Hi Kyra! I really like the issue you’re focusing on with Novelly! I think knowing how the government works is such an important thing to know, and without that knowledge, it’s hard to really comment on current political issues and suggest solutions. I do wonder, though, how and where you are getting the stories people read.
I also have a concern about bias and if Novelly “takes sides” on issues or tries to present multiple perspectives. I think there’s value in both, but I think it’s important to generally try to teach students how the government works and how to think, not what to think (although in some cases, there is definitely a right and wrong). If you’d like to talk more, I’d be happy to!
Hi Jenny! I’ve been on my school’s debate team since sixth grade and it has helped me immensely—not only in my argumentation skills, but also in my research and public speaking skills. I am really glad to see you trying to improve access to debate. I am wondering a little bit about some of the specifics about your workshops; what drills do you run? How often do you mock debate? etc.
I’ve found what’s helped me the most is just debating. Even if it’s against I have no chance of “beating,” it’s still helpful to have someone point out the logical fallacies I might make, and other “mistakes,” so that I can avoid those the next time. Drills can help a lot, but I think with debate, practice definitely makes perfect. And the only way to really do that, in my opinion, is to mock debate with real research, plans, and topics. If you want to talk more, let me know, and I’d be happy to talk to you!
Hi Yasmine! I think you’ve identified a really important issue that needs someone to solve it. I also think that you have a unique connection to it that will allow you to approach it in a better way than someone else more privileged might. One aspect I would like to see more of is how you plan on scaling the project, while still keeping it personal—for example, it’s easy to write an ACT test prep book and distribute it (perhaps even online), but there are already a lot of free resources out there. I think the challenge then is how you will provide more personalized support and coaching to youth from under resourced communities and still be able to have a wide impact. I’m excited to see where you go with your project!