Debate Skills Workshop
An affordable online learning option
The Summer 2021 Middle School/High School Debate Skills Workshop is an online class taught by Sana Jaffery and Lila Coles. This class is designed to be cost-effective, and an affordable option for online debate coaching.
The beginner class is made for students that have less than a year of debate experience. The class starts by introducing basic tenets of advocacy, such as Plato’s elements of persuasion, components of a persuasive speech, and argument development, refutation and summary. The class also introduces key strategies and skills in regards to cross-examination, a portion of a debate similar to that which is seen in litigation.
The class begins with SPAR, a simple format of debate that gives students limited amounts of preparation time to research a topic and write a persuasive speech about it. Students then follow a specific format of back-and-forth speeches, as well as cross-examination. Students eventually get the opportunity to compete at SPAR debate tournaments, which are often held on weekends.
The intermediate class is made for students that have at least one year of debate experience. Students can apply for a waiver to take the Intermediate class. In the intermediate class, students are separated based on their general interests, aptitudes, and performance into various labs that focus on more advanced formats of debate, such as Lincoln-Douglas, Parliamentary debate, and Student Congress. Students develop their existing skills while preparing to compete at more advanced extramural tournaments against students from other programs.
The classes maintain the student-teacher ratio at no worse than 1 to 8.
Wednesdays at 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM PST
Jun 16 - Aug 4
However, for a limited time, students that register before December 1, pay:
For 38 hours of tuition.
* Spots are limited. Late registrations may be waitlisted.
Grade Levels: 5th-12th
The class will be split into labs partly based on grade levels. This is done in order to ensure that students spend most of their time learning with students of a similar age and experience level as theirs.
Video Conferencing Format
A computer or tablet
A Gmail account
Headphones (highly recommended)
An external microphone (preferred)
Students will have between 30 minutes to one hour of homework per week.
About the Coach
As a competitor, Sana has received various awards, including:
2019 National Speech and Debate Tournament Octofinalist (World Schools Debate)
2019 Philalethic Tournament Champion (1st place Lincoln Douglas)
2018 & 2019 NCFL Nationals Qualifier 2018 Dempsey Cronin Tournament Champion (1st place Lincoln Douglas)
Outstanding Distinction Merit in the National Speech and Debate Association
Winner. California Coast District Communicator of the Year
Sana believes that it’s important to treat students like they can do anything. Instilling confidence in students makes them far more willing to learn, and to try their best. Sana believes that regular practice can be customized to work on each student’s individual strengths and weaknesses.
Sana believes that strong debaters have very individualized styles. When students are comfortable in their own knowledge and skill set, they will be able to expand their own abilities easily, without having to focus on replicating someone else’s style. Sana wants to help students sharpen their skills while making sure that their debate style is really their own, and not just copied and pasted style of their coach.