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How to start a debate greeting | examples.
Before considering the best ways on how to start a debate greeting, let's have a short preview about the concept of debate. Debate Greeting Examples.
Debate Greeting Examples
What is debate.
How To Start A Debate Greeting (Examples)
- A debate greeting to each group of persons present at the debate scene
- An expression of thanks
- Your stand: whether you are for or against the topic of debate
- Good morning to all of you present here. I am [name] from house [name] to speak on the topic of [title]
- Good morning respected jury members, teachers and my dear friends. Today i code number ____ feel highly privileged to radiate forth my views in the favour/against the motion 'xyz'.
- ‘ Good evening respected judges, my worthy opponents, faculty members and audience , I (NAME) hereby humbly express my thanks for your interest in the (SUBJECT ). As previously stated I am hereby standing FOR/AGAINST the motion and if I have your permission I would like to begin by saying that……’
- “Good afternoon, honourable adjudicators, members of the opposing team, chairlady and audience. I'm the Captain of the affirmative side. Today, our motion is ______________.”
How To Start A Debate Greeting In School
Steps on how to start a debate greeting, things to note when considering how to start a debate greeting/ how to start an introduction for a debate.
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How to Write a Winning Debate Speech
What Is a Debate?
A debate is a formal discussion on a specific topic. Two sides argue for and against a specific proposal or resolution in a debate.
Debates have set conventions and rules that both sides or teams agree to abide by. A neutral moderator or judge is often appointed to help regulate the discussion between the opposing sides.
Debating is a form of persuasive communication. We complete a complete guide to persuasive writing, which will form the backbone of your debating speech that can be accessed here.
A COMPLETE UNIT ON CLASSROOM DEBATING
This unit will guide your students to write excellent DEBATE SPEECHES and craft ARGUMENTS that are well-researched, constructed and ready for critique from their classmates.
Furthermore, this EDITABLE UNIT will provide you with the TOOLS and STRATEGIES for running highly engaging CLASSROOM DEBATES.
How Is a Debate Structured?
Debates occur in many different contexts, and these contexts can determine the specific structure the debate will follow.
Some contexts where debates will occur include legislative assemblies, public meetings, election campaigns, academic institutions, and TV shows.
While structures can differ, below is a basic step-by-step debate structure we can look at with our students. If students can debate to this structure, they will find adapting to other debate structures simple.
1. Choose a Topic
Also called a resolution or a motion, the topic is sometimes chosen for each side. This is usually the case in a school activity to practice debating skills.
Alternatively, as in the case of a political debate, two sides emerge naturally around contesting beliefs or values on a particular issue.
We’ll assume the debate is a school exercise for the rest of this article.
The resolution or the motion is usually centered around a true or false statement or a proposal to make some change in the current state of affairs. Often the motion will start, ”This House believes that….”
2. Form Two Teams
Two teams of three speakers each are formed. These are referred to as ‘The House for the Motion’ or the ‘Affirmative’ team and ‘The House Against the Motion’ or the ‘Negative’ team.
Preparation is an essential aspect of debating. The speech and debate team members will need time to research their arguments, collaborate, and organize themselves and their respective roles in the upcoming debate.
They’ll also need time to write and rehearse their speeches too. The better prepared and coordinated they are as a team, the more chance they have of success in the debate.
Each speaker takes a turn making their speech, alternating between the House for the Motion, who goes first, and the House Against the Motion. Each speaker speaks for a pre-agreed amount of time.
The debate is held in front of an audience (in this case, the class), and sometimes, the audience is given time to ask questions after all the speeches have been made.
Finally, the debate is judged either by moderators or by an audience vote.
The aim of the teams in a debate should be to convince a neutral third party that they hold the stronger position.
How to Write a Debate Speech
In some speech contest formats, students are only given the debate topic on the day, and limited time is allowed for preparation. Outside of this context, the speech writing process always begins with research.
Thorough research will help provide the student with both the arguments and the supporting evidence for those arguments.
Knowing how to research well is a skill that is too complex to cover in detail here. Fortunately, this site also has a detailed article on Top Research Strategies to help.
There are slight variations in the structure of debate speeches depending on when the speech is scheduled in the debate order. But, the structure and strategies outlined below are broadly applicable and will help students to write and deliver powerfully persuasive debate speeches.
The Debate Introduction
As with many types of text , the purpose of the introduction in a debate speech is to do several things: grab the attention of the audience, introduce the topic, provide a thesis statement, and preview some of the main arguments.
1. The Attention Grabber
Securing the attention of the audience is crucial. Failure to do this will have a strong, negative impact on how the team’s efforts will be scored as a whole.
There are several tried and tested methods of doing this. Three of the main attention grabbers that work well are:
a.) Quotation From a Well-Known Person
Using a quotation from a well-known person is a great way to draw eyeballs and ears in the speaker’s direction. People love celebrities, even if that celebrity is relatively minor.
