Be a Pioneer! Try Biblical Thematic (or Any New Speech Event)

New Speech Events come along now and then. Some students want to sit back and watch and figure it out. Although that is a fine technique to use, I say, “Be a Pioneer! Get messy! Take chances!” Yes, I have watched a lot of Magic School Bus throughout the years, and I have learned valuable lessons from Ms. Frizzle and gang…

DO be a Ms. Frizzle – Take chances, get messy! Why not? Explore the category for yourself (or with your family), especially if it’s never been done. Talk about it. The more you talk, the more ideas will come! Go to a workshop on it, TONIGHT we have a Biblical Thematic Workshop where we will cover the ideas and things you can do in this event. If you can’t make it – look for the recording.

DON’T be an Arnold – Wishing you would have stayed home, is not going to enhance your speech and debate skills. You have the opportunity to learn new things, as well as be a better communicator. How cool is that!?

DO be a Dorothy Ann – Dorothy Ann always has her book with her. She knows the rules inside and out! Make sure you are coming at the new event by fulling understanding the rules first.

DON’T be a Phoebe – There is no reason to compare things to your “old school,” or events that happened in the past. This is a new year! Jump in and do this! Wishing things were different, isn’t going to make it so. Be in the NOW and try to find things you like about the event and run with that. Being negative and unwilling to explore the possibilities will leave you in the dust. Remember, there is growth in everything, even if you feel uncomfortable at first.

DO be a Ralph – Ralph always puts a smile on my face. He is making the most out of the situation and having fun with it! Remember to find the joy in new events – this can help you go a long way!

All of these examples can be applied to new speech events… whether they are completely brand new to the league you are in, or you are trying an event for the first time. Join Lasting Impact! through our articles, video workshops or live workshops. We want to help you explore YOUR potential through speech and debate. And remember, You Got This!

Public Speaking Scholarship Opportunities By: Rebecca Frazer

“Remember, there is $10,000 riding on this speech. Don’t—mess—up.”
I stared at the contest administrator wide-eyed. Was that advice supposed to be helpful? Giving a speech with $10,000 riding on it already felt like the most nerve-wracking competitive experience of my life… But it was also amazing!!

Did you know you can give speeches for scholarship money? In the busyness that often defines high school, many skilled communicators neglect incredible opportunities to hone their public speaking skills while earning money for college. Yet a number of public speaking scholarships are out there just waiting to be contested. In this article, I’ll tell you about 5 amazing speech scholarship opportunities and share some valuable tips on how to succeed at them…

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Guest Post: The Importance of Words

As I sit here, the week after a major national competition, I am reminded of a speech I heard ONCE! A speech that made an impact on me about “words”. I wonder how many words were spoken through speech and debate last week at the NCFCA National Championship? I wonder how many students cried after they didn’t advance and they now think that their words have no more purpose? Or how many students were disappointed after making it to finals, yet not presenting their speech in The Showcase Of Excellence? This journey does not have to be over!! I am here to tell you… this is just the beginning! Your words and speeches can continue! You can continue to have a lasting impact… all you have to do is find another opportunity to share your heart, your message, your words…

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One Year Later… My Remembrances in Speech and Debate By: Kaitlyn Butts

One year ago, I was working hours each day to prepare for the 2017 NCFCA National Championship. Each day I gave impromptus, studied my apologetics cards, read the news, brushed up on my platform speeches, honed my LD cases, perfected my arguments, and researched outside cases in the Moot Court packet. It’s been seven years since I attended my first tournament and nearly one year since I became the NCFCA sweepstakes champion. My freshman year of college has stretched, challenged, and grown me in ways the girl who walked across that stage couldn’t have imagined. My tangible awards are on the shelves and stuffed in the drawers of my room… they collected a lot of dust while I was away. I understand that it could be easy to assume that I remember my time in NCFCA through the lens of my successes, but I’ve had a year to reflect. I want to share what I still hold near to my heart as I look back. These lasting memories shape who I am and how I coach current and future competitors. These are my remembrances…

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What is a Speech and Debate Champion? By: Abby Wright

Abby Wright knows what it is like to be a champion. She is a two time NCFCA champion, not just for one event, but two. She is the NCFCA 2015 After Dinner Speaking Champion and the 2017 Persuasive Champion. Here is her perspective on what it means to her to be a “National Champion.”

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Being a Communicator for Christ by: Abbey Lovett

What does it mean to be a good communicator for Christ? So many organizations, speech and debate leagues, coaching companies, etc all share a mission statement along the lines of “training up communicators for Christ”. But what does that actually mean? Join Abbey Lovett as she explores what this means… Abbey is a National Champion speaker, has created her own communication consulting firm- Lyceum Communications, and on top of all that- she coaches for Lasting Impact!… Remember there is still time to sign up for Abbey’s Storytelling Workshop (part of the Lasting Impact! Workshops Series)… For more info. CLICK HERE.

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Speech and Debate- Coaching versus Mentoring


I get asked all the time, how did I start coaching, what is the process I use to coach, etc. Although I consider myself a "Speech Coach", I actually think I am more of a "Mentor". Lately I have been analyzing the difference between coaching and mentoring, and what approach I have, so that I can help you become a better coach (or mentor). Maybe what I do is more of a hybrid method...

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Guest Blog: Grappling with Grendel: Seeking Growth above Trophies

I had the priveledge of coaching and working with Alexander Kidd (along with the other amazing members of his club in Ohio) this past year, and specifically witnessing his speech journey. I asked him to share what he learned this year. As you are grappling with what events to participate in, I hope you take heart Alexander’s message….

From my first days as a Speech and Debate competitor, I considered myself, first and foremost, a debater. My categorization of speeches could be generally understood as follows:

1. interps are great for amusement (from the Latin: a + musa or without thought).

2. platforms are not for me.

3. limited preps are worth doing to avoid timing them.

Perhaps, I overstate my mindset, nevertheless, I most certainly viewed speech as something to pass the time between debate rounds. Yet this past year, which also happened to be my senior year, I had something of a mindset switch. Now please don’t misunderstand me, none of this new revelation in anyway dampened my passion for debate. But it did cause me to view my involvement in Speech and Debate through a different lens.

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Your Season’s Over… Now What?

For some competitors the last Qualifier or Regionals may be their last stop in their "Speech Journey". Other students might have the opportunity to compete at a National Championship. Regardless of when the competition ends... It will end, and the season will be over. Now what? Not everyone can walk away a "champion". In fact, when you think about it- the riding off into the sunset with a first place trophy at Nationals doesn't happen to everyone. But is this why you started this journey in the first place- a big trophy? Were you motivated to learn about a certain subject? Did you have something to share? I challenge you to remember where the journey started and why...Where did your Speech begin? Why did you write it?

Your Speech does not have to stop at your last Qualifier, Regionals, or even Nationals! Was your Speech only made for competition? I doubt it! I bet there are many audiences that would benefit from hearing your Speech!

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