NSDA Middle School Speech Challenge
2020 — Online, US
- Each school must upload a signed Entry Agreement Form. Download the form here, and view instructions for how to upload this form here.
- Each student must have their parent/guardian sign a media release form. Download the form here, and view instructions for how to upload this form here.
- Students that are have completed their 5th through 8th grade years are eligible to register.
- There are no entry limits for this tournament; coaches may enter students in as many events as they choose. Schools may enter as many entries as they choose.
There are no longer any patterns for speech events. Many typical NSDA Middle School Nationals speech events will be offered: Declamation, Dramatic Interpretation, Humorous Interpretation, Informative Speaking (no visual aids permitted), Original Oratory, Poetry, Program Oral Interpretation, Storytelling, and Prose. Two additional events will be adapted to the asynchronous format: Prepared Mixed Extemporaneous Speaking and Prepared Prompt Speaking (revised version of Impromptu). In these two formats, students will receive lists of 10 topics or prompts on May 1. They will pick one to speak on and record and submit their speech on that topic within the typical time limits of those events.
Two new events have been adapted to give opportunities to our middle school debate competitors. In the Pro Con Challenge, students will write a 3-5 minute affirmative case and a 3-5 minute negative case on the National Tournament topic for LD, PF, or CX. They will read both of those speeches within a recording limit of 10 minutes and 30 seconds. Students may take recorded “prep time” in between speeches to pull up files or take a short break, but the recording will stop them at 10 minutes and 30 seconds. Judges will evaluate the structure, arguments, evidence, and speaking abilities of each competitor and rank them against each other. The event's goal is to demonstrate that students have the ability to see multiple perspectives on an overall issue. In the Congressional Debate Authorship Challenge, competitors will select two pieces of legislation from the High School Nationals Congressional Debate Docket and construct two authorship speeches 3-5 minutes in length. They will give both of those speeches within a recording limit of 10 minutes and 30 seconds, taking prep time between speeches if needed but staying within their limit of 10 minutes and 30 seconds. Judges will evaluate the structure, arguments, evidence, and speaking abilities of each competitor and rank them against each other.
As a reminder, only school-based members are allowed to enter the Middle School National Tournament. For any club or organization that does not currently have a school-based membership, the NSDA is eager to work with you to create school-based speech and debate teams. Please contact email@example.com for more information.