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Youth Forum 2007

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The IDEA Youth Forum (IYF) is an international event organized by the International Debate Education Association that brings together students, coaches and trainers from all over the world in for two weeks of debating, learning and exchanging ideas on global topics.

In 2007, the Youth Forum is being help in Trest, the Czech Republic. To register to attend the Youth Forum, click here

There will be two themes to this year's Forum:

  1. Water
  2. Freedom of Expression

This years' Trainers are preparing the curriculum for this year's event and are using this wiki as their workspace. Feel free to view the lesson plans and let us know what you think.

Forum Tracks

Some innovations in this year's Youth Forum include special section dedicate to teaching debate skills as well as a beginners' track and a capacity building workshop.

The Capacity Building Track

The IDEA Youth Forum 2007 features a new debate training track to facilitate capacity building in our debate communities. Participants in this track will gain the skills and tools needed to strengthen their debate programs. This track will help experienced debaters transition into being coaches, judges, trainers or debate program developers. The curriculum will cover topics such as: strategies for retaining debaters and coaches; training new debate formats; organizing and running workshops and tournaments; organizing and running public debates; designing debate inclusion programs and leadership training.

The capacity building track will be facilitated by Chris Baron (United states) and Margo Loor (Estonia). Chris works with middle and high school students in Baltimore City, and coaches university students at Towson University in the USA (including many IDEA grads!). He is also currently serving on the IDEA board of directors. This year's Forum will be Chris's 7th Forum and he is looking forward to it, especially finding ways to make the forum serve the IDEA network more.

All high-school graduates participating in the Karl Popper World Debating Championships will become participants of the Capacity Building track for the remaining part of the Forum. The track is also open to other high school students who have at least 2 years of experience with debate, good skills of English and who satisfy the eligibility conditions for the IDEA Karl Popper Debate Championships. Those interested will need to fill out an application for participating in the Capacity Building track. Applications will be available on the IDEA Youth Forum 2007 website once registration begins.

Participants in this track will have a chance to develop their skills as teachers, trainers, administrators and debate advocates. Depending upon their particular focus, they will develop strategies (in the form of concrete proposals) to strengthen their debate networks in the areas of fundraising; visibility; development of instructional material and new debate methodologies; recruitment of new members; areas of debate program expansion. The curriculum will be divided into two main sections:

  1. Sessions on focus areas. Topics for these sessions include: peer coaching, training of trainers, recruitments and retention of participants, organization of public debates, organization and administration of debate tournaments, workshops and other debate events, fundraising and support, etc.
  2. Project proposal development: participants will work in teams and individually to develop specific proposals which they plan to implement in their respective debate communities.

The Beginners' Track

A second track that will be offered at the IDEA Youth Forum is the novice track. The purpose of this track is to introduce students new to Karl Popper debate to the format and rules of the game and provide them with a basic knowledge of debate and argumentation concepts. The track will run parallel to the IDEA Karl Popper debate Chimapioships. Therefore, students attending the novice track will not compete in the first tournament, but will join in mixed teams during the second part of the Forum.

The novice track will be facilitated by Ronna Liggett (United States) and Margarita Dusciac (Moldova). Ronna has been involved in debate since she was 15, when she joined her high school debate club. She is a full-time professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, USA, where she teaches debate, intercultural communication, public speaking, persuasion and nonverbal communication. This will be Ronna's fourth IDEA Youth Forum. She loves the Forum, the people and the rich learning experience it provides for all those involved.

Margarita comes from Moldova where she has been involved in debate since 1994. She coaches high-school and is a national trainer and IDEA accredited international trainer. Debate has become part of her life and the way she teaches. She says debate has empowered her and provided an understanding of democracy and how to instill democratic values in the youth of her country.

To be eligible to register for the novice track debaters should not have been debating for more than one year in any debate format and for no more than six months in Karl Popper debate. Debaters must also meet all eligibility requirements for the IDEA Karl Popper Debate Championships. Those interested in participating will need to register for this specific track once registration begins. The curriculum for the novice track will cover two main areas. On one hand, students will learn the Karl Popper debate format, learn to develop and present arguments and critically analyze their partners’ arguments. One the other hand students will develop competence in debating by engaging in several practice rounds and observing debates to increase their experience and comfort with debating in the second tournament.


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