Do you know what a debate is?
A team debate is a kind of argument between two teams (or two people) on a given topic. Each team is asked to either agree (“for” team”) or disagree (“against” team) with the topic and take turns speaking to support their argument.
Our students took part in debates in class. The topic in this debate was “smoking should banned in public places…”. Each team had three members， and they were given two weeks to research and prepare their arguments. They looked online or in the school library for information， data or statistics that could be used to support their arguments.
The debate itself was divided in three 10min rounds with a 5min break between each round (kind of like a boxing match! hahaha). In each round， each team would choose one member to speak for 5min. During the breaks， the teams could have meetings to decide how to argue against the points made by the other team in the previous round. This type of argument is called a “rebuttal”. Finally， the team that made the most convincing argument was the winner. A good debating team should always support their arguments with recognized facts and statistics， and be able to make strong rebuttals against the other team’s points !!
Here are some tips for a good debate. Can you match the debate tip with the language used?
1) use rebuttals → ANSWER: b) You said that passive smoking is a big problem， but actually there are many other pollutants in the air in large cities such as…
2) quote the information source →
3) use repetition for extra stress →
4) appeal to common-sense →
a) According to an American Heart Foundation study done in 2002， 25% of smokers developed health problems after the age of 60…
b) You said that passive smoking is a big problem， but actually there are many other pollutants in the air in large cities such as…
c) We agree that smoking is bad for your health， but as everybody knows， in a democratic society people should have the right to act freely….
d) It’s a fact that smoking causes cancer. It’s a fact that smoking causes heat disease cancer. It’s a fact that smoking causes respiratory problems…
Answers to last blog's questions:
Example 1) I put my foot in my mouth ⇒ b) to say something stupid
2) He got his foot in the door ⇒ a) to get a chance or opportunity
3) She is run off her feet ⇒ d) to be very busy
4) You should put your feet up ⇒ c) to have a rest or relax