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Margaret M. Loos
The unit is designed for eighth grade students but it may be adapted for physical science or environmental education. It should be accomplished in a six week period. The first segment is unusual in that it is concerned with the energy system of the human body but hopefully this will take advantage of adolescents’ interest in their own bodies.
The three sections of the unit are:
YOU AND ENERGY
ENERGY AND THE CITY
ENERGY AND THE FUTURE
- 1. To develop awareness of energy systems in their bodies, home and city.
- 2. To familiarize students with the forms of energy that are available, their limitations, and trade-offs that are necessary with each form.
- 3. To teach students some simple energy concepts in physics and units of measurements in energy.
- 4. To develop an understanding that what happened before in the use of energy affects us now, and our choices now will affect us and our children in the future.
- 5. To develop an awareness of America’s position and image in the worldwide energy crisis.
- 6. To sensitize students to the energy needs of the third, fourth and fifth world nations.
The metabolism of a cell is divided into catabolism and anabolism. Catabolism is the process by which large food molecules are broken down to smaller ones and liberate energy. This energy is necessary for all cellular activity. Some of the energy is in the form of heat, and some is used to maintain the mechanical work of the cell, and to activate small molecules are united to form larger ones and in doing so, consume energy. Anabolism utilizes energy to or synthesize cellular products for growth, repair and reproduction.1
1. Carbohydrates, in simple (hexose) sugar form.
2. Proteins, in the form of simple amino acids.
3. Fats, in the form of glycerol and fatty acids.
When these units are oxidized directly as in the case of carbohydrate sugars or fats, or indirectly as in the case of proteins that first must be converted to carbohydrates and fats, they produce energy.
Their yield varies:
|1 gram of carbohydrate||4.1 calories|
|1 gram of fat||9.3 calories||1 gram of protein||4.1 calories2|
Physics defines energy as the ability to do work. Work, in turn, is defined as force X distance. When we lift our arm against the force of gravity we do work whether it is lift a bundle or to wave at a friend or to gyrate to music. If a body is sustaining itself as an energy system it maintains cells, provides new materials for growth (anabolism), loses energy as heat through the skin principally, and according to the activity uses additional calories.
|Type of Work||Additional Calories/Hours of Work|
|Very Hard||200 Calories or more4|
When we discuss diet, especially with the young, we should distinguish between hunger and appetite. Hunger is the complex condition that is accompanied by vigorous contractions of the empty stomach, a feeling of emptiness in the abdomen, and a general discomfort that cannot be localized. Appetite is the craving for a certain food or drink which can be satisfied quite easily.5
|Roots and tubers||7%|
|Fruits and vegetables||10%|
|Fats and Oils||9%|
|Livestock and fish||11%6|
|Age||Grams/kg Body Weight (Kg = 2.2 pounds)|
|3-5 Years||3.0 grams|
|5-15 Years||2.5 grams|
|15-17 Years||1.5 grams|
|Above 21 Years||1.0 grams 7|
So we see that diet and accompanying energy production in the body is a worldwide concern for this and future generations. Many factors encourage us to re-examine our diets.
Many scientists believe that we could work out an adequate diet for the entire world population if the major part of the diet were cereals balanced by legumes. The legumes would provide the necessary protein.
- 1. Expense (especially in an inflationary period).
- 2. The need to reduce ecological stress caused by increased food production.
- 3. Health reasons
- a. Relationship between fattier meats and coronary heart disease. (This) encourages the use of less beef and pork and more poultry.
- 4. Economic reasoning that some foods use up many more resources to produce and therefore cost more.10
This type of diet does not have appetite appeal or cultural acceptance in many areas of the world. In addition, many nations do not even have the means to afford this dietary balance because of their extreme poverty. Ideal distribution of the nutrients would be extremely difficult. If the rate of population growth continues to increase, the output of these nutrients would have to keep doubling. The natural resources necessary to promote that output would lead to environmental degradation.
