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From Grid to Home
http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/energy/activities/32718.html

Marie Johnson, SERC - On the Cutting Edge Collection

In this classroom activity, students analyze regional energy usage data and their own energy bills to gain an understanding of individual consumption, regional uses, costs, and sources of energy.

Activity takes one class period.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

ngssSee how this Activity supports the Next Generation Science Standards»
Middle School: 1 Disciplinary Core Idea, 4 Cross Cutting Concepts, 5 Science and Engineering Practices
High School: 1 Disciplinary Core Idea, 2 Cross Cutting Concepts, 4 Science and Engineering Practices

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

About Teaching the Guiding Principle
Other materials addressing GPe
About Teaching the Guiding Principle
Other materials addressing GPg

Energy Literacy

Economic security is impacted by energy choices.
Other materials addressing:
7.1 Economic security.
Humans transfer and transform energy from the environment into forms useful for human endeavors.
Other materials addressing:
4.1 Humans transfer and transform energy.
Humans transport energy from place to place.
Other materials addressing:
4.4 Humans transport energy.
Amount of energy used can be calculated and monitored.
Other materials addressing:
6.8 Calculating and monitoring energy use.

Excellence in Environmental Education Guidelines

1. Questioning, Analysis and Interpretation Skills:C) Collecting information
Other materials addressing:
C) Collecting information.
4. Personal and Civic Responsibility:D) Accepting personal responsibility
Other materials addressing:
D) Accepting personal responsibility.
2. Knowledge of Environmental Processes and Systems:2.4 Environment and Society:D) Technology
Other materials addressing:
D) Technology.
2. Knowledge of Environmental Processes and Systems:2.4 Environment and Society:E) Environmental Issues
Other materials addressing:
E) Environmental Issues.
3. Skills for Understanding and Addressing Environmental Issues:3.1 Skills for Analyzing and Investigating Environmental Issues:B) Sorting out the consequences of issues
Other materials addressing:
B) Sorting out the consequences of issues.
3. Skills for Understanding and Addressing Environmental Issues:3.1 Skills for Analyzing and Investigating Environmental Issues:C) Identifying and evaluation alternative solutions and courses of action
Other materials addressing:
C) Identifying and evaluation alternative solutions and courses of action.
3. Skills for Understanding and Addressing Environmental Issues:3.2 Decision-Making and Citizenship Skills:C) Planning and taking action
Other materials addressing:
C) Planning and taking action.

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • Carefully analyze the worksheet to make sure it is appropriate for your students - modify as appropriate.
  • The worksheet will likely need scaffolding for younger students and higher level questions for older students.
  • Younger students may require pre-teaching to calculate the percentages of CO2 emission.
  • This activity could be used as an introduction to the Lifestyle Project http://serc.carleton.edu/introgeo/enviroprojects/lifestyle.html (also part of the CLEAN collection).

About the Science

  • Students use real data.
  • Data is well referenced.
  • Links are given to find and use additional data about the source of energy in the individual region. As this information will change over time, seek up-to-date data as needed.
  • Comments from expert scientist: All of the sources are credible and provide up to date information. Because every student might not be able to bring their energy bill, it would be useful to use the teacher's bill, or have example bills from different regions.

About the Pedagogy

  • Activity can be done individually or in small groups, possibly as a homework assignment.
  • Opportunity for students to share results.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • All necessary materials available, including data.

Next Generation Science Standards See how this Activity supports:

Middle School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 1

MS-ESS3.D1:Human activities, such as the release of greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels, are major factors in the current rise in Earth’s mean surface temperature (global warming). Reducing the level of climate change and reducing human vulnerability to whatever climate changes do occur depend on the understanding of climate science, engineering capabilities, and other kinds of knowledge, such as understanding of human behavior and on applying that knowledge wisely in decisions and activities.

Cross Cutting Concepts: 4

Systems and System Models, Energy and Matter, Patterns

MS-C4.1: Systems may interact with other systems; they may have sub-systems and be a part of larger complex systems.

MS-C5.3:Energy may take different forms (e.g. energy in fields, thermal energy, energy of motion).

MS-C5.4:The transfer of energy can be tracked as energy flows through a designed or natural system.

MS-C1.4:Graphs, charts, and images can be used to identify patterns in data.

Science and Engineering Practices: 5

Analyzing and Interpreting Data, Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking, Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions, Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information

MS-P4.1:Construct, analyze, and/or interpret graphical displays of data and/or large data sets to identify linear and nonlinear relationships.

MS-P4.4:Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence for phenomena.

MS-P5.1: Use digital tools (e.g., computers) to analyze very large data sets for patterns and trends.

MS-P6.5:Apply scientific reasoning to show why the data or evidence is adequate for the explanation or conclusion

MS-P8.2:Integrate qualitative and/or quantitative scientific and/or technical information in written text with that contained in media and visual displays to clarify claims and findings.

High School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 1

HS-ESS2.D3:Changes in the atmosphere due to human activity have increased carbon dioxide concentrations and thus affect climate.

Cross Cutting Concepts: 2

Cause and effect, Energy and Matter

HS-C2.2:Cause and effect relationships can be suggested and predicted for complex natural and human designed systems by examining what is known about smaller scale mechanisms within the system.

HS-C5.2:Changes of energy and matter in a system can be described in terms of energy and matter flows into, out of, and within that system.

Science and Engineering Practices: 4

Analyzing and Interpreting Data, Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking, Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions, Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information

HS-P4.1:Analyze data using tools, technologies, and/or models (e.g., computational, mathematical) in order to make valid and reliable scientific claims or determine an optimal design solution.

HS-P5.2:Use mathematical, computational, and/or algorithmic representations of phenomena or design solutions to describe and/or support claims and/or explanations.

HS-P6.1:Make a quantitative and/or qualitative claim regarding the relationship between dependent and independent variables.

HS-P8.2:Compare, integrate and evaluate sources of information presented in different media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively) as well as in words in order to address a scientific question or solve a problem.


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