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A Cool Connection: Using a short story or a one act play to  explore the environmental impact of electricity use
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CC BY-NC-SA
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This activity uses the reading, A Cool Connection (as a short story or one act play), to increase student understanding of how electrical power gets to their home and to introduce the connections between environmental problems and personal consumption. The storyline revolves around a group of high school students seeking relief from a heatwave while planning activities for their Ecology Club.

Topics introduced and assessed:
• The steps needed to move electrical power from where it is produced to where it is consumed
• The environmental costs of energy production
• The social costs of not meeting electrical demand

Subject:
English Language Arts
Environmental Literacy and Sustainability
Ecology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Author:
Joe Riederer
Date Added:
01/16/2020
Generators: Three Mile Island vs. Hoover Dam
Read the Fine Print
Educational Use
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Students are given a history of electricity and its development into the modern age lifeline upon which we so depend. The methods of power generation are introduced, and further discussion of each technology's pros and cons follows.

Subject:
Career and Technical Education
Technology and Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Brandon Jones
Techtronics Program,
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Powering the U.S.
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Educational Use
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This lesson provides students with an overview of the electric power industry in the United States. Students also become familiar with the environmental impacts associated with a variety of energy sources.

Subject:
Technology and Engineering
Environmental Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Frank Burkholder
Integrated Teaching and Learning Program,
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/18/2014
A River Ran Through It
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Educational Use
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Students learn how water is used to generate electricity. They investigate water's potential-to-kinetic energy transformation in hands-on activities about falling water and waterwheels. During the activities, they take measurements, calculate averages and graph results. Students also learn the history of the waterwheel and how engineers use water turbines in hydroelectric power plants today. They discover the advantages and disadvantages of hydroelectric power. In a literacy activity, students learn and write about an innovative new hydro-electrical power generation technology.

Subject:
Career and Technical Education
Technology and Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Denise W. Carlson
Integrated Teaching and Learning Program,
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Sabre Duren
Xochitl Zamora-Thompson
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Why Do We Build Dams?
Read the Fine Print
Educational Use
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Students are introduced to the concept of a dam and its potential benefits, which include water supply, electricity generation, flood control, recreation and irrigation. This lesson begins an ongoing classroom scenario in which student engineering teams working for the Splash Engineering firm design dams for a fictitious client, Thirsty County.

Subject:
Technology and Engineering
Hydrology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Denali Lander
Denise W. Carlson
Integrated Teaching and Learning Program,
Kristin Field
Lauren Cooper
Michael Bendewald
Sara Born
Timothy M. Dittrich
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Win that Bid! Selling Your Power Solution
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Educational Use
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A large part of engineering involves presenting products, concepts, and proposals to others in order to gain approval, funding, contracts, etc. The purpose of this activity is to fine-tune students' presentation skills while allowing them to independently investigate one type of power production to meet the needs of their region of choice. Students also learn problem solving skills in examining the advantages and disadvantages of particular methods of power generation.

Subject:
Business and Information Technology
Technology and Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Brandon Jones (Primary Content Creator), Pratt School of Engineering, Duke University
Techtronics Program,
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Work and Power: Waterwheel
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Educational Use
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Investigating a waterwheel illustrates to students the physical properties of energy. They learn that the concept of work, force acting over a distance, differs from power, which is defined as force acting over a distance over some period of time. Students create a model waterwheel and use it to calculate the amount of power produced and work done.

Subject:
Technology and Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Author:
Bailey Jones
Chris Yakacki
Denise W. Carlson
Integrated Teaching and Learning Program,
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Matt Lundberg
Date Added:
09/18/2014