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Why Capitol Debate?

Our aim is to enrich the lives of students. To do that, we gather expert staff, with a diverse group of students, and select excellent facilities and locations to create fun, safe, and supportive environments. Read More »

Here’s what sets us apart
Our Mission
Why Debate?
Expert Staff
Alumni Success Stories
Widely Attended
Safe & Secure
Great Facilities in Great Locations
Lots of Fun
For All Ages & Experience Levels

2018 Summer Debate Camps

We offer debate camps, public speaking schools, writing classes and youth leadership camps.. Select a program to find your camp. Read More »

Overnight & Commuter Camps
Business Communication
Competitive Public Forum Camps
Middle School Debate Camps
High School Debate Camps
Lincoln Douglas Debate Camps
Day Camp Only
Debate Day Camp
Public Speaking
Leadership and Mock Trial Day Camp

About Our Workshops

After school workshops run concurrently with regular middle school semesters. These programs offer an opportunity for children to learn debate, leadership, and public speaking. Read More »

After School Workshops
Northeast Club – NY, NJ, CT
Introduction to Debate Online Courses

Debate Teams

Ready to compete? Our teams receive the instruction and opportunity to compete in national tournaments. We offer programs in different locations and online to reach as many students as possible. Read More »

Capitol Classic's Debate Teams
Boston Club
Midatlantic Club – MD, VA, DC, PA, NC
National Travel Debate Team
Northeast Club – NY, NJ, CT
West Club – CA, TX, AZ, WA

Attendee Info

Already registered? Now it is time to get ready for camp. For students attending any of our summer camps or seasonal programs, please visit the appropriate page (on the left) to see information about your specific program, from packing lists to trip details. If you need to check your billing information, view your forms, or change your personal info, please visit your Online Account.

Information for Attendees
2017 Summer Camp Attendee Information
Day Camp Attendee Info
2015 Middle School Nationals
Staff Portal

Debate News

Debate News provides up-to-date information and resources to the national high school public forum debate community. It consists of tournament updates, statistics and rankings, including awards for season-long excellence.

Debate News
Blog
Media Mentions
800.450.5012 Request Information

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All News

Distractions? Stay Confident in the Midst of Interruptions

by Victor Gazio


Children interrupt BBC News interview – BBC News Video by BBC News

Robert E. Kelly, a political-science professor at Pusan National University in South Korea experienced first hand what it means to be distracted and interrupted during an important interview. When giving an interview, presentation or speech there are only a limited number of variables you are able to control. Obviously, the ideal scenario is to prepare your environment to the best of your ability to minimize distractions to maximize your audience’s focus. What happens when you’re caught off guard and have to deal with an unexpected heckler, a case of dry mouth or even the invasion of a toddler? The first thing to remember is what you have control over, which in this case, is yourself. How you decide to respond or react to such situations can position you as a confident leader or a weak presenter. Addressing the elephant in the room positions you as someone who is aware of their surroundings and isn’t afraid to deal with difficult obstacles that may come your way.

With today’s students constantly inundated with texts, alerts, social media, etc it has become even more important that students have the discipline to not only prioritize these constant distractions but to focus and thrive through them. Capitol Debate grabs the bull by the horns in this regard. Instead of telling students to leave their phones in their pockets or their laptops out of sight we use these tools to help teach students the ability to filter important things and tune out those distractions. By using our online format during the school year and laptops for research and communication during Summer camp students learn that while these things have their place they should never be a distraction from the larger goal of academic excellence. Capitol Debate uses these tools to teach that your laptop and phone are not just for games and talking but powerful tools for research and gaining knowledge about the world around you. These are the key foundations to building more confident speakers and students.

“Confidence. It is important for middle school students to develop confidence and self-esteem (CCE, 2005). There is considerable evidence that competitive debate develops confidence and supports student empowerment. Debate participants “often experience debate as a form of personal empowerment. This includes feelings of personal efficacy, educational engagement, and political agency” (O’Donnell, 2010, p. 51). It gives students confidence they need to interact with peers and authority figures. As Cori Dauber (1989) explains, debate teaches students that “they ought not be intimidated by the rhetoric of expertise” surrounding policy issues (p. 207).”