June 27, 2015
Catalyst’s Otago University Debating Society Workshop at Wakatipu High School
Wakatipu High School hosted the second annual OUDS workshop, when six of our region’s top debaters travelled to Queenstown from Dunedin to teach students the art of debating and public speaking.
Some 25 WHS students participated, along with several students from Mount Aspiring College and Cromwell College. The afternoon started with a show debate on the motion “This House Would Assassinate Foreign Dictators”, which the students watched in awe as the University debaters flaunted their talents in word-wizardry and the power to persuade. Students were then put into small groups and coached through the process of developing and presenting an argument in the context of a debate.
The intensive workshop ended with the coaches giving students 40 minutes to prepare an 8 minute long argument affirming or negating the moot “This House Would Pay People for their Organs”. Although many found this intimidating, everyone gave it a go and made the most of the experience. Many natural talents shone through.
The workshop was an extremely valuable opportunity for our students and the feedback was overwhelmingly positive.