This example of a persuasive speech and its outline about Benjamin Franklin's discovery (or non-discovery as the case may be) of electricity should give you an idea of how to structure your speech,
It's a whole lot easier to sit down and write on a topic if you have it properly formatted before you begin.
Without a proper outline it's easy to lose track of the points you want to make in the order you want to make them.
This speech is light-hearted - almost jokey in places - so be sure to adopt a tone that's relevant to YOUR subject. Nevertheless, it gives you an idea of how to organize your thoughts.
Putting in the work of writing a persuasive speech outline allows you to write your presentation much more quickly and efficiently. It's actually much easier to write an outline than a full-blown speech, so give it a try!
So now that I've told you the three things I will prove, let's start with the first one.
I. How hard is it to attract lightning.
A. You have to have something that attracts lightning.
B. You have to be at the right spot at the right time.
Now we know the conditions that have to be in effect, which leads me to my next point.
II. Ben's method couldn't work.
A. A kite back in those days couldn't fly in the rain.
B. A key and a plain glass jar couldn't hold lightning.
So now that you know that, I'll move on to my next point of proof.
III. Ben Franklin did not discover electricity.
A. He would have died if his kite had caught lightning.
B. There is no evidence that he did it.
So, this speech about Benjamin Franklin is silly and only intended to show the structure of a persuasive speech outline. Creating this type outline for a persuasive speech has always helped me write on my chosen topic more quickly. Take the time to create an outline, and you'll find that your speech flows more smoothly, particularly when you get up to present it to an audience!
Would you like to read a sample speech created from the outline above? Here's the first draft below:
As we all know, history is filled with stories of notable events and amazing people. These stories have captivated and fascinated us for centuries, from Hurricane Katrina to the 9/11 attacks and from Pearl Harbor to the Big Bang Theory. But have you ever stopped to wonder if there might be more to these stories than we've been told or if they're even true? Today, I'm here to persuade you that one of these iconic figures, Benjamin Franklin, is a phony concerning one long-standing exaggeration - the discovery of electricity with a kite.
I'm going to prove three things to you today: first, how difficult it is to attract a lightning bolt; second, the method that Franklin used couldn't possibly have worked; and third, that Franklin did not discover electricity. So with that preview, let's get started with the first point.
How hard is it to attract lightning? First, you need something that will attract lightning. To attract lightning, you need something that will act as a conductor. This could be a metal object or something pointed and sharp that you point towards the sky.
Second, you must be in the right place at the right time. To attract lightning, you must be in an area prone to lightning strikes. You also need to be at a high elevation, and you need to be outside in the rain when lightning is present.
If Ben did attract lightning and found the right place at the right time, Franklin's method couldn't work. A kite wouldn't be able to fly in the rain. Kites back in Franklin's day were weak and flimsy. They were made of thin paper and wooden sticks so they couldn't withstand the rain and wind.
Had the kit flown in the wind and rain, a key and a glass jar wouldn't be able to hold lightning. A regular metal key wouldn't be strong enough to stop a lightning bolt in its tracks and redirect it into a jar. And even if it could, the jar wouldn't be able to hold the lightning and cause it to glow as electricity does.
And finally, Franklin did not discover electricity as evident in his long life and the inadequate evidence of the event itself.
Ben would have been killed if his kite had caught lightning. If Franklin's kite had caught a lightning bolt, the electricity would have traveled down the string and shocked him to death. And let's remember that Franklin didn't know about plastic or grounding techniques so he wouldn't have been protected from the electricity in any way.
There is no evidence that Franklin discovered electricity other than mythology. There is no evidence that Franklin's kite caught lightning or that he conducted any experiments with electricity. There is no piece of the kite on display in a museum, and there are no keys or pieces of the jar that were supposedly used in the experiment.
So, in conclusion, Benjamin Franklin may have been a great man and accomplished many things, but he did not discover electricity. I've proven to you that it's challenging to attract lightning, that Franklin's method couldn't possibly have worked, and that there is no evidence to support the claim that he discovered electricity. The story of Ben Franklin discovering electricity with a key on a kite is one notable event by a unique historical figure that you should question.
How good is the persuasive speech about Ben Franklin's discovery of electricity? Honestly, The sample does not do well on two elements of the persuasive speech rubric below. First, the speech is a fun example that does not include a strong emotional appeal. Second, the sample does not develop strong and credible evidence but instead relies on circumstantial evidence and logic, which are less valuable than physical evidence, eyewitness testimony, or expert opinions.
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