Using a quotation to open a speech lends authority to what is being said. As well as that, usually, the quotation chosen will be worded concisely and interestingly, making it all the more memorable and impactful for the audience.
Numbers can be very convincing. There’s just something about quantifiable things that persuades people. Perhaps it’s because numbers help us to pin down abstract ideas and arguments.
The challenge here is for the speaker to successfully extract meaning from the data in such a way as to bolster the force of their argument.
c.) The Anecdote
Anecdotes can be a valuable way to ease the audience into a complex topic. Anecdotes are essentially stories and can be used to make complicated moral or ethical dilemmas more relatable for an audience.
Anecdotes are also an effective way for the speaker to build a rapport with the audience, which, in turn, makes the task of persuading them an easier one.
2. Introduce the Topic
Once the audience’s attention has been firmly grasped, it’s time to introduce the topic or the motion. This should be done in a very straightforward and transparent manner to ensure the audience understands the topic of the debate.
For example, if the topic of the debate was school uniforms, the topic may be introduced with:
“Today, we will debate whether school uniforms should be compulsory for all high school students.”
3. Provide the Thesis Statement
The thesis statement should express the student’s or the team’s position on the motion. That is, the thesis statement explains which side of the debate the speaker is on.
This statement can come directly after introducing the topic, for example:
“Today, we will debate whether school uniforms should be compulsory for all high school students. This house believes (or, I believe …) that school uniforms should not be compulsory for high school students.”
4. Preview the Arguments
The final part of the introduction section of a debate speech involves previewing the main points of the speech for the audience.
There is no need to go into detail with each argument here; that’s what the body of the speech is for. It is enough to provide a general thesis statement for each argument or ‘claims’ – (more on this to follow).
Previewing the arguments in a speech is especially important as the audience and judges only get one listen to a speech – unlike a text which can be reread as frequently as the reader likes.
After explaining the different types of attention grabbers and the format for the rest of the introduction to your students, challenge them to write an example of each type of opening for a specific debate topic.
When they’ve finished writing these speech openings, discuss with the students which of these openings works best with their chosen topic. They can then continue by completing the rest of the introduction for their speech using the format as described above.
Some suggested debate topics you might like to use with your class include:
- Homework should be banned
- National public service should be mandatory for every citizen
- The sale of human organs should be legalized
- Artificial intelligence is a threat to humanity
- Bottled water should be banned.
The Body of the Speech
The body paragraphs are the real meat of the speech. They contain the in-depth arguments that make up the substance of the debate.
How well these arguments are made will determine how the judges will assess each speaker’s performance, so it’s essential to get the structure of these arguments just right.
Let’s take a look at how to do that.
The Structure of an Argument
With the introduction out of the way, it’s time for the student to get down to the nitty-gritty of the debate – that is, making compelling arguments to support their case.
There are three main aspects to an argument in a debate speech. They are:
1. The Claim
2. The Warrant
3. The Impact
The first part of an argument is referred to as the claim. This is the assertion that the argument is attempting to prove.
The warrant is the evidence or reasoning used to verify or support that claim.
Finally, the impact describes why the claim is significant. It’s the part of the argument that deals with why it matters in the first place and what further conclusions we can draw from the fact that the claim is true.
Following this structure carefully enables our students to build coherent and robust arguments.
Present your students with a topic and, as a class, brainstorm some arguments for and against the motion.
Then, ask students to choose one argument and, using the Claim-Warrant-Impact format, take a few moments to write down a well-structured argument that’s up to debate standard.
Students can then present their arguments to the class.
Or, you could also divide the class along pro/con lines and host a mini-debate!
This speech section provides the speaker with one last opportunity to deliver their message.
In a timed formal debate, the conclusion also allows the speaker to show the judges that they can speak within the set time while still covering all their material.
As with conclusions in general, the conclusion of a debate speech provides an opportunity to refer back to the introduction and restate the central position.
At this point, it can be a good idea to summarize the arguments before ending with a powerful image that leaves a lasting impression on the audience and judges.
The Burden of the Rejoinder
In formal debates, the burden of the rejoinder means that any time an opponent makes a point for their side, it’s incumbent upon the student/team to address that point directly.
Failing to do so will automatically be seen as accepting the truth of the point made by the opponent.
For example, if the opposing side argues that all grass is pink, despite how ridiculous that statement is, failing to refute that point directly means that, for the debate, all grass is pink.
Our students must understand the burden of the rejoinder and ensure that any points the opposing team makes are fully addressed during the debate.
When preparing to write their speech, students should spend a significant proportion of their team collaborating as a team.
One good way to practice the burden of the rejoinder concept is to use the concept of Devil’s Advocate, whereby one team member acts as a member of the opposing team, posing arguments from the other side for the speaker to counter, sharpening up their refutation skills in the process.
