The following are (mostly) unique methodologies to Monument’s success. Not everyone coaches this way, but — after decades of teaching and growing our curriculum and programs — we believe this method to be the best way to teach speech and debate. This is the “Monument Methodology”:
- Traditional. There is never a loss for new, progressive ideas to make speech and debate better. No doubt, we will entertain the latest winning strategies. However, when the newest idea is exhausted, we are usually left with traditional stock issues, Aristotelian rhetoric, and logic. Monument teaches you to master traditional forensic theory.
- Structure and Strategy. The plethora of debate techniques are vast and wide, and Monument encourages many of them. However, teaching higher-level strategy before embracing fundamental structure is extremely damaging to students, especially new ones. Monument guides you through structure and strategy…in that order!
- Flow. Understanding proper horizontal flowing technique is the first fundamental understanding of any debate format. Failing to flow properly is failing to know the structure of debate. Speeches, too, should shoot straight and be understandable, not rapid-fire or chaotic. If you don’t flow it, you don’t know it.
- Research. All competitors should start with research when building a debate case or a speech. Starting with an idea and finding research to support it is a backwards method of preparation that leads to frustration and harmful ignorance. Let the research guide you.
- Modeling. The most efficient way to teach speech and debate (or any school of education) is through modeling. This scientific pedagogy, known among educators as “imitation,” is empirically proven. We hire champions to write our source material, and our Members enjoy modeling their success. Model the champions and those who coach them.
- Purpose. We believe every student has purpose in life, a “calling” that is unique to the individual. Our methodology supports individual purpose by training hearts and minds for action in that purpose. We do not proselytize or promote a hidden agenda. Instead, we see speech and debate as an arena of competition that helps launch young people into life. Monument’s mission is to “train minds for action.”
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