POWERtown™ teaches valuable lessons at area schools


The air sizzled with the sound of electricity inside Tadlock Elementary School in Frisco ISD, much to the surprise and shock of the third-grade students in the audience.

CoServ’s Energy Education Team used the new POWERtown™ presentation to demonstrate multiple scenarios in which children or adults could come across high-voltage power lines in everyday life. It’s similar to the outdoor arcing demonstration that CoServ has been doing for years but on a smaller scale for indoor presentations.

The children learned what makes a good conductor, what to do if they see a fallen power line, what the flags in the grass mean and what to do if a power line falls on a vehicle.

In one scenario, a power line has fallen on a metal fence and then a figure representing a girl walks toward the fence and receives a shock.

Energy Education Specialist Justin Porterfield explained that electricity moves faster than the speed of light and is always trying to reach the ground – and it will travel through the human body if that’s the fastest or only way to get there.

“This girl doesn’t know it but there’s a power line on her fence and if she touches it, she gets electrocuted,” Justin said. “We need to be careful around power lines.”

Another scenario shows what could happen if a ladder, at home or on a fire truck, comes in contact with an electric line.

“Does that look like fire? That’s because it is. The air molecules get hot around that arc and they pop,” Justin said. “That was miniature lightning and miniature thunder.”

Every arc elicited a noticeable reaction from the crowd of third graders.

“I think it taught the kids a lot about electricity that they don’t really know. It showed the seriousness of electricity that we have all around us but at times can be really dangerous,” said Kendall Rives, third grade math, science and social studies teacher at Tadlock Elementary School.

Want to schedule the Energy Education Team to come to your school with POWERtown™ or one of the other presentations? Visit CoServ.com/Presentations.