OTHER GREAT ARTICLES RELATED TO DEBATING
The Ultimate Guide to Opinion Writing for Students and Teachers
Top 5 Persuasive Writing Techniques for Students
5 Top Persuasive Writing Lesson Plans for Students and Teachers
23 Persuasive writing Topics for High School students
How to Write Perfect Persuasive Essays in 5 Simple Steps
Debate: the keys to victory.
Research and preparation are essential to ensure good performance in a debate. Students should spend as much time as possible drafting and redrafting their speeches to maximize their chances of winning. However, a debate is a dynamic activity, and victory cannot be assured by pre-writing alone.
Students must understand that the key to securing victory lies in also being able to think, write (often in the form of notes), and respond instantly amid the turmoil of the verbal battle. To do this, students must understand the following keys to victory.
When we think of winning a debate, we often think of blinding the enemy with the brilliance of our verbal eloquence. We think of impressing the audience and the judges alike with our outstanding oratory.
What we don’t often picture when we imagine what a debate winner looks like is a quiet figure sitting and listening intently. But being a good listener is one of our students’ most critical debating skills.
If students don’t listen to the other side, whether by researching opposing arguments or during the thrust of the actual debate, they won’t know the arguments the other side is making. Without this knowledge, they cannot effectively refute the opposition’s claims.
Read the Audience
In terms of the writing that happens before the debate takes place, this means knowing your audience.
Students should learn that how they present their arguments may change according to the demographics of the audience and/or judges to whom they will be making their speech.
An audience of retired school teachers and an audience of teen students may have very different responses to the same arguments.
This applies during the actual debate itself too. If the student making their speech reads resistance in the faces of the listeners, they should be prepared to adapt their approach accordingly in mid-speech.
Practice, Practice, Practice
The student must practice their speech before the debate. There’s no need to learn it entirely by heart. There isn’t usually an expectation to memorize a speech entirely, and doing so can lead to the speaker losing some of their spontaneity and power in their delivery. At the same time, students shouldn’t spend the whole speech bent over a sheet of paper reading word by word.
Ideally, students should familiarize themselves with the content and be prepared to deliver their speech using flashcards as prompts when necessary.
Another important element for students to focus on when practising their speech is making their body language, facial expressions, and hand gestures coherent with the verbal content of their speech. One excellent way to achieve this is for the student to practice delivering their speech in a mirror.
Debating is a lot of fun to teach and partake in, but it also offers students a valuable opportunity to pick up some powerful life skills.
It helps students develop a knack for distinguishing fact from opinion and an ability to assess whether a source is credible or not. It also helps to encourage them to think about the other side of the argument.
Debating helps our students understand others, even when disagreeing with them. An important skill in these challenging times without a doubt.
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The content for this page has been written by Shane Mac Donnchaidh. A former principal of an international school and English university lecturer with 15 years of teaching and administration experience. Shane’s latest Book, The Complete Guide to Nonfiction Writing , can be found here. Editing and support for this article have been provided by the literacyideas team.
NO PREP REQUIRED A ready-made unit on Class Debating awaits you.
Debate Speech - Ultimate Writing Guide for Students
19 min read
Published on: Jan 25, 2019
Last updated on: Dec 18, 2022
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A debate speech is a structured argument about a particular topic. It is conducted according to the set of rules designed to give each team a fair chance. Therefore, following a proper structure in debate writing is essential for the debater and the audience.
Similarly, there are also some other methods to write an effective debate. By understanding them, you will increase the chances of your success. Moreover, setting a tone and correct word choice is also essential to grab the audience’s and judges’ attention.
We have drafted this detailed guide to help students with their debate speeches. Continue reading to get an idea about the complete format and template.
Debate Speech Definition
A debate speech is a formal discussion on a particular topic between two opposing sides. One side speaks in favor of the given topic, while the other one speaks against it. The main aim of a debate speech is to convince the audience that your opinion is right.
Also, the two main factors that determine the definition of a debate speech are:
- Context - It identifies the happenings in the area related to the topic.
- Spirit of the Motion - It tells how your debate is going to be.
It involves three basic elements given below.
- Logical consistency
- Factual accuracy
- Emotional appeal
Similarly, debate speech allows us to think about different perspectives and improves public speaking skills. It can further make you learn the basics of creating a persuasive argument.
Debate Speech Format
A debate speech format follows the below pattern.
Opening Statements and Clarification
This section includes the opening sentences by using three arguments along with clarifying questions.
- Pro Team - 5 minutes
- Con Team - 2 minutes
- Con Team - 5 minutes
- Pro Team - 2 minutes
Rebuttals (No New Arguments)
Here, the debaters repeat the opponent’s arguments and analyze what is wrong with his position.
- Pro Team - 3 minutes
- Con Team - 3 minutes
It allows the debaters to summarize their positions after detailed arguments with the opponents. Moreover, they will also explain why their position is the best.
Lastly, each team will be expected to answer the questions in a 20-minute long session.
Have a look at the below document to get an idea of the debate speech structure.
