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Isaiah and Ryan CollinsRyan Collins (2013 TP national champion) and I are planning this weekend’s teaching.

We’re working with a group of experienced debaters who aren’t having the traction they should.

We had both written down our own notes, and they were remarkably similar.
Take a look at this list and see if it unlocks some clarity around why you may have plateaued this year. It’s time to work out some kinks in the mid-stretch of competitive season.

“I don’t think anyone’s really engaged on the philosophy of foreign policy much at all.

Additionally I think that teams are losing because they’re failing to do the little things. We talk a lot in camps about debates being won or lost at the margins, and I’m not convinced teams are doing what they need to do to win in these areas.

Things like
– Don’t be petty, engage on the best version of the other team’s arguments.
– Shell and Extend (which you’ve talked about)
– Don’t get the advanced debater bug (Looking down on other teams, snarky CX’es, this just affects your whole bearing towards other teams, you’ve also talked about this)
– Outwork your opponents. (Work on research, figures of speech, etc. Put in more/different effort than opposing teams are. I don’t see that happening with many of the TP’ers at all.)
– Keep things simple. All of the 1AC’s that I’ve edited with teams or heard delivered in club have been way more complex than necessary, distracting from the core message of the case.)
Also, this isn’t a margin thing, but the arguments that teams are choosing to run aren’t very persuasive. It’s kinda hard to teach what “good arguments” are, but I think they could work on that. (This might be alleviated by talking about not being petty and outworking opponents).

Those are just my thoughts on some things to talk about. None of them could be a lecture of their own, but could be worked into broader lectures.”

If you need an hour with a coach to help you out of a plateau, just let Chloe know from our coaching page and we’ll link you up with someone like Ryan Collins. 

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