Jessica (name changed for anonymity) is a 9-year-old student diagnosed with selective mutism. But in debate this year, Jessica inspired us all by volunteering to take on a special role in one of our debate activities. She shared her ideas with her teacher and bravely stood up to share her strong arguments with the rest of the class. We are so very proud of the progress Jessica has made, and will continue to make, with Debate it Forward.
Randall (name changed for anonymity) came to DIF while repeating the 6th grade, a fact that shocked us considering how quickly he took to debate. Randall always had his hand up to share another strong argument. One of his finest moments was getting up in front of the class and giving a passionate speech about the inequitable funding of athletics between genders. Randall has taken his confidence from debate and applied it to his other studies as well -- he has raised his GPA to almost a B-average and will be moving on to the 7th grade in the fall.
"As a parent, I highly recommend this camp for your child. Every day the children were taught critical thinking as well as trying to understand what it is like to walk in someone else's shoes. They had to articulate their thoughts and explain their ideas to a group."
– Mother of 2 DIF campers
"In a few weeks, he's gone from telling me that he never wants to debate to telling me that it is one of his favorite things about school."
– Mother of a diverse learner
"What a fantastic program! The format of the camp is brilliant: morning field trips to provide the context of the day's debate topic, followed by innovative games/exercises to build confidence and skills for successful persuasion, and then actual debates."
– Father of 2 DIF third-graders