyze an audience, dress for success, and present yourself as an articulate speaker. In addition, Speech and Debate provides an excellent experience for advanced speech students who wish to learn how to debate. This class will teach students how to express ideas and to defend them under direct challenge. Debate teaches tact, resourcefulness, and ability to think on one's feet, and it teaches that ideas must be backed by evidence, not by mere conjecture and opinion. Students will learn major philosophical concepts and moral theories, and will apply them to the cases they will construct and argue.