Resource Library

EDUCATOR GUIDE
EDUCATOR GUIDE

Energy Potential

Energy Potential

When scientists use the term energy, there are also a variety of definitions, but the commonly taught definition in school science is the capacity to do work. What does this definition mean, and how does it help us think about our human energy systems? This teacher guide is designed to familiarize teachers with both the technical terminology about energy, and the energy efficiency and conservation issues that have become so important in recent years.

Grades

3 - 8

Subjects

Earth Science, Physics

When scientists use the term energy, there are a variety of definitions, but the commonly taught definition in school science is the capacity to do work. What does this definition mean, and how does it help us think about our human energy systems? This teacher guide is designed to familiarize teachers with both the technical terminology about energy, and the energy efficiency and conservation issues that have become so important in recent years. There are many ideas currently being discussed about sources of alternative energy and their relationship to energy efficiency as well as the environment. Being armed with a greater understanding of energy allows us to make wiser choices in our personal lives, as well as in our communities.

This guide was developed to support teachers in teaching topics with real-world context, and provide them with the background to feel competent and comfortable when teaching about energy. It provides a solid introduction to energy in an accessible and reader-friendly manner. In addition to general information about energy, the guide includes numerous education features, such as teaching tips and student thinking, that help to connect the content to classroom practice.

Scroll through our resources above and click to download the book or individual chapters. Having trouble downloading? Use the links below.

Energy Potential: Full Teacher Guide
Chapter 1: Energy Comes in Many Forms
Chapter 2: Energy in Human Systems
Chapter 3: Energy to Power Our World
Chapter 4: Environmental Impacts of Energy
Chapter 5: Energy in Our Human Communities
Chapter 6: Solutions for Our Energy Future

Media Credits

The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited.

Writers
Lindsey Mohan, Ph.D.
Ivan Salinas, B.S. Chemistry
Marcia S. Matz, M.A. Design
Jose Marcos-Iga, Ph.D. Natural Resources
Nicole D. LaDue, M.A.T. Earth Science Education
Tania T. Hinojosa, M.Ed. Educational Technology
Rachel J. Fisher, M.S. Biology
Designer
Cindy Olson
Editors
Kristen Dell, National Geographic Society
Lindsey Mohan, Ph.D.
Chelsea Zillmer
Educator Reviewers
Catie Boarts, Heal the Bay
Rachel J. Fisher
Meghan E. Marrero, New York State Marine Education Association (NYSMEA)
Marcia S. Matz
other
Last Updated

May 20, 2022

For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection@natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. She or he will best know the preferred format. When you reach out to him or her, you will need the page title, URL, and the date you accessed the resource.

Media

If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media.

Text

Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service.

Interactives

Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. You cannot download interactives.

Related Resources