We have added ‘Debating’ to our curriculum at Lever House. We feel that debating skills are great skills to have – the ability to develop speaking and listening skills, being able to put forward a logical and well though out persuasive argument based on objective facts, be able to listen to a counter argument, critically examine it and rebut the points made and of course do all this whilst engaging with the audience in a confident and clear way.
Great debaters are able to do all this quickly, whilst standing on their feet 🙂
To develop this, we have started to train pupils in Year 6 how to debate. They will then teach the rest of Year 6 who will then in turn, teach Year 5 pupils.
In order to start this off, myself and Mrs Simmonds took three Year 6 pupils to a Blackpool school to meet three other debating teams from Hawes Side Primary, Layton Primary and Garstang St Thomas’ Primary.
In the morning, the pupils learnt about debating. Then, after lunch, we were really lucky, in that we had secured a visit to the Council Chambers at Wyre.
The pupils sat in the debating chambers and had a debate – “This House believes that iPads are better than books”.
The pupils were fantastic and were using the language of debating very well and to great effect. Lots of arguments and counter arguments were put forward, with rebuttals flying back and forth and then some excellent summing up by both teams.
The result? Books 5 – iPads 3