Honing new Debaters

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Friday night, I went straight from work to the gathering of my colleagues in debate instead of going straight home to join the WOE (War of Emperium) scheduled by my guild in Ragnarok New Iris Server. I stayed of approximately 30 minutes then went home to join the WOE, but decided to go back because I wanna chill on that night because work made me insane for that week stretch.

The moment I came back to that resto-bar where they are happily drinking booze while playing darts, one friend of mine asked me if I will be around tomorrow for a debate workshop to the students of Cebu Technological University – Danao Campus. At first I was hesitant and what was in my mind that time was my routine/piece for the MOVE Audition in Accenture. But thinking that it might be fun, even with my little knowledge and experience in debating, I said to that friend of mine that I will be there. Shocked when he told me about the call time, which is 7:30 AM, but when he mentioned that it will be FREE, then I’m assured, because of the fact that I am on a tight budget because of my 2 trips coming April.

7:30 AM came, and I thought I am already late and my friends already left me because they already hit the road going to Danao City, but to my surprise, no car from our coach was there yet. So I took the chance to grab something to eat because I left the house without any food on my tummy. The moment our coach arrived at the meeting place, we immediately went our way to CTU Danao Campus, with some stop-overs to pick up others. We arrived at the school and was welcomed by our contact person. She took us to a room and was offered with a hearty breakfast which I think was prepared by the students themselves. The food was so great, I almost felt that I already ate all the meals for the entire day.Immediately after the big breakfast, we went ahead to the venue for some introduction to our group, and a discussion about Oregon-Oxford Debate format.

Harold introduced us to the students.

Harold introduced us to the students and briefly shared our history.

Jacques explaining the Oregon-Oxford Debate format.

Jacques explaining the Oregon-Oxford Debate format.

Students attentively listening to the discussion.

Students attentively listening to the discussion.

After the concise explanation about Oregon-Oxford Debate, the participants were grouped for a workshop. It was clear in the expressions of the students that they are scared to do it, but there is a sense of excitement despite that fear. Me and Jacques partnered on the workshop and started the workshop after our lunch at a seafood place near the school, which is also as hearty as the breakfast by the students. We shared to them the concept of Map of Ideas and the AREC (Arguement, Reason, Evidence, Conclusion), which I barely know, honestly! The students had a bit of difficulty at first, but it was apparent that they wanted more of it.

Map of Ideas discussion.

Map of Ideas discussion.

Photo op first before the workshop ends.

Photo op first before the workshop ends.

After the workshop, selected students were given the chance to try the actual Oregon-Oxford Debate format which the students really enjoyed. It was their first time, but I must say, they managed to pull it off. The team, together with the students and the faculty, were all entertained by the performance of the students during the actual debate. It was indeed a fun round.

Part of our advocacy, which includes giving free debate training to schools like CTU Danao, is to let them come up with their own debate society to continue practicing the art of debating. On that day, the students elected their own debate society officers. I must commend their election process, because all of them participated on the elections. Nominated students were also eager to grab the position, which I think their society has the potential to be a power debate society.

During elections.

During elections.

Overall, that day was a fun and fulfilling day. We were able to share our knowledge about debating to these students, which is heart-warming, and these students are really happy because their viewpoint about debating has changed. Before they said that debating is really intimidating, but after our workshop, the are now interested to try the art. We can’t wait to teach them the Parliamentary Procedures for effective meeting, and some Leadership trainings! We hope we can have a good time with them again.

Final Photo Op before we hit the road going back to Cebu City.

Final Photo Op before we hit the road going back to Cebu City.

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