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As soon as I began the timer for the first round of speed debates, I knew this random late-night lesson plan was “the one.” The lesson of my dreams. (Check out this video on my Instagram if you don’t believe me: The Magic Happening!

) I thought to myself while sporting the maniacal teacher grin that naturally comes with making kids have so much fun that they forget they’re actually learning. )It was so fun, in fact, that I am now unsure of how I can ever top that lesson.

I was indeed a little worried about my quiet students who dislike talking to others, and my reluctant students, whose negative attitudes might not mesh with my interactive plan. How will I return to normalcy after the thrill of speed debating?

As it turned out, I didn’t even need to bribe my students. It was the best of the best, the kind of lesson that makes you want to stand on a mountaintop and shout to your administrators, “COME OBSERVE ME, NOW! It was one of those days when all I had to do was circulate throughout the room and “watch the magic happen.” As I walked around listening in on the debates, this is what I saw: the “quiet” kids coming out of their shells, animatedly speaking to their partners in ways that I had never witnessed before, the “reluctant” students smiling and laughing, a clear violation of their typical “too cool for school” motto, the “talkers,” gesticulating wildly as they passionately argued their topics, and everyone in between, more engaged than I ever thought possible. I feel like a kid on December 26th: I’ll be over here grappling with the post-perfect-lesson blues, but if you want to experience the same kind of exhilarating lesson, you can check out my complete resource here: Speed Debating: Engaging Activity to Practice Debate, Ethos, Pathos, & Logos. ) While you’re at it, you may want to check out what I call my second-best lesson, too: Rhetorical Devices in Songs: Engaging & Kinesthetic “Question Trail” Activity (It fits perfectly with Speed Debating and will also get EVERYONE up and moving and having fun).

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