As man began to relocate he found that by living together he could accomplish many endeavors better. Aggregates developed, clans, tribes, small villages, towns, and finally cities emerged. The city is a recent entity in the time line of man. The Greek city-states flourished only 3,000 years ago. Now we study the social phenomenon of the city in many ways, including environmentally.
|Add fuel (wood) for cooking, heat 1||2,000|
|Add coal, steam engines (1860)||70,000|
|U.S. in 1975 using electricity,||235,000|
|appliances, private cars and|
*One B.T.U. = .252Kcal
The average wage level in the city may allow less funds for insulating the city households, less money for the newer cars that represent conservation of fuel, but many families have used their own labor, and subsidies for improving the fuel tradeoffs in their homes, and have increased their use of mass transit, happily available for city people, and many are walking more and driving less.
The American megalopolis of superhighways, hermetically sealed buildings and shopping malls enclosed in artificial climates seems almost designed to squander energy in the unconscious belief that it can never run out.This article in Time, April, 1977, forecast closed factories, and cold, dark homes unless our government mastered the problem. It continued:
But it can. The oil and gas that make up about three-quarters of America’s fuel were created in finite supply millions of years ago. At the rate they are being burned, they will begin playing out sometime around the year 2000 give or take a decade or so.
Americans will be asked, possibly even ordered to conserve energy by insulating their homes and factories. They will have to pay gradually increasing fuel bills, pay higher-and-higher gasoline taxes, drive smaller cars, perhaps breathe air polluted by coal fumes, take first steps toward using solar energy to heat at least their water and learn to cope with the perils of nuclear power.19
- 1. Conservation—This has been attempted. For example, insulation of homes encouraged by tax credits and money-saving incentives has saved measureably and more can be done.
- 2. Coal Usage—James Schlesinger, the energy chief at that time was quoted as saying that we had enough coal available for 400 years. Although this may be true problems in converting equipment from oil and gas fuels have deferred its use. Also, coal creates undesirable pollution as a side effect of its use.
- 3. Auto Efficiency—Cars were ordered to achieve an average of 20 miles per gallon by 1980. This goal has effectively been reached by smaller, lighter, fuel-efficient cars. A goal of 27.5 miles per gallon is set for 1985.
- 4. Natural Gas—The chief problem was its limited availability and the inequity in prices between the gas producing states and other consuming states. Price decontrol is now being effected in this area.
The people in this country are very weight conscious, for good reason, since the lifestyle and abundance of calories available in all forms are conducive to overweight. Fortunes have been made in fad diets as well as in sensible weight reduction. The Scarsdale, high protein lecithin, water, and no-carbohydrate diets may be suspect to some, but people flock to try them. Diet clinics and behavior modification groups flourish. The youthful figure is the universal goal. Most students are aware of this and are culturally influenced to strive for sliminess, but their home backgrounds and readily available fast foods tip the scale against them. Many of the young have adopted extreme means to curb weight gain. At the same time, the environmental impact of highly processed, expensively packaged and widely distributed foods plus the economic pressure to overproduce is difficult to measure. However, the result is that the United States has a population ten to twenty percent overweight on the average in a world where food is the number one energy shortage. This leads to the first scenario, YOU AND ENERGY.
After discussing the human body as an energy system, a model for a system should be established with the divisions of Input, Work, Output (both desirable and undesirable). This model will be used in the second section of the unit ENERGY AND THE CITY to analyze the city as a system and other systems used in the city, home and industry.
A review of the history of energy usage and recent attempts to control its use will be examined with the emphasis on the particular problems of non-renewable sources. The newspapers will be monitored for new federal, state and city measures in energy control. At the end of the unit each student will be asked to write a position paper of one page or more on what he would like to see in his energy future. ENERGY AND THE FUTURE.
The filmstrip series, The World of Energy, from the National Geographic Educational Services will be used as a vehicle for continuity throughout the unit. No more than one strip will be used each week in conjunction with activities relating to the strips.
1. To understand the common features of animal cells.
2. To recognize the functions of life common to all cells.
3. To relate these functions to a model of an energy system.
When you feel tired or haven’t had food to supply your body’s needs you say you feel like you don’t have any energy. What do you do to get rid of this feeling? You have to rest and replenish the energy to 30 to 100 trillion cells. 30,000,000,000,000 cells. These cells are complete little systems that work together to make your body go. We will now learn the parts of a cell and their functions (jobs).
The words on the board are some parts of a cell. We will use some of them more than once. Place list on board.
