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Mountain Star

Speech and Debate Season Begins

J Scott, copy editor/staff writer

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With the end of the year approaching, one of our many teams at SVHS feel excited to begin their season.

SPEECHIES ASSEMBLE: Potential speech team members pack coach Johnson’s room for the first team meeting of the season.

Mrs. Johnson says the group that gathered her her opening meeting on Weds, Nov 8th, was the biggest group ever. She said,

Mrs. Johnson Is Excited For This Year!

“I’m super stoked. We had around 40 people, and if even half of those people choose to go through with joining we’ll have the biggest team in Star Valley history.”

Q: How would you describe speech and debate to someone who has no clue what it is?

“It is the most awesome opportunity to learn how to communicate.”

And this description would be accurate. Speech and Debate is divided into two categories. Speech and Debate.

Debate is divided into three primary types of debate. There is Lincoln Douglas debate, where opponents face off against each other  in a battle of knowledge to prove who is correct. Public Forum is another form of debate, and it is very similar to Lincoln Douglas, but this time instead of going it alone alone, struggling to prove that you are correct, competitors have a buddy to help out.

The third and final type of debate is Congressional debate. In this event, a couple dozen teenagers are shepherded into a room, and they form a mock congress to discuss passing bills that the students themselves have written. In the process they prove that a group of high schoolers can run our government better than a couple hundred adults.

Speech itself is divided into two categories, Oratory and Interpretive. The difference between the two is that in Oratory you present a piece that you yourself have written. In Interpretive events, you perform a piece that is already published by someone else.

In Oratory, there are four different kinds. The first is Original Oratory. In this event, you write a short essay about a topic that interests you and you try to convince the audience that it is the most important thing in the entire world.

Connected to Oratory, there is Informational speaking. This is where you write an essay that is meant to inform the audience about something you find interesting. Informational speaking is the only event where you are allowed to use props to help entertain the audience.

There is Expository speaking involves a random topic about almost anything, but usually political stuff, and  thirty minutes to write a ten minute speech about that topic. Tied to that is Impromptu, which is basically Expository but instead of getting thirty minutes to prep, you get around five.

In Interpretive, there are x events. The first is Humorous Interpretation. This is where you perform a published piece with the intent of making your audience laugh. Basically, you act like you have multiple personality disorder for a little under ten minutes.

The opposite of Humor is Dramatic Interpretation. Like Humor, you perform a published piece, but this time you do it with a more serious tone, and maybe even try to get the audience to cry. Basically, you act like you have crippling depression for a little under ten minutes.

Then there is Duo Interpretation. Duo interpretation is what you get when you take Humor and Drama together in a blender, and add another person into the mix. Two people perform Duo, and they present a published piece. It can be funny, it can be sad, or it could be a little bit of both.

The final event of the Interpretive category is Poetry. In Poetry, you pick a collection of published poems, and you present them all together to leave a lasting impression on the audience. Students at SVHS who were here last year probably remember when Justin “Gubby” Johnson presented his poetry piece, the same piece that won him State.

Speech and Debate is a weird place with a bunch of different activities. If any student is still interested in joining speech and debate, talk to coach Johnson or captains, Madison Brigham or Remington Roberts.

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The student news site of Star Valley High School
Speech and Debate Season Begins