Debate Writing Speech Template
How to Start a Debate Speech?
Starting your debate in the right way will make your audience more interested. Thus, take enough time to prepare a solid opening that will help you win the debate.
Follow the below prewriting steps to start a debate speech.
Below given is a detailed description of these steps.
Begin with an Impressive Greeting
The first and foremost step is to start your debate speech with an amazing greeting. It is much more than a simple introduction of a topic and gives an idea of the main argument.
Similarly, it also alerts the audience on whether the debate speech is going to be interesting or not. Remember, a compelling greeting will help you gain maximum attention from the listeners.
An example of the greeting is stated below.
“A very cheerful good morning to all. Honorable juries/adjudicators, respected teachers, and my fellow competitors. Today I would like to light my views supporting (if you are in favor) /opposing (if you are against) the motion/topic (say your topic).”
Tell a Personal Story
You can also tell a personal story from your experiences. It will help you connect with the audience emotionally. Moreover, being authentic and genuine will also make your debate stand out.
“When I was a child growing up in rural England, I came to accept how clean and unpolluted it was. It was when I moved to the city where I enrolled in a University. Little did I realize that air pollution and excessive waste was a big problem…”
State an Amazing Fact
Stating the facts and statistical data will also grab the audience’s attention. Similarly, it can also improve your position by strengthening the arguments.
“The economy does not work for everyone. The average person in the UK only has 12 weeks’ worth of their income saved in the bank…”
Use a Powerful Quotation
You can also summarize a topic or idea by using the words of other people. It is a great way to add weight and reputation to your argument.
“Over the last 20 years, the number of people who are keenly changing their diet is steadily on the rise. Ellen DeGeneres notably became a vegan, as she said in her own words after seeing “footage of what goes on in the slaughterhouses and on the dairy farm.” The notion that eating meat is becoming less important…”
Ask a Rhetorical Question
Starting a debate speech with a question will engage people and make them think in a specific mind frame.
“Have you ever wondered how important the ocean is in our lives? The oceans provide half the oxygen we breathe and feed more than 2 billion people each day…”
State a Problem
A debater can give a clear picture of the main argument by stating a problem.
“The internet is a danger to society. It’s clear that our global civilization is coming of age. We are communicating faster, doing business quicker, and learning volumes.
Even the trade in black market goods and services is not diminishing. What we choose to do with the internet can change the world.”
Share Your Opinion About the Topic
Lastly, a debater must share his opinion on the topic while starting a debate speech. It will help the audience to comprehend the side we are going to argue about.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to talk to you today about exams. The exam system that we have followed is the British system has been reformed many times. A big exam at the age of eleven determined a child’s whole future.
Here, I will argue that the problem is that exams, besides being stressful, are ineffective in assessing student learning.”
Refer to the example to learn more about how to start a debate speech 1st speaker.
Debate Speech Example for 1st Speaker
How to Write a Debate Speech?
Follow the steps given below to write a debate speech.
Understand the Debate Speech
Understanding the debate speech and its nature is the first step in the writing process. Here, both the opposing teams will be given a topic. Choose the stance, either affirmative or negative, to the resolution.
Sometimes you will be given a stance, and other times you will be asked to take a position. Also, select the types of debate that you want to pursue. It can be a team policy debate, cross-examination, or parliamentary debating.
Research the Topic Thoroughly
The next step is to brainstorm and research the topic thoroughly. It will help you understand all the aspects of the resolution to write a perfect speech.
Make a list of the key points on both sides of the topic. Try to cover each in your debate speech. However, make sure to use credible sources such as newspapers, books, and scholarly journals.
Also, do not ignore the counter-arguments as they can weaken your debate.
Develop a Debate Speech Outline
Develop an outline for your debate speech to organize your main ideas. A basic speech outline consists of three main sections, i.e., introduction, body, and conclusion.
A detailed explanation of these sections is given below.
Debate Speech Introduction: It is the first section of a debate outline. Below are the four main parts that must be included in a debate speech introduction.
- An Attention Grabber: It is an interesting first sentence to grab the audience’s attention. Examples may contain a fact, quote, question, or story.
- Open the Debate: Open your debate by introducing a topic and make a clear statement to identify your position. It can be in favor of or against the issue under discussion. Here, the debaters should also define and explain difficult debate terms that the audience needs to understand.
- Present the Context: Present the context of your debate speech with the help of a thesis statement . It will clearly explain your position on the topic and which side you are supporting. Furthermore, you can also discuss any real-life experiences that can relate to the topic.
- Provide an Overview of Your Arguments: Briefly state your arguments to help the audience understand the direction of your speech. However, do not explain the arguments in this section. Also, use transitions so that the major argument does not merge in the middle of a speech.
The example of a debate speech introduction is given below.
Debate Speech Body Paragraphs
The body paragraphs are the main section of your debate speech. Here the judges will take notes of your significant arguments to compare them with the opponents at the end.
