Science 5: Rebuttals

Rebuttals are the key to any great argument. We also really just like saying the word "rebuttal..." Rebuttal, rebuttal, rebuttal...

5th GradeScience
Elementary and Middle School5th Grade
LanguageEnglish Language

Transcript

00:25

And even though it doesn't have any sharp edges, it can be super effective.

00:28

First though, let's figure out what a rebuttal actually is.

00:31

When we rebut, we argue against a previous argument. [a chicken pointing at a chalkboard]

00:34

A good rebuttal pokes holes in our opponent's argument.

00:37

And just like a boat full of holes is of no use on the sea, an argument full of holes [a sailing man on a boat with holes]

00:41

is of no use anywhere.

00:42

The only difference is when we're rebutting, we use facts and quotes to support our side…

00:46

…we can see how rebuttals work with a couple of examples

00:47

Lets say theres an argument your drill will rebut is: "Power tools are really quiet." [two people debating on pro-fracking and anti-fracking]

00:48

We can see how rebuttals work with a couple of examples.

00:50

Let's say there's an argument about fracking between two sides: one pro-fracking, one

00:53

anti-fracking.

00:54

The pro side argues that fracking saves money, because Americans no longer need to buy fossil

00:57

fuels from other countries.

00:58

If the anti side wanted to counter this argument with a rebuttal, they could look for facts [woman searching a macbook for facts]

01:03

that show that fracking doesn't actually save money.

01:06

Fracking is such an expensive process that the cost of oil per barrel is way higher in

01:09

the U.S. than in places that use more conventional forms of drilling… [two barrels of oil on a stage of a fracking debate]

01:12

…so the anti side could use this fact to rebut the pro's argument.

01:16

The pro side could also do some rebutting of their own.

01:18

Let's say the anti side starts talking about how fracking might pollute ground water.

01:22

This could be a great time for the pro side to rebut the argument with a quote from an

01:25

expert scientist…

01:26

…saying that though we think fracking might affect ground water, at this point we just [a white haired scientist stood on stage]

01:30

don't know for sure.

01:31

So as the argument goes on, both sides can hurl rebuttals back and forth to their hearts'

01:35

content.

01:36

As long as they stick to rebuttals [a man wielding a sword on the stage].

01:37

Seriously, leave the swords at home. Dangerous