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Alternative Energy Resources Unit On Wind Energy

This unit is designed to be a supplement to the Fifth Grade units on Solar Energy and Variables as stipulated in the School District of Philadelphia curriculum. The topics of Non-Renewable and Renewable Energy Resources will be covered, as well as fundamental energy related Physics formulas. A five-lesson unit will focus on the alternative energy resource of Wind Energy and will answer the question, How do we get the wind to do work? Background information on energy resources and basic physics terminology will be provided. The students will work with inexpensive hands – on materials (Styrofoam balls, wooden dowels, cardboard containers oak tag, cups, tongue depressors, small box fans, scissors, glue, tape and pennies or washers) in small groups (4-6) for five 45-minute lessons. Students will receive background information, materials, and a windmill plan design. The students will plan, design, and test windmill systems and blades, which will illustrate how wind energy can do work. Students will use technology to do research on the topic of the advantages and disadvantages of wind energy. Elements from the EiE (Engineering is Elementary) design process and WindWise Education will help form a framework for the hands-on lessons. Assessments will be made on a variety of levels: informal teacher observation, student verbal reports, daily “Do Now” written reports, and a student survey.

  • Lesson 1 Students will identify renewable and non-renewable sources of energy, and basic Physics terms
  • Lesson 2 How does a windmill work? Students receive background information on windmills though books and pictures and plan their windmill system
  • Lesson 3 Which are the best blades? Students build and test windmills and blades, test for variables
  • Lesson 4 Wind Power - Students make a wind tunnel to test wind velocity formula
  • Lesson 5 Wind Energy - Advantages and Disadvantaged Students do Internet research present their findings, complete student survey
John DiFiore
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