Each paragraph must include a statement to discuss the ideas that you want to make. Also, add a reason to support your thesis and explain more about the argument. However, do not forget to add evidence from credible sources to strengthen your argument.
Finally, explain the significance of your argument. It should discuss why the argument is important to the debaters and the judges. Moreover, it must also provide logical reasoning for the audience to choose your side.
Below is an example of a debate speech body paragraph.
Debate Speech Conclusion
The conclusion of your debate speech is the last chance to demonstrate the major arguments. It includes an attention-grabbing sentence and a thesis statement that connects the entire speech. Also, summarize the main body by adding emotion and drama to our words.
It is good to conclude your speech & debate with a message or quote that clarifies your position and arguments to the judges. Finally, add a closing sentence similar to the attention grabber to leave a lasting impression on the audience.
The following is an example of a good debate speech conclusion.
Structure for Debate Speech
Writing the Debate Speech
After deciding on the outline format, start writing the final draft of your debate. It is better to combine the elements of persuasion to explain the effects of the topic in real life. These are:
- Logos (persuasion by reasoning)
- Pathos (emotional appeal)
- Ethos (appeal based on the character of a speaker)
Furthermore, use transition words to maintain a logical flow between arguments. Never make the mistake of copying information from any other source. It is the best tip to avoid plagiarism.
Lastly, edit and proofread your work to identify any common errors. It may include grammatical, punctuation, and spelling mistakes.
You can also hire a professional proofreader or ask your friends or colleagues to proofread it. This is how you will be able to produce an amazing debate speech.
How to End a Debate Speech?
It is better to end your debate speech by identifying whether you have incorporated all the elements. Here is a checklist for you to access your speech with the help of the following questions.
- Does your debate speech begin with an impressive greeting?
- Have you written the original content in your debate essay?
- Have you provided personal experiences and a call to action to impress the judges?
- Do your speech and debate follow a proper format structure?
- Have you stated your opinion about the topic?
- Does it specify the correct types of debate that you want to pursue?
- Have you referred to a well-known book or movie?
- Do your arguments follow a restricted time limit?
- Have you proofread and revise your speech for punctuation, spelling, and grammar mistakes?
- Have you used an impressive sentence structure?
- Have you maintained consistency and logical flow between the arguments?
Follow these debating techniques to write a perfect one in no time. Check the example for a detailed understanding of the concept.
Examples to End a Debate Speech
Debate Speech Examples
The following are some debate speech samples and examples for you to get a better idea.
Sample for Debate Speech
Example for Debate Speech
Debate Speech Text Example
Debate Speech Example - Second Speaker
Debate Speech Example - Last Speaker
Get more debate examples by going through our blog.
Debate Speech Topics
Here are some unique topic ideas for you to write a debate on.
- Credit cards are more harmful than debit cards.
- We are becoming too dependent on technology.
- Marriage is an outdated concept.
- Homework is necessary with regard to the learning process.
- Being a college graduate in the United States is necessary for a successful career.
- It is a good idea to have laptops in classrooms.
- Facebook is a better social platform than Twitter.
- Cell phones can be used as educational tools.
- Junk food must be banned in high schools and colleges.
- The Prime minister of any state enjoys more power than the president.
If you are looking for more ideas, here is a list of interesting debate topics .
The Key to Winning a Debate
To do well in a debate, you need to research and prepare. This means spending a lot of time writing and rewriting your speeches.
However, you can't just prewrite everything and expect to win. You also need to be able to think on your feet, write quickly, and respond promptly if you want to win.
To do this, you need to understand the keys to victory.
Always Listen to the Opponent Carefully
Being a good listener is one of the most important debating skills our students can have. When we think of winning a debate, we often think of dazzling the audience with our brilliance. But, being quiet and listening to others is often more important.
If students do not listen to the other side, they will not know what the other side is saying. They will not be able to refute the claims of the opposition effectively if they do not know what those claims are.
Understand the Audience
Before giving a speech, it is important to know who your audience is. Students should learn that the way they present their arguments may be different depending on the demographics of the audience and/or the judges they will be speaking to.
People who have retired from teaching and people who are still in school might have different reactions to the same arguments. This is also true during a debate.
If the person giving the speech sees that the listeners are not reacting well, they should change their approach during the speech.
Practice is the Key to Success
The students should practice their speech before the debate. There is no need to learn it by heart entirely.
Usually, there is no expectation to memorize a speech entirely. Doing so can lead to the speaker losing some of their spontaneity and power in their delivery. However, students should not spend the whole speech reading off a piece of paper word by word.
Students should be familiar with the content of their speech and use flashcards as prompts if necessary.
They should also focus on making their body language, facial expressions, and hand gestures coherent with the verbal content of their speech. One way to do this is to practice delivering their speech in front of a mirror.
The above guide will help you understand the writing process of a debate speech. But, despite that, not everyone can draft perfect content. Therefore, many students end up taking writing help online.
