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About Blakers19

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  • Birthday 11/30/1994

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    Blake Stump
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  1. One of the biggest things you can do is reach out to people currently outside of your school district who are familiar with the activity. There are plenty of universities in the Dallas area (which I believe is close to your school district) who participate in competitive policy (cross-x) debate. Many high schools utilize those college debaters as coaches for their teams. UT Dallas and UNT are the two that come to mind immediately. Next, if you have a functioning team, it helps to organize the parents and have them motivated/willing to help. Your school can save a ton of money on transportation if you have a parent group that is willing to carpool your students to and from tournament. This money can be used to attend more tournaments/pay for more coaches. One of the best ways to help your students become better debaters is to encourage them to attend camp in the summer. There are a couple camps I would recommend in Texas - the UT National Institute in Forensics and the Mean Green Workshops hosted by UNT. There are a lot of great out of state camps as well, but if your students are just starting out those two are good places to begin. I really cannot stress the importance of camp enough. It is critical for your debaters to attend camp in the summer if they want to be successful. The National Debate Coaches Association has a ton of resources free for you to use. The Open Evidence Project hosts all of the files produced at some of the biggest summer camps free for you to download. It can be found here: http://openevidence.debatecoaches.org/bin/view/Main/ They also provide a lot of curriculum resources which you can find here: http://www.debatecoaches.org/resources/curriculum-resources/ Next, if resources are available, try to get your kids attending tournaments sponsored by the Texas Forensic Association (http://txfa.weebly.com/). Some of the conventions employed by debaters at these tournaments (faster rate of speaking, etc) can be scary to new debaters, but they will get used to it with time. Once they're more experienced, they may want to start competing on what is known as the "national circuit." These tournaments aren't usually sponsored by a specific organization, but allow students to earn "bids" to the Tournament of Champions, which is generally regarded as the most competitive tournament of the year. The reason you should try to attend these tournaments is that they are generally more competitive at higher levels and also more closely resemble the type of debate seen in college, which means your kids have much higher chances of being able to continue on to debate successfully in college if they wish to do so. Additionally, some of the conventions seen in these tournaments (open cross-examination, argument disclosure, etc) allow for better argumentation to happen. If you haven't already, have your school become a member of the National Forensic League (http://nationalforensicleague.org/). This will allow you to join an NFL district, compete in their district tournament, and have a chance at sending some of your kids to nationals. ENCOURAGE YOUR KIDS TO DEBATE PAPERLESSLY. Although this requires a higher upfront cost with the purchase of laptops, it saves a ton of money over time since you won't have to constantly be purchasing paper, highlighters, toner, and checking evidence tubs at airlines (if you end up travelling nationally). You can find plenty of resources to help you/them learn paperless debate at http://paperlessdebate.com/ If you don't know already, to sign up for tournaments you should be using Joy of Tournaments (http://www.joyoftournaments.com/). You create an account, tournaments are listed and sorted by state, and there are instructions for registering for each tournament. Hope this helps!
  2. Just echoing everything already said here - GDI was a great experience for me. Getting to campus from the airport and around campus was not bad at all. There are cabs that wait outside the airport, they'll know exactly where you want to go because a bunch of kids are flying in to the same airport and asking to go to the same place, and the fare isn't too bad (I think it was like $20 for us both years?) and when you're leaving camp they will provide a shuttle to the airport (at least they have for the last two years). Your dorm will be right next door to the place where you eat all of your meals, and you are pretty close to all of the buildings that your lab sessions will be held in. There are also a number of fast food restaurants just off campus if you get tired of the food in the COG (which you probably will).
  3. damn it Jacob stop doing shit like this But yes, I'll be debating with Cleaver at nationals. Jacob was a temporary partner.
  4. Before this year, our school gave our team virtually no support beyond local tournaments. When we would go to national circuit tournaments, our parents would drive us, pay entry fees, hotel costs, etc. We had a coach that wasn't officially hired by our school who donated a lot of his time and would be with us at circuit tournaments, but our school made our parents come with us if a school-hired person wasn't going to be with us. Edit: This is just what our situation was - Sam goes to a different school and I think they're in a similar situation but I'm not 100% sure.
  5. I will be working at the Baylor camp this summer, and can answer (or find answers to) any questions you've got if you want to PM them to me. I don't know who UTD's lab leaders are but I know Baylor's top lab is usually John Cook/Ashley Morgan, and their other lab leaders are phenomenal as well.
  6. Out of the two you've listed, I would suggest UNT. I know they have historically had good lab leaders and everyone I know that's been there has been happy with it, but I've never really heard of East Texas Baptist University...
  7. Seconded. They bid at St. Mark's this year, unfortunately didn't get a chance to bid again. Lots of competitive teams this year, but they're only juniors.
  8. Rather than being depressed during this time maybe you should be cutting answers to said link. There's also nothing to prevent you from doing this when you're on the negative. My partner and I have been semi-successful on the national circuit the past two years and rarely ever had a coach with us at tournaments. I feel like there's way too many people whining about the "big prep schools that bring 15,000 coaches with them." Sure that would be a nice luxury to have, but it doesn't necessarily make a huge difference. If you actually put as much work into debate as the teams from bigger schools do I can promise you that having a coach there for the 15 minutes you've got before a round starts won't actually make an enormous difference.
  9. I'm sure he would be very happy to know that these are the habits of his that people talk about on the internet.
  10. Blakers19

    Tfa State

    Bryan didn't qualify with me - I debated with a sophomore this weekend. Got pulled up for our break round and didn't clear.
  11. Yeah, the 2AC is one of the harder speeches to flow. When your partner gets a little bit better at flowing/debate in general, you should hand him your flows as soon as your 2AC ends so that he can fill them in for you. Until then, I would suggest getting as much filled in before the 2AC/during cross-x of the 2AC, and then try to get the rest filled in during prep before the 2NC starts.
  12. It's possible depending on the judge. At our NFL districts tournament we had judges that expected that, so we just sort of threw something together before a round and it ended up working out.
  13. If you wanted to attend camp for longer than 3 weeks, then why not attend one of UT's longer options? Also, what do you mean by "specialized?"
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