Drill: Improving your Final Focus

A few weeks ago I posted a drill to improve your Summary, so here is the partner exercise for Final Focus. Hope this helps you improve this very important speech.

What you need: Notes from an old Final Fosuc speech you have given, the corresponding flows from that round, a fresh sheet of paper or laptop to type on, a person to review your changes (preferrably not your partner but someone familiar with debate.

  1. Give it to your reviewing partner to review. Have them note the following once they have read the speech on the same sheet of paper/word document.
  2. Write out speech that you have given (approximate – don’t correct) or record a speech and transcribe it later. You want to work with what you normally do – don’t start improving it before the revision step.
    • What were the voters? (offensive arguments)
    • What were the opponents’ voters? (defensive arguments)
    • What weighing or impact comparisons occured?
    • Was there a theme?
    • How was framework used?
  3. Read what your reviewer wrote. Ask yourself:
    • Did your speech achieve what you wanted?
    • What did you not convey clearly enough?
  4. Rewrite your speech to better achieve your goals. Make yourself include the following in the rewrite:
    1. A numbered structure or model (ie PRO world/ CON world)
    2. Taglines used for each argument.
    3. The phrase “vote for…” or “voting on…” at least three times
    4. Use the words outweigh and prefer at least once a piece
    5. Extend one key piece of evidence
    6. Use the phrase “the impact is…” for every offensive voting issue you list.
    7. Use the phrase “we clearly show/prove”  or “Our opponent fails to show/prove…” at least once.
    8. Use the phrase EVEN IF… at least once to give the judge options.
  5. Have your reviewer read your speech again and ask them the questions:
    • What improved in the speech?
    • Were you more persuaded after the second speech?
  6. Read the new speech aloud for yourself – does it feel different?
  7. Apply what works to your next Final Focus speech. All of the inclusions are meant to help you better organize your speech and build in persuasive rhetoric along the way.

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