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4 Ways to Use Mind-mapping in a Debating Class

Debating isn't just about standing up and speaking in public. It's also about preparation, research and exploring a topic.

You're probably familiar with the idea of mind-mapping but perhaps not familiar with how to use it in your debating program. We use mind-mapping in a range of different ways.

1. For brainstorming We ask students to create large mind-maps about their topic when they start exploring it. We find that doing this helps them be more creative with their ideas than making a list. We also find that as coaches, we can sit down with a group and show them links between their ideas by drawing lines that they hadn't seen before. This helps them understand the bigger picture and how diverse ideas connect. 2. For planning We find that using a mind-map to help a team plan their arguments and what each speaker is going to say. Sometimes having this in a highly visual format and all on one page helps children understand the r