Solar Circuit

Variables Affecting Solar Power

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
6
Description:
Students will plan and condict an investigation into solar photovoltaic technologies to determine what variables affect the output of panels. They will calculate and compare their exploration of solar panels to their previous investigation of wind turbines in...
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Learning Goal(s):
• Students will be able to identify and explain at least three variables that effect the efficiency of photovoltaic cells • Students will conduct a scientific investigation to determine which photovoltaic cell configuration will generate the most power.
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours
US DOE WInd Turbines

Variables Affecting Wind Turbine Power

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
5
Description:
Now that students are familiar with how mechanical electricity generation works, they will build a wind turbine powered by a box fan. Different teams will test different turbine variables to see how the amount of electrical power is affected. After each team...
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More Details Less Details
Learning Goal(s):
• Students will be able to identify and explain at least three variables that affect the efficiency of wind turbines • Students will conduct a scientific investigation to determine which wind turbine configuration will generate the most power
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Estimated Activity Length:
4 hours
Magnetic Field Filings

Three Ways to Generate Electricity

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
4
Description:
This lesson gives students hands-on experiences with the attraction and repulsion of magnets including experiments with how the strength of attraction and repulsion varies with distance. Students see how magnets are used in motors but also in electric...
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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to: • Detect the relative strength of magnetic fields at different distances from a magnet • Explain the energy transformations occurring in each part of a circuit • Identify three different methods for generating electricity
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Estimated Activity Length:
3 hours
Kill-A-Watt_Meter

How much energy do YOU use?

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
3
Description:
Students will learn the difference between energy and power. They will then use this new understanding to compare the energy and power difference of light bulbs (incandescent, halogen, fluorescent, and LED) using a tool called a “Kill-A-Watt” meter. Students...
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Learning Goal(s):
Students will be able to: • Explain the difference between power and energy • Proficiently use a “Kill-A-Watt” meter to determine the power and total energy usage of everyday devices • Compare the total energy used by common household devices • Brainstorm different ways we can conserve electrical energy
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Estimated Activity Length:
0 sec
Simple Circuit

Introduction to Circuits

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
2
Description:
This lesson begins with students having hands-on experiences creating electrical circuits using a battery, wires, and a light bulb. Students will learn that electricity is the flow of electrons, and how electricity moves within a circuit.
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Learning Goal(s):
By the end of these two lessons students should be able to: 1. Create a simple circuit on their own when given the appropriate materials. 2. Diagram the flow of electrons within a circuit. 3. Differentiate between series and parallel circuits.
Pedagogy & Practice:
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Estimated Activity Length:
0 sec
Energy Transformations

Introduction to Energy

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
1
Description:
This lesson will introduce students to each of the different types of energy using PowerPoint slides, partner activities, and hands-on experiences with different kinds of energy including: batteries (chemical), electrical circuits (electrical), motors (motion...
Energy Content:
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More Details Less Details
Learning Goal(s):
• Students will be able to name and describe at least 5 kinds of energy • Students will be able to identify and explain simple energy transformations
Author:
Craig Marais
Relevant NGSS PE:
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours