Skip to main content

NC State Extension

4-H Electric Presentations

en Español

El inglés es el idioma de control de esta página. En la medida en que haya algún conflicto entre la traducción al inglés y la traducción, el inglés prevalece.

Al hacer clic en el enlace de traducción se activa un servicio de traducción gratuito para convertir la página al español. Al igual que con cualquier traducción por Internet, la conversión no es sensible al contexto y puede que no traduzca el texto en su significado original. NC State Extension no garantiza la exactitud del texto traducido. Por favor, tenga en cuenta que algunas aplicaciones y/o servicios pueden no funcionar como se espera cuando se traducen.

English is the controlling language of this page. To the extent there is any conflict between the English text and the translation, English controls.

Clicking on the translation link activates a free translation service to convert the page to Spanish. As with any Internet translation, the conversion is not context-sensitive and may not translate the text to its original meaning. NC State Extension does not guarantee the accuracy of the translated text. Please note that some applications and/or services may not function as expected when translated.

Collapse ▲

The purpose of the 4-H Electric Demonstration/ Presentation is to allow participants to demonstrate their knowledge in the area of basic electricity, electric energy, conservation of energy, and other related electrical principles and facts. The demonstration and/or presentation should share knowledge learned from others such as electricians, science teachers, engineers, and professionals who work in the field of electricity.
The demonstration/presentation areas are divided into three age divisions:

Ages: 9 – 10 Ages: 11 – 13 Senior Ages: 14 – 18

Age determined as of January 1st. Contestants are judged according to the North Carolina 4-H Presentation Score Sheet rules and guidelines. You are encouraged to obtain a copy of this form prior to competing in either of the two divisions.


District Award: $75 Scholarships to State 4-H Congress for each of the following divisions:

  • Ages: 9 – 10
  • Ages: 11 – 13
  • Ages: 14 – 18

State Award: Gold winners will receive a $50 award in each age division.

Donor of Awards: North Carolina Association of Electric Cooperatives


The following information should be useful to you in preparation for the 4-H Electric Presentation. Please use this information as a guide to helping you organize your presentation for competition at the county, district and state levels. This information should serve as a foundation for your presentation as you seek additional supportive materials.

Step I.

Select a topic: Why is this topic important to know about? Who will benefit?

How will others use this information? Is this topic of interest to me?

(These are only a few examples you may use)

  1. Demonstrate LED (Light Emitting Diodes)-
      • Why do they work?
      • How do they work?
      • What are their uses?
  2. Demonstrate and explain how computers use electricity for their operations.
  3. Explain how solar energy is captured, stored and used.
  4. Explain and demonstrate why magnets work.
  5. Explain and demonstrate how energy savings devices operate.

Remember to choose one central theme, develop this theme thoroughly, be familiar with the terminology and
be well informed. This allows you to be prepared for the unexpected.

Step II.

Selection of support materials: Materials used should support your topic.

The following questions should be asked:

  • Will the judges be able to see my posters, wire, tools, etc?
  • Do I know the proper way to use these tools?
  • What references were used?

Additional Topics For Presentations
(These are only a few examples you may use):

  • Showing valance, cornice lights for home
  • Extension cord repair or construction
  • Portable heat-lamp holder for brooding chicks, pigs, and drying paint
  • Unusual lamp (coke can, etc.)
  • Care and maintenance of electric motors
  • Portable floodlight for outdoor use, games, etc.
  • Explain and demonstrate how to read a meter
  • Explain and demonstrate wire sizes, volts, amps, and watts
  • How to replace blown fuses and their purpose
  • Explain and demonstrate what a circuit is (series & parallel)
  • Explain, demonstrate, and make electromagnet (telegraph or bell, etc.)
  • Make a model house or farmstead with lights or wiring to buildings
  • Show how to reverse direction of electric motor
  • Construct a model hotbed
  • Show how to protect water pipes from freezing with heating tapes, etc.
  • Explain and demonstrate radiant, conducted and convected heat and give examples
  • Show how to make motor portable for use on several tools
  • Make up board of wire splices
  • Demonstrate effect of overload on an electric circuit
  • Make test lights
  • Microwave cooking (how it operates)
  • Use and care of small appliances (choose one appliance)
  • Care and use of electric hand tools (choose one)
  • Choosing incandescent or fluorescent lamps (bulbs)
  • Selection and care of lamps and lamp shades (study lamp)
  • Proper grounding of portable tools for safety
  • The function of a “ground fault interrupter”
  • Installing or replacing switches or receptacle

Presentation Tips

A presentation is like telling a story

It has an introduction

  • State your topic – title – subject matter
  • Tell why you choose this topic
  • Show, explain or describe materials or items to be used

a body of information

  • Know your subject matter. What are the procedures or steps?
  • Present facts, a brief history, and pros and cons
  • If it’s an item (thing) — tell how it works – show how it’s put together or disassembled
  • What are its properties? durability, water resistant, etc.
  • Is it special in some way — has it got several uses or is it recyclable? Does it need special care and maintenance etc.?
  • What are the do’s and don’ts to consider when you are making, using or discarding the item.

A story has a conclusion

  • Sums up what you want people to understand or have learned.
  • Acknowledge those who helped you prepare your information or state where you got your information from.

Some basic presentation tips

  1. If you are well prepared than there is no reason not to enjoy showing others what you know.
  2. Organize everything up front. Collect tools and parts needed and put them in the order of its use this way you can’t forget a step. Make sure your poster information is in steps so you and your audience can follow along easily.
  3. Tools/object parts and posters are props. They can help you keep focused during your presentation. When using items like tools make sure they are in working order. If it’s a poster make sure it can be read from a distance.
  4. Don’t try to explain every little thing. Remember you only have 5- 10 minutes.
  5. Speak clearly and slowly – Don’t be too loud or soft. Be sure the audience can hear you and if you are not sure ask them. Remember presentations and demonstrations are just friendly conversations between you and some other people.
  6. If you use a word that others may not understand like a name of a tool or an electrical procedure explain it to them quickly.
  7. Do make eye contact with all members of your audience because it makes them feel like you are very interested in talking to them.
  8. Do move around remember you are not a stiff statue. Do use hand gestures.
  9. Do allow the audience to ask questions at the end of your presentation.
  10. Don’t read your presentation. You can use short notes, but reading a presentation gets difficult for your audience to follow plus you are not making eye contact. Remember if you are prepared the information flows easily.
  11. Do practice your presentation with a partner or in front of the mirror. A little practice never hurts…
  12. Do remember to thank your audience and those that helped you with your presentation.

More information:

Grant Ellington
NC State University
Biological & Agricultural Engineering
Campus Box 7625
Raleigh, North Carolina 27695-7625
e-mail: Grant Ellington grant