Blood, Sweat, and Tears: Five Best Tips for Platform Speech Writing by: Rebecca Frazer

It’s that time of year—time for writing, re-writing, and honing speeches for competition. As an avid fan of the platform speech, I wrote and delivered nine platform speeches in four different platform categories during my years in speech and debate competition. By the end of it all, I’d learned that quality speech-writing takes an intense cognitive and emotional investment, somewhat akin to Churchill’s description of blood, sweat, and tears. We all can benefit from the encouragement of those who have been there before. So for all you hard-working speech writers out there, here are five pro-tips to aid your master process:

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One Week until… Online Extemp

Extemporaneous is one of those Speech categories that after students graduate… they WISH they would have done it. Don’t let this opportunity for THIS season to YOUR season to give Extemp a try! Join our Lasting Impact! Online Extemp Group!

Guest contributor Drew Magness, 2018 NCFCA Extemporaneous Speaking Champion and Ace Peak Coach, shared this with me, “Most people view Extemporaneous speaking as a hopelessly complicated event reserved for the “smarter” people. Luckily, that’s not true. Let’s dispel the most common myth surrounding extemp.

Myth – I need to be a current events nerd.

Most of the best extempers out there didn’t get where they are by knowing everything about Zimbabwe’s electoral process, Japan’s disarmament history, or the legal standing of American Samoa. They climbed the mountain by learning how to process, condense, and communicate complex information. Extemp speeches don’t fall flat because the competitor is missing a robust history of the African Union. The most common failure is a failure to be understood. A background in current events will be helpful; knowledge is always good. But the keys to extemp are: Process, condense, communicate.”

Sam Wooddell, Stoa’s 2018 TP Champion, participated in Extemp for three years, he said this, “Extemporaneous speaking may help students fulfill their role as informed citizens by educating them on current events. Simultaneously, it teaches speakers critical thinking skills in high pressure situations, a skill which applies to nearly every event in speech and debate, as well as beyond high school.”

Joining a group, club, or class can help beginners and advanced students, even coaches. Here are what some of our Lasting Impact! students have said…

“I know I wouldn’t be as prepared if it wasn’t for your teaching and club.”

“Online Apol, allowed me to feel more confident, inside and outside the classroom, and even gave me the opportunity to compete at Nationals.”

“I am so thankful for my Online Community, this is exactly what I needed to push me out of my comfort zone.”

“I feel ready and prepared for this season!”

We have great things planned in Extemp for our six weeks together. Whether you are new to this category or have experience- this is an opportunity you don’t want to miss!

  • Why Extemp? Goal Setting. Basics to writing an Extemp Speech.
  • What are reliable sources? How to Build a Box?
  • How to Research? Unifying Formats. 
  • Practice Speeches with Feedback. 
  • Analysis Types, Use of Quotes, Stories, and Data.
  • Practice speeches with feedback. 

Do do not let this be an opportunity that slips in the wind!

JOIN NOW!

Limited Prep Breakdown by: Catherine Alles

When I was competing in Speech and Debate, I loved the Limited Preparation speeches. Apologetics, Impromptu, and Extemporaneous gave me the opportunity to use my voice to speak about important issues, make an impact, and inspire people. I used to jokingly tell people that I loved limited prep because for me, “limited preparation meant no preparation.” But that wasn’t really true. I spent a lot of time preparing for limited preparation speeches, just not in the same way as for platform or interpretive speeches. Remember our Online Extemp Group starts in less than two weeks. Join Now!

When you are doing a duo, your prep involves picking a book, memorizing, and practicing blocking with your partner. For persuasive, you need to spend most of your time researching and writing your speech, and then fine tuning your delivery. In Limited Preparation speeches, you don’t need to memorize anything, work with a partner, or plan out your hand motions, body movements, or pauses ahead of time. Instead, the best use of your time is to be an inquisitive and fully present person. What do I mean by this? Let’s break it down for three limited preps- Extemp, Apol, and Impromptu… (Isabelle Clausen will break down the Mars Hill binder next week)…

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Top 5 Things Every LDer Should Do (Workshop Thursday)

Have you ever walked into a debate round wondering in the world are you doing? Have you ever walked out of a round thinking you won that round, but ended up pathetically losing? Or have you ever walked out of a round thinking that you lost pathetically but actually won by a huge margin?

I’ve been there before, feeling inconsistent in my debate rounds, not knowing how I won or lost. We either go through a debate round feeling rushed and nervous, or confident and pragmatic. But regardless of how we feel, sometimes the judge votes for what we least expected. Why is this? Why can’t we find consistency in our competition? How is it that the really good people keep on winning tournament after tournament and we are just chilling here getting 3-3?

