Engineering Clean Energy for Our Community

Grades:
4-5
Lesson Number:
3
Description:

This lesson plan will engage students in a design process to power a motor using a variety of energy sources. Students will compare different clean energy sources to decide which energy source will complete their design goal. Students will experiment with...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will define “clean energy” and explain at least 4 types of alternative energy sources2.Students will compare local energy sources and national energy sources to potential energy sources being used or developed.3.Students will experiment with wind energy, solar energy, and hydrogen fuel cell model vehicles to explore alternative fuel sources.4.Students will measure voltage produced and record data in a table format.5.Students will discuss pros and cons of the different types of energy.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
5 hours

Engineering 101

Grades:
5-8
Lesson Number:
3
Description:

This lesson is designed for 3, 50-minute sessions. The students will engage in multiple mini-engineering challenges to develop their understanding of structures and how to build models. The students will also learn to use the 3D pens to create a 3D object...

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Keeping it Cool With Solar: Design Time

Grades:
K-2
Lesson Number:
3
Description:

This lesson is designed for one 30-minute session. Students are shown materials. Students are asked “How might we design a structure that will keep the ground the coolest?” Students design their structures by discussing, collaborating, and drawing....

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Cost Effective Solar Cells: Solar Panel Basics

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
3
Description:

This lesson is designed to be completed in one 40-minute section. Students will have already learned the concepts of basic circuits, including voltage, current, power, parallel and serial circuits. Teachers will then explain the basic concept of solar...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will review circuitry basics and solar cell layersStudents will model N-layers, P-layers, and the N-P junction in a physical circuit activity
Author:
Tom Wolverton
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour

Part 1- Lesson 3: Home Energy Audit

Grades:
6-12
Lesson Number:
3
Description:

During this lesson, students will focus on where energy is used within their homes, how energy consumption is calculated, and how energy consumption can be reduced. Students will conduct a home energy audit and determine multiple ways to reduce energy...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will identify all ways that energy is consumed within their homes.2.Students will perform an energy audit of their home and calculate the amount of energy used by each electronic device and appliances.3.Students will create a spreadsheet demonstrating the electricity required to operate each electronic device and appliance, along with a summary of finding that clearly identifies how energy consumption can be reduced within their home.4.Students will explore various ways to reduce energy (goal is 30% reduction).5.Students will propose a variety of energy reduction plans and present those options to their families for discussion.6.After discussion with their families, students will itemize the agreed upon plan and identify specific actions that result in quantifiable outcomes that will implemented to reduce energy consumption by their families.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
4 hours
Design a 50 Year Energy Plan

Scaling up to Power Production Let’s use Data to Optimize the Performance of a Solar Cell Array

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Somewhat similar to the first part of the wind turbine project from Lesson 3, students are tasked with optimizing the performance of a photovoltaic system. This objective both allows students to apply the engineering-design process they absorbed in...

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Solar Car Race

Collect Data...Then Compare and Contrast

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

Students will race different iterations of solar cars: geared and pulley-system cars using varying gear ratios. Students will have the opportunity to make predictions, record data, and explain the results centered on the selection of these different...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will:Compare and contrast forces acting on the system by examining the results of the solar car races.Explain the mechanics of gear ratios and demonstrate the most useful ratio to use when constructing solar cars.Explain the benefits of employing a pulley-system in their car construction. Students will understand the importance of selecting measurable, specific variables to compare in their data collection process in order to make evidence-based claims.
Author:
Carol Patrick
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
Sphero SPRK+

Solar SPRK+ Electricity Fundamentals and Photovoltaics

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

Students work through a number of solar circuit explorations that culminate in a challenge to charge the Sphero SPRK+ devices with solar panels. In this exploration, students will investigate the requirements of various loads, working toward the voltage...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will determine how to create various types of circuits in order to power loads with different electric needs.Students will identify the electric needs of a Sphero charger and build a circuit needed to charge this device.
Author:
Deb Frankel
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
Solar Updraft

Let's Build Our Wind and Solar Energy Toy

Grades:
3-8
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Students will combine what they learned in previous lessons using their investigations of convection-related phenomena to design a device that will convert light energy from the sun into thermal energy and utilize the resulting convection currents. Their...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will determine that thermal energy resulting from the sun’s radiation can create an updraft that will power a turbine to spin.                                                Students will identify characteristics of turbine design that improve the success of their device.Students will utilize content from previous phenomena they investigated, such as the chimney stack effect and Norwegian candle toys, to determine how to best harness the energy transformed by their device from the sun.
Pedagogy & Practice:
Author:
Lisa Morgan
Estimated Activity Length:
3 hours
Earth Sun

Saving Lives with Solar Ovens

Grades:
3-5
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Students will be introduced to Solar Cookers International. Students will learn about different solar cooker designs and how they function. Students will learn the pros and cons on the use of solar ovens in developing countries. Students will gain an...

Energy Content:
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Learning Goal(s):
Students will learn about different solar cooker designs and how they function. Students will learn the customs, jobs, food and clothing of people in different countries of Africa.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Lisa Morgan
Estimated Activity Length:
50 min