However, due to a lack of resources, they often get stuck with unprofessional services. Most of them offer low-quality content at cheap prices.
If you are tired of these online scams, go for our legit essay writing service . MyPerfectWords.com guarantees the best service and top-quality debates at budget-friendly rates.
Similarly, the expert writers have years of experience to deliver the work within the given deadline. They will also help you to choose engaging speech and debate topics.
Avail of reliable debate writing help by placing your order now.
Cathy A. (Literature, Marketing)
Cathy has been been working as an author on our platform for over five years now. She has a Masters degree in mass communication and is well-versed in the art of writing. Cathy is a professional who takes her work seriously and is widely appreciated by clients for her excellent writing skills.
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How to Begin a Debate
Last Updated: September 16, 2022 References Approved
This article was co-authored by Lynn Kirkham . Lynn Kirkham is a Professional Public Speaker and Founder of Yes You Can Speak, a San Francisco Bay Area-based public speaking educational business empowering thousands of professionals to take command of whatever stage they've been given - from job interviews, boardroom talks to TEDx and large conference platforms. Lynn was chosen as the official TEDx Berkeley speaker coach for the last four years and has worked with executives at Google, Facebook, Intuit, Genentech, Intel, VMware, and others. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 51 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 848,420 times.
Opening a debate the right way will make your audience more interested and help you win your argument. Before your debate , take the time to prepare a solid opening that will win people over.
Grabbing the Audience's Attention
- Your story should capture the essence of your debate . It could explore, for example, the challenges you have faced in relation to the topic, how you overcame these challenges, and the lessons you learned.
- For example, "As a person who suffers from seizures, medical marijuana was a saving grace. My family and I had to move across to the country in order for me to get treated, but it was worth the risk. My seizures decreased from five seizures a day to only one seizure per week."
- Make sure that the story comes from your heart rather than your head. If you're just regurgitating a story from memory, it's not going to land with the audience.
- You can ask, for example, “Would you like to see a loved one suffer for no reason at all?”
- You can say, for example, “A billion tons of plastic are floating in the ocean right now. That is enough plastic to make an island the size of Hawaii.” Then, proceed to talk about the issue and explain to your audience why your resolution is the best one.
- For example, imagine you are giving a speech on why you think higher education is unnecessary for succeeding in life. You could open with, “Mark Twain once said, ‘Don’t let school interfere with your education.’”
- Make sure that quote comes from your heart and feels authentic. It must speak to you and your audience while also making a point.
- For example, if you are arguing that climate change is real, show a before and after picture of a glacier that has been affected by excessive amounts of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Beginning the Debate
- Identify the key terms in your argument and look up their definitions in a range of dictionaries. Choose the most appropriate definition for each word. You want to pick a definition that is neutral and conventional.
- Your definitions can be literal, as well as contextualized. Contextualized definitions add examples of how the concept applies to the real world. For example, a contextualized definition of money would show that money is used to buy services, such as food and gas.
- For example, “My team and I will show you the need, practicality, and benefits of medicinal marijuana. Together we will show that thousands of patients, including young children, who suffer from seizures, find relief in medicinal marijuana. Studies show that medicinal marijuana reduces instances of seizures by 80%. Furthermore, the side effects of medicinal marijuana are not as severe as the side effects that come with conventional forms of medication used to treat seizures, particularly for children. We will show that medicinal marijuana is a practical, safe, and cost-effective solution for patients and their families.”
- In order to demonstrate that your team's policy will work, use policies that have already been enacted as the basis of your policy. For example, you can highlight that a ban on using cellphones while driving is similar to the ban on drinking while driving.
- Try to focus on three important reasons for why the policy is needed or needs to change.  X Research source
Presenting the Debate
- Greet your audience by saying, “Good morning faculty and staff. The topic of today’s debate is student parking,” or “Good morning teachers and students. Thank you for taking the time to come to this debate. Today, the topic is student parking.”
- State what your side is arguing by saying, “We believe enrolled students should not have to pay for a parking pass to park on campus,” or “We believe enrolled students should pay for a parking pass to park on campus.”
- Explain the speakers' roles by saying, “As the first speaker, I will be defining key terms and outlining our main argument. Our second speaker will explain the supporting reasons for our argument, and our third speaker will summarize our argument.”
- Remember to maintain eye contact with an audience at the end of a sentence.
- Hold eye contact with an individual for only three to five seconds, then move on to someone else.
- Practice holding eye contact with someone you know for a minute or two. Repeat the exercise 5 or 6 times—that will really help a lot.
- Also, remember to take pauses. Pauses allow you to catch your breath and plan what you will say next. They also allow your audience to process what you have just said.
