In this 5 week unit, students will study which energy source will be most effective to the economy and the environment in the future. They will compare and contrast renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy. Through various activities and experiments students will explore different types of energy sources, specifically solar energy. Students will be introduced to a simple food chain by putting an example on the board. Example: sun-grass-sheep; explain that the sun provides energy for the grass to grow and the grass provides energy (food) for the sheep.
We will then discuss the following points: The sun gives off energy that is used by the plants. However, the plants do not use all of the energy the sun produces. Animals eat plants to get energy. However, not all of the energy that was captured by the plant is still in the plant since it had to use some for its own growth and reproduction. With each transfer of energy, some is "lost" to the process of staying alive. Students will also learn to distinguish between potential and kinetic energy and identify and describe different forms of energy.
This will be done in terms of what we can do in our everyday life to use an energy source that will be stainable and renewable. Helping students make educated choices is an essential part of their education and well-being. Through this study, students will gain the ability to choose the most efficient and effective energy sources, from choices that are available to them in their everyday lives, which will allow students to become educated consumers.