If you’re in this boat and want more consistency in your debate rounds, then I have 5 tips to share with you that will lead you down a more successful path! Join me, on Thursday for my LD Online Workshop, or keep reading…

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Mechanics of Cross X – Asking and Answering Questions by: Samuel Hand

I hope you found the last installment (purposes of cross-examination) helpful! Of course, understanding what you should aim to accomplish in CX is crucial to actually being effective in your rounds — but head knowledge means nothing unless you can actually implement it. The first question of implementation is this: how should you conduct yourself in cross-ex?

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Purposes of Cross Examination by: Samuel Hand

What if we spoke less and listened more? It seems like a silly question to ask in the context of competitive speech and debate, but fortunately for us, in debate it includes a built-in Q&A segment after each constructive speech. Debate is often thought of in terms of argument, counterargument, counter-counterargument, and so on — and it is therefore easy to overlook those three minutes of Q&A after each constructive. However, those six (for LD) or twelve (for TP) minutes may be more important than any speech in the round…

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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!

IO/Expos Tips from Nate Thompson, 2016 Champ

Are you on the fence about jumping on the IO/Expos bandwagon? Now is the time to check out what others have to say (including Nate Thompson) about this fabulous event! TONIGHT, Lasting Impact! will have a team of experienced speakers and constructors of “the speech event that uses boards and easel for visual aides”. IO/Expos is so much more than that! But don’t just take my word – come TONIGHT (sign up now). And don’t forget to read the article below…

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Extemporaneous – NOW is the time to try it! by: Steve Kish

Lasting Impact! has TWO opportunities to jump in to Extemp this fall! If this is something your club hasn’t been able to offer or you want more help and direction on how to get started… we have the answer!

1. Extemp Basics with Catherine Alles – Sun. Oct. 21 6:00pm CT

Extemp Basics with Catherine Alles

2. Extemp Excel with Steve Kish – Online 6 Week Club – Nov. 12 – Dec. 17

Extemp Excel Class (6 weeks)

If you still aren’t ready or sure you want to commit, read Steve Kish’s explanation on why Extemp is an important speech event to grow your speech and debate skills…

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JOIN US!! Workshops this Week- IO/Expos, Biblical Thematic, and Extemp – Oh my!

Whew! It’s a big week at Lasting Impact! We love what we do! If you haven’t had the opportunity to partake in one of our Lasting Impact! Online Workshops this is going to be a great week to join us. Here is what people from all over the country are saying about our online sessions…

”I didn’t think I needed a club to do Apol- I can do things on my own, right? But there is no replacement for the group knowledge and community support that you get with the online Apol club. I’ve been so challenged but also blessed to be a part of something bigger than just competition— learning things from brilliant teachers like Joel or Matthew that are helpful even outside of the competition room. When I say I recommend it, I don’t say it flippantly. Joining a Lasting Impact! online club or workshop is something I promise you won’t regret.” – Ethan, student, TX

“Mrs. Neumann’s workshop on cutting your piece (for interp) was so helpful. I’ve been competing for three years and she showed me things I never knew were possible! I think some rules are hard to understand so it was awesome to be able to talk through them and really delve into the “do’s” and “dont’s” of script writing. I definitely recommend it to anyone planning to perform an interpretation speech!” – Ellen, student, NE

“The Online Workshop experience is great for students and parents who are interested in learning about brand new categories. Mrs. Eskelund’s analysis of Oratorical was educational while allowing you to brainstorm while you listen.” – Gloria, student, WI

“The IO/Expos Online Workshop was such a big help to us in generating ideas and more importantly the nuts and bolts of the supplies needed. There is hardly any information out there on Illustrated Oratory/Expository but Lasting Impact’s workshop filled the void.” – Debbie, parent, FL

“Lasting Impact! has been one of the most influential tools for my speech and debate journey. It has equipped me with the tools to speak in a manner that glorifies God! I am extremely thankful for their resources. I would encourage anyone, who wants to become a better speaker, in any capacity, to join Lasting Impact!” – Mark, student, MI

Join us this week for one of these awesome Online Workshops…

Exploring Biblical Thematic – Fri. Oct. 19, 6:00pm CT

Exploring Biblical Thematic with Heather Neumann and Kristi Eskelund

All About IO/Expos – Fri. Oct. 19, 7:30pm CT

All About Illustrated Oratory/Expository with Heather, Kristi, and Guests

Extemp Basics with Catherine Alles – Sun. Oct. 21, 6:00pm CT

Extemp Basics with Catherine Alles

Here are some reasons why you should want to tune in…

  • Opportunities for growth
  • Exploring new ideas
  • New perspectives
  • “Golden Nuggets”
  • Fantastic and Experienced Coaching
  • Tips for success

If you can’t make live workshop, we do try to get the workshops recorded. See here for a complete list of RECORDED Workshops…

https://lastingimpact.info/product-category/recorded-workshops/

 

We hope to see you soon! You Got This!