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The Socratic Club - 5th February

This week saw our Junior and Senior Socratic club sessions focus on structural skills for argumentation - from Points, Evidence and Explanation, to powerful beginnings and closing statements and sentences. These are important techniques and guides for writing essays, interviews and of course debating.

It was very good to see each group engage with these top tips and use them in the subsequent discussions and formal debates.

We asked both groups whether 'the West should supply Ukraine with fighter jets?' The Junior group voted in favour of the motion at both tellings, as did the Senior Group albeit with a smaller margin. Everyone wanted to help Ukraine, but important points such as the risks of interception and the loss of sophisticated technology, the complex training required, the risk to human life, and a risk of escalation were all raised.

We then turned to a philosophical debate on the motion 'can our leaders make mistakes in their private lives?' This on the back of a cost of living crisis, seat-belt-gate and Zahawi's tax affairs. The Junior Group split 50/50, whilst the Senior Group recognized the inherent failings of humans and that in history even our greatest leaders such as Winston Churchill have made errors and mistakes. There the vote was passed 80/20. We also looked at leadership skills and the importance of inspirational speaking - from Mandela to Gandhi and Martin Luther King.

Finally, we debated in the Senior Group whether the cost of living crisis would radically change the way people watch online - whether via Netflix or other subscription services. Would people return in the same numbers as before after the crisis? The group voted unanimously in both tellings that they would - nevertheless, we were especially pleased with those arguing firmly against their own opinions, with impressive conviction; and with the evidence used in the proposition as well as a superb summary speech.

Well done all!

Lent Term Dates 2023

Socratic Club & Special Workshops/Events

15th January

Hybrid Interview Workshop & Group Debating

(In Person & via zoom)

(Junior and Senior) (10:30 am)

22nd January

Junior Group (11 am)/Senior Group (4 pm)

29th January

Speaker Session

with special guest Admiral Mike Haskins (US Navy)

Junior Group & Senior Group (4 pm)

5th February

Junior Group (11 am)/Senior Group (4 pm)

19th February

(Bring a friend)

Junior Group (11 am)/Senior Group (4 pm)

5th March

Junior Group (11 am)/Senior Group (4 pm)

12th March

Courtauld Gallery Tour

(In Person)

(Junior and Senior) (11 am)

19th March

Junior Group (11 am)/Senior Group (4 pm)

16th April

Hybrid Revision & Exam Technique Workshop

(In Person & via zoom)

(Junior and Senior) (10:30 am)

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