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Five-minute speech topics

Updated March 23, 2017

When asked to give a five-minute speech, your first reaction might be that five minutes is not very long to get a point across. However, an advertiser spends about 30 seconds to get a point across in an advertisement, so five minutes is actually quite a bit of time to make a point. Use these five-minute speech topics to determine what you are going to say to impress your audience.

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Demonstration Speech

A demonstration speech is meant to show the audience how to do something, either by educating or informing them on how to do something. For a five-minute speech you want to choose something that is not too complex. Some good examples include how to fold a T-shirt or how to play a hand of blackjack. Choose ideas that can be demonstrated in as little as five steps and that will not require a huge amount of set up or tear down.

Informative Speech

An informative speech gives educational and need-to-know information to the audience. Five-minute speeches should consist of four to five main points. An example of this would be a speech on NATO. Give a description of what NATO stands for, who NATO represents and how NATO is structured, then discuss current conflicts NATO might be involved in. You want to peak the interest of the audience by letting them know how this information affects their daily lives or futures.

Persuasive Speech

Persuasive speeches should begin with an attention getter that includes a reason for the audience to listen and a thesis statement. Then, express a specific need and a solution. For example, if you want to persuade someone that drinking and driving is dangerous, begin with a statistic on the number of people hurt or killed each year in drunk driving accidents. Next, talk about how this number needs to come down and how you think the audience can help in making that happen. Examples might include education or awareness campaigns.

Slide Show Speech

You may have been asked to give a five-minute presentation speech on a product or a service using a slide show. Just as you only have four or five main points for a speech, you should only have four or five slides. Use the first slide to introduce yourself. Use the second as an illustration to a funny or suspenseful story. The next slide should convey your main point. Break this main point down into two or three concepts and present those on the next slide. End the presentation on a positive note.

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About the Author

Based in Las Vegas, Jody Wilber has been freelance writing since 2004. Her articles have appeared in "Christianity Today," "The Upper Room" and "The Review Journal." She is formally a high-school English and journalism teacher. She graduated from California Baptist University with a Bachelor of Arts in English and went on to achieve her Master in Education from Sierra Nevada College.

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