It's A Great Day to Be A Titan!

     I am so excited to teach at Ridgeland High School this year!  The students, my peers, and administrators make Ridgeland High School a sensational place to work!  I am a graduate of Belhaven University with a Bachelor of Arts in English. I have been a teacher for twenty-five years, and I just love teaching! I look forward to inspiring minds each day!  Currently, I teach the following courses: Debate CCSS and Oral Communications CCSS.  I am also the director/coach of our nationally acclaimed  Ridgeland High School Forensics team. I am looking forward to a wonderful year with all of my students!  I also look forward to coordinating the Poetry Out Loud Contest within our school !



    Bonnie Ballard


    Course Description Overviews:
    Debate CCSS:  


         Within Debate CCSS activities, Forensics team members will develop essential life skills and values.  Every child is empowered to become an effective communicator, ethical individual, critical thinker, and leader in a democratic society.  As members of the National Forensics League and Ridgeland High School team, students are expected to uphold the highest standards of integrity, humility, respect, leadership and service in the pursuit of excellent.   


         This class is designed to prepare students for competitive speaking and debating.  Its goal is to improve students’ skills in speaking, listening, composing, and reasoning through practical experiences and applications, especially during scheduled competitions.  This course includes a concentration in parliamentary procedure, the techniques of persuasion, means of detecting propaganda and fallacies, and the refinement of voice and diction.  It will feature an emphasis on forensics which will necessitate extensive practice and rehearsal in oral performances such as oral interpretations, humorous interpretations, dramatic interpretations, duo interpretations in humorous and dramatic, duo- acting, extemporaneous speaking, congressional debating and speaking, children’s literature, original oratories, and Lincoln-Douglas and Public Forum debating.  Since the course was developed and taught for competitive speaking, each student is expected to attend 4 Competition Tournaments within the year.  Rehearsals shall be figured into daily grades along with classroom academic activities.


    Course Content Standards:


         This course will develop and enhance a students’ speaking ability through class speaking, debating, and performing.  Students’ effectiveness will be demonstrated and challenged in competitive speaking, debating, and performing.  Students’ effectiveness will be demonstrated and challenged in competitive speaking tournaments held throughout the state on Friday and Saturday.  To reach his/her optimal level of accomplishment, each student is required to perform in a minimum of four competitive tournaments.  During each tournament, independent judges according to guidelines set by The National Speech and Debate Association will judge students.  Students will become independent readers and researchers in their pursuit of excellence.  Specific skills in the use of effective language and rhetoric will be developed.  Using language as a successful communication tool will be the focus of the course.




    *The student synthesizes information from a variety of sources

    *The student critically analyzes and evaluates facts and language (Debate)

    *The student uses language to clarify thought (Speech)

    *The student interprets various forms of written language (Interpretation)

    *The student demonstrates competence in oral communication (Speech)

    *The student demonstrates competency in reading for truth (Debate Issues)

    *The student selects and reads from many genres of literature (Speech)

    *The student makes cuttings from pieces of literature for competitive purposes

    *The student writes and orates persuasive speeches (Speech)

    *The student works collaboratively with other students (Duo-Interpretation)

    *The student will increase his ability to collect and organize ideas.

    *The student will enhance his ability to subordinate ideas

    *The student will increase his ability to evaluate evidence

    *The student will develop to see logical connections

    *The student will increase his ability to think and speak in outline terms.

    *The student will develop his ability to speak convincingly.

    *The student will develop his ability to adapt.


    Oral Communications CCSS:  This course provides instruction to develop each student's ability to acquire, analyze, and evaluate information in order to organize effective speeches and practice in delivering the speeches.  Areas of the communication process are explored.  Skills in this course will help the individual to think logically, clearly, and creatively. Oral Communications CCSS enhances a student's ability to communicate effectively in his or her academic, business, and social life.