Elementary School Labs

Who can enroll?

 Any student who is entering 4th, 5th, or 6th grade in the Fall 2019 academic year can enroll to be in the elementary school debate lab.


What is the Curriculum?

Elementary School debate at the George Mason Debate Institute is considered one of the class sections for the Public Forum debate lab, but their curriculum is tailored to their age. The topic chosen for the camp is normally meant to encourage student participation and interest, and less focus is given to research skills development. More focus is given to persuasive speaking experience and learning the form of debate. Students in the middle school and elementary school labs for public forum have shorter class periods and have a recess during the guest lecture section of the day. 


"Public Forum debate involves opposing teams of two, debating a topic concerning a current event. Proceeding a coin toss, the winners choose which side to debate (PRO or CON) or which speaker position they prefer (1st or 2nd), and the other team receives the remaining option. Students present cases, engage in rebuttal and refutation, and also participate in a “crossfire” (similar to a cross examination) with the opportunity to question the opposing team. Often times community members are recruited to judge this event."

National Speech and Debate Association

Debate Institute