U.S. Energy Information Administration
Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»
See how this Simulation/Interactive supports the Next Generation Science Standards»
Middle School: 1 Cross Cutting Concept
High School: 3 Performance Expectations, 1 Disciplinary Core Idea, 2 Science and Engineering Practices
1.7 Units of energy.
4.1 Humans transfer and transform energy.
Notes From Our Reviewers
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Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy |
- The link on the bottom of the page– http://www.eia.gov/kids/energy.cfm?page=us_energy_use-basics– has good information about the basics of energy.
- The EIA Energy Kids website (http://www.eia.gov/kids/) provides good background information and resources for learners about energy in general, and the EIA website (http://www.eia.gov/) has current information and access to energy data that can be used by students and teachers for lessons.
About the Science
- This online calculator completes unit conversions for various energy sources including: coal, electricity, natural gas, crude oil, gasoline, diesel and heating oil, residential heating fuels, and for measuring energy in food (food calories versus energy calories).
- Comment from expert scientist: Gives access to estimates for the energy density of fuels. The precision of the results is misleading in that each energy density is an estimate. For example, the energy density of coal varies by at least a factor of two depending on the rank/type. Unless the source for the conversion is very specific, the precision of the calculated results should reflect the precision of the conversion factor.
About the Pedagogy
- This is a great tool when teaching about different units of energy and the energy produced by different resources.
- It also has an excellent explanation of scientific notation.
Technical Details/Ease of Use
Next Generation Science Standards See how this Simulation/Interactive supports:
Performance Expectations: 3
HS-PS3-3: Design, build, and refine a device that works within given constraints to convert one form of energy into another form of energy
HS-ESS3-2: Evaluate competing design solutions for developing, managing, and utilizing energy and mineral resources based on cost-benefit ratios.
HS-ESS3-3: Create a computational simulation to illustrate the relationships among management of natural resources, the sustainability of human populations, and biodiversity.
Disciplinary Core Ideas: 1
HS-ESS3.A2:All forms of energy production and other resource extraction have associated economic, social, environmental, and geopolitical costs and risks as well as benefits. New technologies and social regulations can change the balance of these factors.
Science and Engineering Practices: 2
HS-P5.5:Apply ratios, rates, percentages, and unit conversions in the context of complicated measurement problems involving quantities with derived or compound units (such as mg/mL, kg/m3, acre-feet, etc.).
HS-P5.3:Apply techniques of algebra and functions to represent and solve scientific and engineering problems.