A. Three major parts of all animal cells
E.R. (Endoplasmic Reticulum)
Golgi Body (Apparatus)
Ribosomes. Free and on E.R.
Pinocytosis (methods of taking)
Phagocytosis (in materials)
(figure available in print form)
Label: Organelles of the Cell:
(figure available in print form)
- 1. Can this cell exists without anything coming in? Why or why not?
- 2. What would happen if nothing left the cell? If the waste products remained, what would they do to the cell? Is this a form of pollution?
- 3. What does the cell need to survive? Reproduce? To grow?
- 4. Could this cell exist without other cells? Why or why not?
- 5. What do the mitochondria supply that the cell needs to do its work?
- 6. How can cells get rid of waste materials?
- 7. How can the body get rid of waste materials?
- 8. How can the world get rid of waste materials?
|Input:||solid _______||Fuel. Potential energy in chemical form.|
|gas _______||Unites to “burn” fuel.|
|liquid _______||Chemical activity only occurs between materials in solution.|
|Cell Activity:||_______||Breaking down of complex substances.|
|_______||Building up of new substances.|
|_______||Combination of the two.|
|_______||Necessary to do work.|
|Output:||_______ Materials produced to be used in other parts of the body.|
|_______ Solid, liquid and gaseous materials that must be disposed of by the body eventually.|
- 1. To learn to plan a balanced diet for a day appropriate to different individuals.
- 2. To promote awareness of calorie values of different types of food.
- 3. To recognize foods that provide different nutrients: carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and water.
- 4. To recognize concept that weight should be lost sensibly.
Displays of various figure types.
- 1. Students are divided into groups of three.
- 2. Each group is given a card with a picture of a different type of individual. (Different age, weight, body type, etc.)
- 3. Each group is to plan a diet for a day from the charts on pages 17, 18, 19 in Liberty, The Support of Life.
- 1. Find the number of calories necessary for your individual for a day.
- 2. Divide the number into number for each meal.
- 3. Each member of the group should plan one meal.
- 4. Groups should hand in their one-day menu at end of class.
Teacher should mention that in seeking for a good figure people may deprive their bodies of necessary input for their energy systems and may endanger their physical and emotional health. Three exceptional examples are the following disorders:
- 1. Anorexia Nervosa—A severe problem with deep psychological roots where the patient never thinks she is thin enough, and eventually cannot force herself to eat. It is very difficult to treat.
- 2. Bulimarexia—A disorder often found in strong-willed, ambitious women and girls who eat large amounts of food and vomit it. (From bulimia—craving for large amounts of food.
- 3. Ketosis—Ketones released into blood stream sometimes causing light-headedness and weakness.
1. To learn the steps of the scientific method in a real situation.
2. To develop powers of observation.
- 3. To learn the difference between an hypothesis and theory and law.
- 4. To attempt to construct an experiment to test a possible explanation, eliminating all but one variable.
Teacher brings in glass enclosed anemometer which has paddles dark on one side and reflective on the other. It should be placed in a sunny spot. She asks the students for any possible explanation of why the paddles move since nothing appears to touch them through the glass. The teacher calls the possible answer a hypothesis. Then she follows this method of development.
- 1. State the hypothesis.
- 2. Ask student to devise an experiment to test the hypothesis.
- 3. List all necessary materials.
- 4. List steps of procedure.
- 5. Try the experiment, writing down all observations.
- 6. Repeat the experiment, noting any variations.
- 7. Formulate a theory.
- 8. Teacher explains the universality of this way of dealing with a question scientifically. Differentiation between hypothesis, theory, and law can be introduced.
Ask the students to do a of the experiment so that another student can duplicate it exactly, using the following headings:
3. Steps of procedure
- 1. To establish a visual image of potential and kinetic energy to which students can refer. 2. To emphasize that energy changes forms but it is not lost. 3. To learn to recognize specific forms of energy, such as: light, sound, heat, electrical, chemical, etc.
Teacher Demonstration and Motivation:
- 1. The teacher places a book on a high cupboard and asks, “How much energy does this book have?” The answers may be derisive but it allows the teacher to present an easily remembered visualization of potential energy (stored energy or energy of position). The teacher knocks the book down. It hits the floor with a loud bang (explosion of sound). As the book falls the energy of position is changed to kinetic energy (energy of motion), and that energy is greatest as it hits the floor where the energy is lost in an inelastic collision in the form of heat and sound. With a little discussion the students perceive that when energy is lost it usually is really converted to heat (a form of energy).
