Teaching students to debate can be a tough subject, but it’s something they’ll find valuable throughout their lives. Debates teach kids to research their topic, make informed choices, and argue effectively using facts instead of emotion. These debate topics for middle school students include light-hearted fun topics that are great for beginners. You’ll also find more serious and even somewhat controversial topics, any of which should be appropriate for kids aged 10 through 14. You’re sure to find some that will engage your students in these four categories below:

  1. Homework should be banned.
  2. It’s better to be good at academics than to be good at sports.
  3. Students should be required to wear school uniforms.
  4. Students should be punished for using curse words.
  5. Year-round school is better for students.
  6. Schools should require physical education (gym class) through 12th grade.
  7. All students should be required to volunteer in their community.
  8. Junk food should be banned in schools.
  9. All middle school students should learn a foreign language.
  10. Single-gender schools are better for students.
  11. Math is the most important school subject.
  12. Letter grades should be abolished.
  13. Teachers should be replaced by computers.
  14. Students shouldn’t be graded on their handwriting.
  15. Kids who get better grades in school will be more successful in life.
  16. Sometimes it’s okay to cheat on homework or a test.
  17. Students who fail a test should be given the chance to take it again.
  18. Students should be allowed to grade teachers.
  19. Kids should be able to bring their pets to school.
  20. Schools should give middle school students more recess time.
  21. The school day should be shorter.
  22. Schools should eliminate dress codes.
  23. College should be free for everyone who wants to attend.
  24. Schools should be allowed to ban some books from their libraries.
  25. Book smarts are better than street smarts.

  1. All people should have free internet access.
  2. Playing violent video games makes people more likely to be violent in real life.
  3. Reality television depicts real life.
  4. The minimum age to own a smartphone should be 16.
  5. Students should be allowed to use phones in class.
  6. Macs are better than PCs.
  7. Androids are better than iPhones.
  8. Kids under 13 should be allowed to use social media sites like TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat.
  9. Students should not be allowed to watch TV on school nights.
  10. Social media does more harm than good.
  11. Video games are better than board games.
  12. Reading books is better than watching TV.
  13. All paper documents should be replaced with electronic versions.
  14. Books are always better than the movies that are made from them.
  15. Parents should use their kids’ cell phones to track where they are.
  16. Playing video games makes you smarter.
  17. Scientists should try to develop a way for everyone to live forever.
  18. Paper books are better than e-books.
  19. Schools should have surveillance cameras in classrooms and hallways.
  20. Movie ratings (G, PG, PG-13, and R) should be done away with.

  1. Professional athletes and celebrities deserve to make more money than the average person.
  2. People have a responsibility to help one another out.
  3. No one should ever tell a lie.
  4. Girls face more peer pressure than boys.
  5. The voting age should be lowered to 12.
  6. Every member of a family should have daily chores.
  7. All museums and zoos should be free to everyone.
  8. All people should be vegetarians.
  9. Democracy is the best form of government.
  10. All Americans should be required to vote.
  11. Cigarette smoking and vaping should be banned entirely.
  12. Parents should be allowed to read their children’s private diaries.
  13. Giving is better than receiving.
  14. Receiving a regular allowance is good for kids.
  15. Parents should be punished for their children’s mistakes.
  16. Real Christmas trees are better than artificial ones.
  17. Animals should not be kept in zoos.
  18. All kids should play on the same sports teams, regardless of gender.
  19. It is better to save some of your allowance than to spend it all.
  20. Kids should be allowed to stay up as late as they want.
  21. Happiness is more important than success.
  22. The driving age should be lowered to 14.
  23. Plastic bottles should be banned.
  24. Parents should have to take a parenting class before having a child.
  25. If you find money on the ground, it’s automatically yours to keep.
  26. It is better to be kind than to be truthful.
  27. All kids should have a playground or park close enough to their house to walk to.
  28. Kids should be allowed to have credit cards.
  29. Living in the city is better than living in the country.
  30. It’s important to spend money exploring space.

  1. All families should have a pet.
  2. Dogs are better pets than cats.
  3. Summer is better than winter.
  4. Pepperoni is the best pizza topping.
  5. Candy should be given as rewards in the classroom.
  6. Clowns are more scary than funny.
  7. Every home should have a robot.
  8. There is intelligent life on other planets.
  9. The egg came before the chicken.
  10. Modern music is better than classical music.
  11. Xbox is better than PlayStation.
  12. Peanut butter is better than Nutella.
  13. Football is better than soccer.
  14. Everyone should make their bed every day.
  15. It would be better to be able to fly than to be able to turn invisible.
  16. Harry Potter is better than The Lord of the Rings.
  17. Pluto should still be considered a planet.
  18. Santa Claus’s elves should be paid minimum wage.
  19. Hot chocolate is better than a chocolate milkshake.
  20. Fruit counts as dessert.
  21. People should be allowed to go barefoot anywhere if they want to.
  22. Fiction is better than non-fiction.
  23. Everyone should learn to play a musical instrument.
  24. Werewolves are more dangerous than vampires.
  25. Kids shouldn’t have to go to school on their birthdays.

What are your favorite debate topics for middle school? Come share on the WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook.

Plus, How To Use Fishbowl Discussions To Engage Every Student.

100 Winning Debate Topics for Middle School Students