Teachers often use the debate to effectively increase student involvement and participation during tutorial/seminar sessions, especially within the Humanities and Social Sciences and selectively within the Sciences. When a teacher uses the debate as a framework for learning, s/he hopes to get students to conduct comprehensive research into the topic, gather supporting evidence, engage in collaborative learning, delegate tasks, improve communication skills, and develop leadership and team-skills—all at one go. Associate Professor Alice Christudason
While competitive debate offers unmatched intellectual training to some students, debate needs to be available to all teachers and students in their classrooms. A primary goal of the Associated Leaders of Urban Debate and its partners is to elevate debate from a premier enrichment activity into a core instructional tool. Curricular debate programs will allow the academic power of debate to reach more and more students each day
Innovative teachers are the passport to educational change. Debate has attracted new Teach for America teachers as well as seasoned veterans because of the interactive and exciting nature of the curriculum. By engaging debate as a curricular tool and positioning ALOUD to work with universities and school systems on certification and training, debate offers an easy way to spread its power to school districts initially not interested in national circuit competition.
ALOUD partners provide local training workshops in their cities that can be extended to outside parties. Additionally, ALOUD designs workshops to train teachers to become coaches for competitive debating or community debating as well as how to use Debate Across the Curriculum to enhance their classroom. A wide array of online resources supplement face-to-face professional development sessions creating 24-hour access for the engaged educator.
RETURN ON INVESTMENT
School systems and local leaders want tangible results now. ALOUD adds substance and depth to the daily conversation by introducing debate into settings where better advocacy training, research, critical thinking and analytical skills could prove useful. Depending on design, debate offers mentoring, teacher training, youth development, leadership training, literacy skills, after-school programming, and awareness initiatives. We bring school districts seeking new innovations and universities wanting to engage in debate together.
Debate is a powerful lever to counteract two triggers of teenage violence – low empathy and short time horizon. Urban students involved in debate report a lower level of frustration because they feel more confident in their oral fluency. They are simply less likely to resort to violence because they can effectively communicate their ideas. Numerous studies have demonstrated that debate reduces school violence and disciplinary issues. ALOUD's flexible curriculum capitalizes on this attribute.