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- Give yourself a pep talk by looking at yourself in the mirror. Tell yourself that you're awesome, that you're a great speaker, that you believe in yourself, and that you appreciate yourself. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 12 Not Helpful 4
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- ↑ http://business.financialpost.com/business-insider/7-excellent-ways-to-start-a-presentation-and-capture-your-audiences-attention
- ↑ http://sixminutes.dlugan.com/speech-quotes/
- ↑ http://debatesociety.tripod.com/mcds10.html
- ↑ http://debatesociety.tripod.com/mcds10.html#procedure
- ↑ http://www.speakingaboutpresenting.com/delivery/tips-eye-contact/
- ↑ http://www.speakingaboutpresenting.com/delivery/dont-slow-down-effective-presenter/
About This Article
The best way to start a debate is to open with a bold rhetorical question, a touching personal story that’s relevant to your argument, or a shocking statistic. Once you have your audience’s attention, define the key terms you’ll be using in your debate and summarize your case. For tips on presenting your argument, like how long to maintain eye contact with audience members, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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How to Start an Introduction for a Debate
The art of the debate is something that has been practiced among people for centuries. Like any performance or conversation though, the introduction to a debate is the most important part. Your introduction grabs your audience and gets their attention. As such, it should be one of the most thought out parts of your argument.
Research your part of the debate. Say for instance you are arguing for stricter gun control. You should already have your statistics on gun ownership, reasoning for stricter controls and what benefits that should have, and counter arguments against your opposition's likely points prepared before you sit down to work on your introduction.
Examine your points carefully. Your introduction should take the best points you prepared in your debate, without actually using them up front. For example, if you were opening a debate for gay marriage on the pro side, you should mention broad points, such as the idea of equal rights. You should not include specific numbers in your introduction.
Write your introduction. It should include a statement of your purpose and view on the debate, as well as list broad, persuasive points. The language used should be appealing to your target audience, and your introduction should be as brief as possible, taking no more than 20-30 seconds to read aloud.
Test your introduction on a target audience. Find someone outside of your research and ask them to read it, or to listen to you read it. Ask them for feedback. Find out what parts of the introduction work, if the language is right, and if the tone is proper. Then revise your introduction, and try it again.
Once your introduction has been revised, revamped, and tested on other people, it's ready to be read. Care should be taken that every part of your debate undergoes the same treatment as the introduction, otherwise your audience will be sucked in by a false promise.
Neal Litherland is an author, blogger and occasional ghostwriter. His experience includes comics, role playing games and a variety of other projects as well. He holds a bachelor's degree in criminal justice from Indiana University, and resides in Northwest Indiana.
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How to Make an Introduction Paragraph for a Debate
Oubria tronshaw, 21 aug 2018.
Debates provide a forum for individuals to logically examine opposing sides of an argument. During a debate, one person takes the affirmative or is in agreement with the issue. Another person takes the negative side and offers a solid disagreement with the issue. The introduction paragraph to a debate is crucial. It's your first opportunity to grab the audience's attention and help them see the issue from your point of view whether that is positive or negative viewpoint. Formulate your intro so that even if the audience doesn't hear another word, they'll know where you stand.
Explore this article
- Researching Debate Speech Topic
- Investigating The Debate Speech Argument
- Writing the Introduction
- Researching Supporting Facts
- Ask for Introduction Review
- Giving the Debate Introduction
1 Researching Debate Speech Topic
After choosing your debate speech topic and the side of the issue you will take, the next step is to research it thoroughly. When researching use everything at your disposal including the Internet, library books and periodicals, media footage and personal interviews. While you are researching, take notes on your research findings. Think about your topic in present-day terms and find a way to connect to the subject in a way that means something to you personally.
2 Investigating The Debate Speech Argument
After conducting your research, next investigate both sides of the argument. While you may only have a strong feeling on one side, looking at both arguments helps make your debate speech presentation stronger. Search for holes in both theories so you'll be prepared to take either the affirmative or the negative. You'll want to use logical and not emotional arguments to support your case.
3 Writing the Introduction
Next, begin the debate paragraph introduction with what you consider to be the most solid fact that supports your case. Great ways to start a speech can include this strong research. For example, if you're arguing that condoms should be issued in middle school health classes and your research revealed 30 percent of teen pregnancies occur in middle school, start there. Grab the audience's attention by stating the most compelling part of your research right away in the opening paragraph. That strong opener is a great way to start a speech but especially a debate speech.
4 Researching Supporting Facts
After you begin writing the introduction, consider additional facts from your research to explain to the audience what will happen if your argument is not heeded. For example, if you're arguing for stricter parole requirements for child molesters, statistics the number of child molesters released on early parole that go on to be repeat offenders would be a compelling fact to include. Read your introduction paragraph, but pretend you're on the other side of the argument. Strengthen any weaknesses in your reasoning.
5 Ask for Introduction Review
Before giving your debate speech, show your introduction paragraph to someone else like your debate coach, a peer, teacher, mentor or parent. After they've read that introduction paragraph and the supporting debate speech, ask for their opinions on the content. Consider their suggestions and revise your introduction accordingly.
