Part 2 - Lesson 3: Solar Energy

Grades:
6-12
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

Students will work with local government staff or another local energy professional to propose a way to create enough solar power energy to supply the annual energy needs for a real building. Students will be provided with on-site options, and will...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will conduct an experiment to determine how electrical output changes as solar panels as the azimuth and tilts are incrementally changed.2.Students will conduct an experiment to determine how electrical output changes as solar panels are shaded.3.Students will work with the staff from your city or town to calculate the amount of potential electrical energy that can be collected from solar panels based upon the location and size of the system.4.Students will use existing solar data to determine the number of solar panels required to power the building in question.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
6 hours
Kidwind Small Water Pump

Designing a Faster Water Pump

Grades:
2-5
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

Students use all their prior knowledge to design and construct a water pump that can pump 1 cup of water the fastest.

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to use available tools to design and test a solar water pump, refine their design, test and finally evaluate their efforts. Through this process students will understand and gain experience with the engineering design process.
Author:
Mike Hellis
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
Solar Car Student

Solar Car Challenge: Solutions Briefing

Grades:
6-8
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

Students will play around with the solar car kits to familiarize themselves with the materials in preparation for the solar car engineering challenge.

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Learning Goal(s):
To introduce students to the problem that this project will attempt to solve: building a solar car that will go straight, far, and fast to win a race.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Karen Nelson
Estimated Activity Length:
50 min
Car Charger Schematic

Designing a Solar Phone Charger

Grades:
7-12
Unit:
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

This is the culminating activity for the unit “Off the Grid.” Students will be given some restricted parameters around which to design a solar powered battery operated phone (or other USB device) charger . They will charge the AA battery packs that have...

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Learning Goal(s):
1. Students will be able to design a device that can charge a phone with 4 hours of sun a day. 2. Students will use collected data and be able to support their design – i.e. the data will show that the unit will produce enough energy to charge a phone given it receives 4 hours of sun a day. 3. Students will also be able to calculate efficiency from their power calculations. 4. Students will be able to compare efficiencies of their circuit to others tested in this unit. 5. Students can calculate how much energy 4 hours of sunlight can produce on the solar modules they will use.
Pedagogy & Practice:
Author:
Brett McFarland
Estimated Activity Length:
5 hours

Keeping it Cool With Solar: Reflections of an Engineer

Grades:
K-2
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

This lesson is designed for one 30-minute session. Students analyze their data and reflect through video recording about how solar technology and their structures kept the ground (earth’s surface) cooler.

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Cost Effective Solar Cells: Titanium Dioxide Solar Cell Construction and Testing

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

This lesson is designed to be completed in two 80-minute sections. The teacher will show a basic procedure and video. The teacher will facilitate the construction of Organic Dye-Sensitized solar cells on coated glass plates with Titanium Dioxide. A fume...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will construct titanium dioxide coated “raspberry juice” solar cellsStudents will test titanium dioxide coated “raspberry juice” solar cells under various conditions 
Author:
Tom Wolverton
Estimated Activity Length:
3 hours

Part 3 – Lesson 1: A Plan for Renewable Energy Goals

Grades:
6-12
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

Students will utilize their home energy audits from Part 1, the information they gathered from the wind and solar assessments in Part 2, and the knowledge they gained from the solar project in Part 2 to devise a plan for your city or town to meet renewable...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will utilize previously acquired information about energy needs to create a renewable energy proposal for their city or town.2.Students will perform a solar energy audit on their homes and use class averages to calculate the amount of renewable energy that can be generated on residential properties.3.Students will assess where commercial and local government solar projects can occur within the city or town to meet the energy needs for non-residential consumers.4.Students will determine potential locations for larger scale wind and solar farms to augment the remaining energy needs of the community.5.Students will prepare a comprehensive renewable energy plan that totals the calculations for potential residential, commercial, and agency renewable energy generation.6.Students will prepare a brief PowerPoint presentation that summarizes their comprehensive plans that will be presented to a panel of elected officials or local experts/stakeholders.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
4 hours
Solar Water Heating Experiment

Setting Up the Experiment - Solar Water Heating

Grades:
4-5
Lesson Number:
8
Description:

Students will set up the experiment that they will use to determine the amount of energy from the sun that can be used to heat water and the variables that can help the exchange of heat most effectively. They will accomplish this through setting up simple...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will use their previous learning about observation and solar power to set up an experiment to determine the amount of heat that can be collected in water containers from the sun. Students will determine three variables that affect the jug’s absorption and trapping of energy from the sun. Students will take data measurements from these set ups in order to make evidence-based conclusions from the experiment.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Eric Gronseth
Estimated Activity Length:
40 min
Solar Boat Race

Collect Data and Compare Performance of Different Boat Designs

Grades:
4-6
Unit:
Lesson Number:
8
Description:

Students will race the solar speedboats, airboats, and surface submarines and then compare the performance results and of the various types of solar boats made by the class. Students will compare and contrast forces acting on the system by examining the...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will compare and contrast forces acting on the system by examining the results of the airboat, speedboat and surface submarine races. Students will collect quantitative and qualitative data points that denote the effectiveness of each boat design. Students will compare observations made during the race and draw conclusions from these observations.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Carol Patrick
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
0 sec
Solar Car Student

Solar Car Challenge: Redesigning Your Solution & Results of the Design Process Activity

Grades:
6-8
Lesson Number:
8
Description:

Students will play around with the solar car kits to familiarize themselves with the materials in preparation for the solar car engineering challenge.

Energy Content:
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More Details Less Details
Learning Goal(s):
To introduce students to the problem that this project will attempt to solve: building a solar car that will go straight, far, and fast to win a race.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Karen Nelson
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours