Thermal Energy Teacher Resources

Find Thermal Energy educational ideas and activities

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Discuss the difference between conduction, convection and radiation of thermal energy, and complete activities with your class by investigating the difference between temperature, thermal energy and the heat capacity of different materials.
Young scholars explore the variety of ways to use solar energy. They investigate the thermal energy storage capacities of different test materials to determine which to use in passive solar building design. They explain how passive solar heating works, describe materials that are appropriate for use in passive solar heating and see how engineers design passive solar heating systems for buildings.
Differentiate between temperature and thermal energy. Your class will build a thermometer using simple materials and develop their own scale for measuring temperature. Discuss with your class and consider why engineers need to understand the properties of thermal energy.
Students measure the heat absorbed by different materials and learn why engineers need to know how different materials story thermal energy when designing buildings. In this heat capacity lesson plan, students use a thermometer to measure the heat of materials.
Students study thermal energy and energy transfer to sea ice processes. In this energy transfer lesson, students make their own ice cream and discuss energy transfer and thermal energy. Students view a radiation overhead and its role in sea ice growth. Students watch a demonstration using water, saltwater, and ice cubes. Students complete a worksheet about melting the ice.
Identify how solar energy generates thermal energy by constructing solar cookers with your students. They will evaluate the factors that affect efficiency and the lesson can be adapted to capture data in a variety of ways.
Conduct an experiment on the absorption of thermal energy. Discuss simple water heating systems and how characteristics of the parts can be changed. Your pupils work in groups and change one variable to observe the effect it has on how water absorbs thermal energy.
Fifth graders study thermal energy and conduction. In this thermal energy lesson, 5th graders participate in a series of investigations to study thermal energy transfer and conduction. Students complete a data worksheet for the experiments and draw a diagram for each example from the investigation. Students write a journal entry about conduction.
Fifth graders investigate how thermal energy, light, sound, and magnetic forces are produced in a circuit. In this energy lesson, 5th graders will construct their own complete circuit game board in order to establish an understanding of what electricity produces. Students keep a record of their findings. 
Students investigate the thermal energy storage capacity of different test materials to determine which to use in their solar building design.  For this thermal energy lesson students design and build their own solar building. 
Sixth graders complete scientific experiments on thermal energy. In this scientific inquiry lesson, 6th graders complete experiments for a water heating device and change variables with the experiment to observe the effects on thermal energy. Students present their research through summaries and presentations.
Fifth graders investigate situations that show how kinetic and potential energy are exchanged. They determine how friction is a source of energy transfer from kinetic to thermal energy by experimenting with a car and track. They answer questions as the experiment progresses.
Fifth graders observe situations, conduct demonstrations and record data about the conduction of thermal energy between two objects. The demonstrations incorporate common household materials found in the kitchen.
Students work in small groups to explore temperature as a measure of the average heat or thermal energy of the particles in a substance. They examine geysers and geological hotspots and volcanic calderas associated with hot springs.
Learners define temperature and heat, distinguish between temperature and heat flow, calculate amount of heat energy released or absorbed in chemical process, and design procedure, through experimentation, to gather and evaluate data to achieve desired end.
In this thermal energy worksheet, students answer 6 questions about substances that have greater thermal energy, substances that take more thermal energy to raise their temperatures and the heat lost and gained by substances.
Examine how heat can be transferred between systems by reconstructing a diagram on energy flow and solving problems on heat flow and work done.
For this temperature worksheet, learners answer 8 questions about temperature and thermal energy. For example, "What term refers to an energy transfer that causes a change in temperature?"
Sixth graders discover heat is conducted in a variety of ways. In this physical science instructional activity, 6th graders investigate various conductors of heat, they explain their findings, and discover how energy is exchanged between objects through radiation. To conclude the instructional activity, students write predictions in their science notebooks to questions prompted by the teacher.
In this thermal energy worksheet, students review different ways heat can be transferred including convection and conduction. Students also review materials that are good conductors and insulators. This worksheet has 10 fill in the blank, 6 multiple choice, and 4 short answer questions.

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