Greetings Kent Families,
Many people have asked Terry and I questions about speech and debate camp, I would like to oakley outlet write to you all to talk about the importance of camp, answer some basic questions about camp, and to explore different camps to talk about their benefits and costs.
Obviously this is meant to start a conversation, I would suggest reaching out to the coaching staff, or to the parents of older students who have attended camp to get their perspective as well.
What is speech and debate camp?
Speech and debate camps are hosted on college campuses around the United States and are sponsored and staffed by college and high school coaches. Many camps take selection of their staff very seriously to ensure that students are receiving the best and most competitively successful faculty to enrich their experience.
Debate camp is a rigorous chance for students to practice their debate skills and research the topic for the next season of debates. Students will spend their days researching and writing arguments, attending topic lectures, and completing practice debates and speeches with guided feedback from their instructors.
Speech camp gives kids the chance to pick material in interpretation, write their oratories for the season, work on honing of extemp research and prep techniques. Students also get to practice their blocking, acting, and performances in interp and work on speaking skills in public speaking events in front of dedicated professionals without distraction. Many times, students will leave camp with 1-2 pieces that are nearly tournament ready. This advantage gives students a major boost over their competitors that are just starting to work in the fall.
Speech and debate camps are useful because they ensure that students can have dedicated time to learning the craft without distractions from school work and the many other events and activities that our students take part in throughout the school year. Focusing only on speech or debate and working hard during the summer is a time when many students make fast leaps and bounds in their abilities.
Speech and debate camp also allow students to network with their peers, judges and with college coaches. It is a great way to improve the standing of students in the community and to make connections with college coaches and programs that may offer students scholarships to compete on their teams.
Where do I go to speech and debate camp?
Let’s start with Debate…..
Ok great, so which debate camps are good?
There are many great debate camps around the country. I will provide some commentary on the camps that I think are generally the best for different skill levels.
Camps for students who want to get their feet wet, but don’t have a lot of time, resources, or aren’t sure they LOVE debate yet.
I would consider attending many of the two-week camps around the country. These are all introductory camps, 2 weeks long, close to Denver (some are), lower cost, and have good faculty members. The 2-week camps are good camps for students who want a short camp experience and are in their first or second year of debate.
- Weber State Debate Camp 2 or 3 Week
- Gonzaga 2 week
- Cal 2 week
- Missouri State Debate Camp
- Michigan 2 week
- Kansas Debate Camp
- Wake Forest 2 Week
- Northwestern 2 week.
- Dartmouth Debate Institute 2 week.
Camps for students who want to put in a lot of time, but Fake Ray Bans don’t want to attend a premier camp for 7 weeks.
Most of the camps that are above also have 3-4 week camps that will meet student’s needs for a longer and more in depth experience.
Camps for students who want the premier debate package:
The following 3 camps are probably the best camps in the country, but they also require the most time and money to attend.
- Michigan 7 week
- Michigan State and Georgetown Hoya Spartan Scholars
- Cal Berkeley 7 week
Here is a list of camps to give you some links to websites to look at:
Here is a comprehensive list of camps, the list is from 2016, but is being updated. The website also provides likes to the camp websites, where you can find information about specific debate camps, their times, cost, and the application to attend.
Warning – there are quite a few camps on here that I wouldn’t send students to. Selecting a camp with high quality instruction is important; there are many camps that I would call scams. They select high school students who had success, but aren’t really invested in teaching or anything else. The students who attend end up receiving a worse education, because the staff of the camp isn’t really invested in improving the kids they are teaching.
Are there camps specifically for LD students?
Absolutely. There are two camps I would suggest sending kids to.
- Global Debate Symposium – it is here in Colorado and Staffed by a great group.
- Victory Briefs institute – they have many camps around the country. Our LD students in the past have attended; I have mixed feelings about the staffing choices.
Beyond these camps that focus on LD, I would also suggest to LD students to consider attending a camp for policy debate. Most of the difficult concepts in debate come from things that are used in policy. We have had students see success in learning those skills first hand.
Where do I go for Speech camps?
Yes! Speech students who attend camp receive the same benefits as students in debate. Here is a list of camps that Terry thinks would be beneficial to any student who attends. There are dates and web links to the camps. Please feel free to browse the camps. Also don’t think b/c a camp is on the campus of Stanford University it is a better camp than Bradley University’s camp. They all have their pros and cons.
1) Interprod – Boston Session: Emerson College July 9th – July 23rd 201
Des Moines Session: July 28-August 6, 2017
A camp on the campus of Emerson College in Boston, MA and in Des Moines,Iowa. Very popular and a lot of kids come out with great speeches and material as well as some great friends. It uses acting theory in their interpretation training and has a great Oratory coach. Extemp is NOT offered at this camp.
2) GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY — July 9th – 23rd — Outside Washington, DC
Many of our students have gone to this camp and cheap jordans online given it rave reviews. They improved, made great friends, and earned invaluable presentation and preparation skills.
3) University of Texas — June 25th to July 8th
In Austin, Texas, it is a great camp that Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses has great coaching. We have sent kids here before and they have come back ready to win some trophies. Ask Sydney Gart!!!
5) Bradley University — Summer Forensics Institute — Sunday, July 9th – Saturday, July 22nd, 2017
On the Campus of Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. This is probably the most affordable camp of the ones that I am recommending. I went to this camp as a High School student and learned everything I know there. They run a great camp that gets you tournament ready and teaches you amazing skills in all the speech events. It was a lot of fun overall.
4) Champion Briefs Camp: They offer camps in Florida and Texas at three different times.
Please click on link to see the dates and locations of different camps https://www.championbriefsinstitute.com/dates.php#ca
5) Western Kentucky — 1 Week long camp — July 8th – 16th http://www.wkuforensics.com/sfi/
6) Stanford Univ. Summer Forensics Institute— July 23rd – August 5th
-They have one week, two week, and three week sessions all starting July 23rd running through August 12th. Please go to the website and look at the schedule that might fit the students summer schedule. We have sent students here in the past and had some good results. The coaches there are top notch.
Is this really required?
No student in our program is required to go to camp. You do not have to attend an expensive and fancy debate camp to get better at debate. However, attending a camp is a short cut to getting better at a much faster pace, because it gives students an intensive series of practices for the next year. Additionally attending camp is EXTREMELY fun. Looking back on our high school experience attending Speech and debate camp was one of our favorite things. Yes it was the highlight of our summers and we felt much more prepared for the season.
Wow, this is a lot of information. I still have more questions.
This is meant to be a starting point learning about debate camps. Please feel free to email us with questions and reach out about camp. We would love to help you and your student end up in a place that helps them succeed and is a fun summer experience.
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