6 Giving the Debate Introduction
When it comes time to present the debate speech, make sure you also consider how you present the information. Other debate strategies include speaking clearly when delivering your introduction to the audience. Another strong strategy to keep in mind is to make eye contact. This shows your audience that you're speaking from your convictions, rather than simply reading something you wrote.
- 1 Seattle Pi: How to Write a Good Argumentative Essay Introduction
- 2 University of Maryland University College: Writing Arguments
About the Author
Oubria Tronshaw specializes in topics related to parenting and business. She received a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from the Santa Fe University of Art and Design, and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Chicago State University. She currently teaches English at Harper Community College in the Chicago area.
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Writing an Introduction
Introductions matter. Make a lasting first impression that informs your audience on the issue, your personality, and stating a clear position on the topic. Start watching the video below to get started!
Review the material below about writing introductions!
Hook . 1-2 sentences that grab the audience’s attention. hooks preview the topic and connects the unfamiliar subject matter with a familiar context..
Types of hooks
1. The fact/statistic hook . These are especially great if they draw from current events.
Example : “On March 16, a series of mass shootings targeting several massage parlors in Atlanta triggered warnings across of anti-Asian sentiment and a call to action to…”
2. Strong statement/declaration hook . Lead with a strong declaration.
Example : “Homeless people in major cities are currently being treated as objects – or perhaps worse, trash. Major cities across America must enact policy to immediately address the issue of homelessness…”
3. Interesting/Rhetorical question hook. Try to make the audience think.
Example: “Why are Americans becoming conditioned to accepting that school shootings are the new normal?”
4. The story hook. Tell a short story!
Example: “When I was young, my mother always told me one thing: if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all. Hate speech across college campuses in America is…”
5. The quotation hook. These do become quite cliché, but may work.
Example: Martin Luther King once said that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
Context . Establish relevant information for the topic.
Thesis . one sentence statement that clearly states your position on the topic and previews the arguments made in the speech..
Hook: Antiquated, unsustainable, and ill-prepared energy grids plague America. On February 10, three severe winter storms caused Texas’ isolated power grid to go dark for millions of people across the state, causing shortages in food, water, and heat.
This begins with a strong statement/declaration and follows it up with a fact based on current events.
Context: According to a Reuters fact check on February 19, “coal, gas and nuclear [energy], lost nearly twice as much power than renewable energy sources, which contributed to just 13% of the power outages”. This points out to the fact that the world continues to face consequences of global warming. We must not only update our outdated systems in preparation, but further make sustainable systems to combat climate change.
This context draws from news reports to frame the topic to focus on the failure of coal energy among others.
Thesis: Thus, the United States Federal Government should move towards banning coal power plants as coal energy the major contributor to pollution, causing losses to our environment, health, and economy.
This thesis clearly states the plan and previews the major arguments.
Timing. Typical introductions should occupy less than 20% of your speech time. For example, for a 3-minute speech, the introduction should be 30 to 45 seconds.
Transitions . Essential. Between every sentence and paragraph, there should be a transition which allows the sentences to flow together and provide a crystal-clear structure for the listeners.
Composing a debate introduction depends on whether or not a person is the moderator, proposer or opposition. Opening statements for individuals who are not leading the debate usually include positive or negative marks.
Debate is important because it helps people develop skills that enable them to be more engaged citizens, discuss current political and global issues, understand opposing views, cooperate with others, make informed decisions and think critic...
The desirable qualities of a good debater include the ability to speak clearly, think quickly, clarify arguments, provide examples, maintain persuasive speech, and maintain a professional tone and body language.
How To Start A Debate Greeting (Examples) · Good morning to all of you present here. · Good morning respected jury members, teachers and my dear
As with many types of text, the purpose of the introduction in a debate speech is to do several things: grab the attention of the audience
“A very cheerful good morning to all. Honorable juries/adjudicators, respected teachers, and my fellow competitors. Today I would like to light
Write an introduction that is catchy and interesting. You want to introduce your topic very clearly and concisely right at the beginning of the debate speech.
You can say, for example, “A billion tons of plastic are floating in the ocean right now. That is enough plastic to make an island the size of Hawaii.” Then
Write your introduction. It should include a statement of your purpose and view on the debate, as well as list broad, persuasive points.
1. Understand the topic and choose a side. · 2. Prepare statistics and analysis to support your argument. · 3. Begin writing your introduction. · 4. Include a
The introduction paragraph to a debate is crucial. It's your first opportunity to grab the audience's attention and help them see the issue from
This short video provides seven steps to assist when writing a debate. It is a follow up to the previous video 'How to run a debate'.
I'm sorry to interrupt, but you've misunderstood our point.- Excuse me, but that's not quite correct.- Sorry, I just have to disagree with your point.- Let me
Structure breakdown · Hook. 1-2 sentences that grab the audience's attention. · Context. Establish relevant information for the topic. · Thesis. One sentence