Wendy and I consider ourselves a “speech and debate family,” meaning we structure much of our lives around speech and debate. It’s a wonderful life! Watch my YouTube Video on the Five Fundamentals of a Speech and Debate Family.
- Parents Are Actively Involved
I have taught speech and debate in public schools, and it is rare to have a parent involved (it’s possible, but it’s rare).
- The Activity Is Central
Families (especially large ones like mine) choose their activities wisely. Think “soccer moms” — the activity for those families is soccer. The Speech and Debate Family’s activity is speech and debate, of course. All our discussions are filled with speech and debate talk.
- The Family Invests In Opportunity
Again, like any family activity, we invest in speech and debate. We buy suits for competition, we travel, we take time off work to help at tournaments, etc.
- The Family Members Love Each Other
It is not uncommon, unfortunately, to have siblings grow up in a fighting atmosphere, and you’d think “debaters” would carry that over. Not so! It is common in the speech and debate family to have brothers and sisters team up as debate or duo partner.
- An Eternal Vision Is Understood
By “eternal” I mean “beyond now.” There is something more valuable here than just getting up and giving speeches, or just receiving awards. A common theme at family-focused speech and debate tournaments is “it’s not about the trophies!” That’s true. It’s more about character development, about camaraderie, about educational stuff.
These are my five ideas. Can you add to this list? Leave your comment below…