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

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
Solar Rooftop

Solar Site Assessment

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Students will do an actual site assessment to determine the available solar resource for a chosen location.

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to use a Solar Pathfinder to determine the amount of solar resource lost to shading from nearby trees, buildings, etc. Students will be able to calculate the number of kWh of electricity that can be produced in a specific location and in a specific sized area. Students will be able to calculate the amount of carbon emissions that can be offset due to installing photovoltaic panels of various sizes. Students will be able to calculate the size array needed to offset all electricity use for the high school.
Author:
Clayton Hudiburg
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
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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2-Volt, 500mA Solar Modules

How Do Solar Panels Work?

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

Students will learn the basics of how a solar cell generates electricity and observe the effects on a small electrical load attached to a solar module under a variety of conditions. They will build upon knowledge gained in previous lessons dealing with...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to describe, in basic terms, the way that electricity is generated from a solar cell. Students will be able to determine that energy from the sun is being converted directly into electricity. Students will understand that this electrical energy that is produced in this energy transfer is able to perform the work required within a small load.
Pedagogy & Practice:
Author:
Carol Patrick
Relevant NGSS PE:
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
Basic Stamp Microprocessor

Dual Axis Light Tracking

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Students will take the previous lesson and apply them in creating a light tracker with two degrees of freedom. The axis of rotation will be about the horizontal and vertical. Teams will have everything they need to make this build work. They have already...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will create a solar tracker with two degrees of freedom.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Pat Blount
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
Solar Charger Diagram

Designing a Solar Charger

Grades:
10-12
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

In this lesson, students will further explore the potential and challenges related to using photovoltaics to supplement the power needed to charge batteries in BEVs. Students will be provided with a 12 V lead-acid battery and several 3 V, 1.5 A solar...

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Learning Goal(s):
1. Students will explore the role of series and parallel wiring as they pertain to voltage and amperage. 2. Students will explore the processes involved with charging batteries and relate these processes to voltage and amperage. 3. Students will test photovoltaic modules to identify voltage and amperage outputs. 4. Students will design a system of wiring 3 V, 1.5 A modules together as a means to charge a 12 V lead-acid battery 5. Students will predict and test the effectiveness of their designed solar charger.
Author:
Clayton Hudiburg
Estimated Activity Length:
4 hours
Solar Circuit

A Simple Circuit

Grades:
2-5
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

Students make a hypothesis about how a set of materials should be connected in order to make a motor spin. Through guided trial and error students are led to the idea of a circuit as the proper way to connect the materials in order to make the fan turn....

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to draw a simple circuit, label its parts, and show the direction/path that current is flowing.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Mike Hellis
Estimated Activity Length:
50 min
Car Charger Schematic

Exploring Buck and Boost Converters

Grades:
7-12
Unit:
Lesson Number:
4
Description:

This lab uses a variety of voltage conversion devices to output 5 Volts, the requirements for a USB charger such as for a cell phone. Students will take data on these devices and calculate, graph and compare efficiencies of different devices. Devices used...

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Learning Goal(s):
1. Students will use multimeters to measure voltage and current in circuits. 2. Students will use collected data and be able to make power calculations from this data. 3. Students will also be able to calculate efficiency from their power calculations. 4. Students will be able to compare efficiencies in order to identify the circuit that is most efficient. 5. Students will be able to make circuits from a diagram and vice versa.
Pedagogy & Practice:
Author:
Brett McFarland
Relevant NGSS PE:
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
3 hours