Join | Donate | Volunteer:


Become part of a 5,000+ community which believes that speaking and listening skills are central to personal fulfilment and cultural understanding

Become a member


One-off or regular donations are vital to our work, helping us ensure that young people everywhere have the oracy skills they need to thrive



We’re hugely grateful to those who volunteer their time in helping to organise and run ESU programmes and competitions. Find out how you could help


‘We rely on the generous support of our members, donors and volunteers to ensure we can reach those children who need our help most’

Home > Programmes > Discover Your Voice

‘I felt my voice mattered’

Discover Your Voice

Key facts

  • What: Full- or half-day bespoke debating or public speaking workshop
  • Age: Years 5-13
  • When: On demand
  • Delivery: Trainer-led
Enquire about a session

in brief

Our fun and engaging workshops for both primary and secondary schools help your students communicate more effectively with others, developing their ability to think critically, build cohesive arguments, and improving their delivery, listening and response skills. Students are also introduced to the formats used in our renowned national debating and public speaking competitions which can open up opportunities for personal development, networking and travel.

Workshops can be tailored to focus on your students’ specific needs, such as a particular skill set, subject area or competition format.

Watch the video to see how Discover Your Voice could benefit your students.

Why do it

  • Excellent taster in debate or public speaking skills
  • Flexible – workshops can be tailored to suit your class
  • Supportive, experienced trainers
  • Lesson plan and resources provided
  • Encourages full-class participation
  • Promotes spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) education
  • Chance to observe someone else teaching your class and how your students learn
  • Boost children’s confidence, critical thinking and listening skills
  • Transferable lesson plans to encourage oracy and debate across the curriculum
We’re not usually allowed to talk in class, but debating is all about talking. The subjects are interesting and different to what you usually talk about, too. It’s really fun and it gives you loads of confidence – it’s made me less shy.


Year 7 Discover Your Voice participant

‘It’s not often in teaching that you get a chance to observe your children learning, so there is something really beneficial about being able to sit back and watch your class and realise how they respond to different arguments, how they respond to different types of teaching. Most teachers haven’t ever done debating, so it’s lovely to be able to get ideas of what a debate looks like and how to set one up in class, so you are then able to take forward the ideas the mentors have shown you and run them in, say, a history lesson, debating who was the greater leader in WWII for example.’

‘I’ve also found that the SEN children in my class love these workshops because it’s all about talking and, because their opinion is valued, because they are given the same amount of time as other people to talk, it really means that they feel that they’re contributing, and they become much more involved. It’s lovely to see them coming out of their shells slightly and joining in the whole class discussion.’

Rosie Unwin, teacher, Rosendale school, London

Find out more

Talk to us about a workshop in your school

Share Page