- 2. Set up various electrical appliances: iron, radio, television, blender, or beater. Should be examined to ascertain what electrical energy produces. Motors should be checked to see if any heat is also produced. Is the appliance 100Z efficient? What work does the appliance perform for man? How did man do it before the appliance was invented?
- 3. A group of students should be assigned to research the fuels used for generation of electricity in the State Energy Advisory Board’s Report.
- 4. Teacher Demonstration of Chemical Energy. Teacher can show any chemical reaction that exhibits release of energy, e.g. 1/2cm of magnesium ribbon into test tube containing 5cm of diluted hydrochloric acid. KEEP FAR ENOUGH AWAY FROM STUDENTS FOR SAFETY AND CLOSE ENOUGH FOR VISIBILITY.
What Form of Energy?
Teacher shows or mentions:
What About Sunlight?
- a. Stretched elastic band
- b. Rock dropped into water
- c. Candy bar
- d. Raised arm
- e. Laser beam in science fiction movie
- f. Fireworks
g. Waterfall At top? At bottom?
What About Nuclear Energy?
1. To bring the city’s energy picture into the classroom.
2. To teach students to analyze what they see on film.
3. To encourage students to speak their minds about their own environment.
Suppose you were going to make a simple filmstrip on slide show and cassette. First, we’ll watch one that is professionally produced, Second, for each slide you will write down a comment about that slide,
- 1. After watching the strip ask for the students’ comments.
- 2. Ask how they could present the city energy picture by slides photographed around their city.
- 3. Ask which sites could they suggest to photograph.
Pictures should be taken by class “photographer” or teacher (if necessary). Show slides and develop verbal comments of students into paragraphs to accompany slides and make a cassette to be played with the slides by having different students read the paragraphs.
In association with the graphs an illustration of the dilemma of the imbalance in the world food supply can be utilized. The teacher makes up four different color coupons, each color in a number equal to her number of students. One color represents arable land, one represents food production technology, one represents low population and one represents wealth. She places varying amounts of coupons in sandwich bags (one for each student). Some bags should have only one coupon, several should have three. and at least one should have twenty or more. She then places a box of cookies on the front table and says it represents the entire food supply in the world, and in order to receive any a student must present four coupons of one or more colors. Students should be asked to think of possible solutions to the problem. EAT THE COOKIES AFTERWARDS.
(figure available in print form)
This activity is a variation of Source: Energy and Earth, The Jefferson County Schools. Jefferson County, Colorado, Printed in Something Special for Teachers. Seed, Tenneco, Inc. Public Affairs Department, Houston, Texas, 1980.
|Of the following, rate five A. Absolutely necessary||A=4|
|C. I hate to give it up, but I can||C=2|
|D. Easy to give up.||D=1|
1. Trip to New York _______ 2. Bike riding _______ 3. Blowdryer _______ 4. Chewing Gum _______ 5. Watching T.V. _______ 6. Dishwasher _______ 7. Deodorants _______ 8. Streetlights _______ 9. Soda _______ 10. Fruit _______ 11. Hot Water _______ 12. Flush Toilets _______ 13. Makeup _______ 14. Walking _______ 15. Roller skating _______ 16. Air Conditioning _______ 17. City parks _______ 18. Ironed clothes _______ 19. Plastic Containers _______ 20. Rock Concerts _______
- 1. Each student should pick an activity.
- 2. Construct a visual representation of each for number of A’s, B’s, C’s and D’s assigned by class.
- 3. As a group, construct a bar graph for class average value for 1-20.
|Item||Distance from Origin||Processing||Packaging||Renewability||#|
Are any of these foods “junk” foods?
Are any of these stimulants?
Are any of these foods “prestige” foods?
Which ones demand the highest price in energy?
FINISH THE CLASS BY EATING THE FRUIT!
- 1. Is your furnace in your house? ____
- in another building? ____
- 2. What kind of fuel do you use?
- oil ____
- gas ____
- electric heat ____
- other ____ What kind? _______
- 3. What kind of stove do you have? oil ____
- gas ____
- electric ____
- wood ____
- 4. Is your building well insulated? Yes ____ No ____
- Do you have storm windows? Yes ____ No ____
- 5. How old is your furnace? 1-5 ____ years
- 6-10 ____ years
- 10-15 ____ years
- 15-20 ____ years
- 20+ ____ years
- 6. About how many square feet of house area do you heat? ____If you don’t know, answer next two questions. How many rooms? ____ Large rooms? Yes ____ No ____
- 7. If you rent, is your heat included in the rent? Yes ____ No ____
- 8. Have you had a rent increase this year? Yes ____ No ____
- 9. If you buy your own fuel, how much has it increased in price? For instance, in 1980-81 my oil went from $1.04 a gallon to $1.38 a gallon, down to $1.22 in June.
September _______ March _______ June _______
- 10. Do you drive a car? _______
- 11. Do you have a refrigerator? _______ Toaster? _______ TV _______
- Hair dryer? _______ Curling Iron? _______ Washer? _______
- Dryer? _______ Other? _______
- 12. Where do you think you lose the most heat? DOORS? ____ WINDOWS? ____ BADLY BUILT HOUSE? ____ ROOF? ____ OTHER? ____
- 13. Who controls the heat in your house? One parent? ____ All adults? ____ Everybody in the house changes the thermostat?
2. Cartoons on energy.
3. Articles in paper, particularly on federal program on energy.
2. No oil or gas was available for a week?
3. You were running a temperature?
Connecticut Energy Adivsory Board, Connecticut Energy Outlook, 1979. Hartford: State of Connecticut, 1979. An overview of the energy picture in Connecticut with tables and energy statistics. Impact on different economic levels is described.
Ferrand, Trisha, et al., “New Jersey County Plans for Integrated Waste Management,” Biocycle, 40-42 (Jan.-Feb., 1981.) Resource to illustrate new approaches to solving waste product disposal.
Forrester, Jay W., World Dynamics, Cambridge, Massachusetts: WrightAllen Press, Inc., 1971. Highly technical graphical illustrations emphasize complexities of energy relationships.
Fowler, John M., Project Director, Energy in the Global Marketplace, Washington: National Science Teachers’ Association, 1978. Good source for activities.
Miller, G. Tyler, Jr., Living in the Environment, Sec. Ed., Belmont, California: Wadsworth Publishing Co., 1979. Excellent tables, well documented, environmentally oriented overview of energy picture.
___________________”More Woes on the Oil Front”, Time, Pp. 70-71, (October 29, 1979). Update in history of energy crisis.
Morrison, Thomas F., et al., Human Physiology, Holt Rinehart and Winston, Inc., New York: 1976. Accepted secondary source for physiology, chapters on cells and foods are useful.
Nash, Hugh, (ed.), Progress As If Survival Mattered, San Francisco: Friends of the Earth, 1977. Good cartoons, quotes from famous personages.
___. Something Special for Teachers, Houston: Schoolhouse Energy Teaching Program, Tenneco, Inc., 1981. Some good lesson plans developed from energy company and teacher resources.
___. ”Superbrain’s Superproblem,” Time, Pp. 58-67, (April 4, 1977). Historically significant article in terms of U.S. energy policy, development and politics’ role in the energy crisis.
Turk, Jonathan, Introduction to Environmental Studies, Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders, 19&0. Good environmental resource to serve as common reference for teacher and high reading level students.
Tuve, George L., Energy, Environment, Populations and Food, New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1976. 40 page appendix of excellent statistical tables on resources and their use for analysis and comparisons.
Liberty, Gene, The Support of Life, Amsco School Publications, Inc., New York: 1975. Chapters 1-4 are high interest, low reading level and activity oriented materials.
Mongillo, John F., et al., Reading About Science, Volumes A-F, New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1981. These simple texts are prepared for graduated lower reading levels and include many simple activities and exercises.
Turk, Jonathan, Introduction to Environmental Studies, Philadelphia: W. R. Saunders, 1980. Good environmental book for high reading level student research.
Contents of 1981 Volume V | Directory of Volumes | Index | Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute