F.R.E.E. (Fabulous Resources for Energy Education)
Helping Teachers Teach about Energy
Resources: Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency is a unique concept that can sometimes be confused with energy conservation. With energy efficiency, you are using less energy to do the same task. For example, your parent replaces an old washer or dryer with a new model that is energy efficient. The washer does the same task, but uses less energy doing so, saving money and reducing the amount of greenhouse gases released into the air. Being energy efficient not only benefits you, but also the world around you creating a better quality of life.
At F.R.E.E. (Fabulous Resources for Energy Education) it’s our goal to help educators and students become more energy efficient. To do so, we offer materials and activities available to test just how energy efficient you are. A popular item is the Pedal Power Energy Bike that demonstrates the concept of energy efficiency. Find more useful energy efficiency education materials, activities and lesson plans listed below.
F.R.E.E. Energy Efficiency Materials:
Pedal Power Energy Bike
Made possible by Alliant Energy, this energy bike is a hands on experience that allows the students to create their own energy to light up three different types of light bulbs. Through this experience, the bike demonstrates the amount of energy each one needs to be powered. The bike is easy to assemble, and is available to be loaned out to schools across the state of Iowa (F.R.E.E. Loan Form).
Mobile Power Tower
Provided by Alliant Energy, this unit can be loaned out to schools to show the use of alternative energy. It consists of two solar panels, one wind turbine, and a street light that is able to transmit data wirelessly online about wind speed, direction, solar energy, and more. Available for Iowa educators to borrow (F.R.E.E. Loan Form).
With this device, simply connect the appliance and it will display the amount of watts used to power the appliance. The lower the wattage the more efficient the appliance is. This is a great way to teach energy expenses, ways to conserve energy, and test out your own energy efficiency. Available for Iowa educators to borrow (F.R.E.E. Loan Form).
This device is able to measure heat coming from a surface. It’s a great use to use for checking areas where heat can be lost. Available for Iowa educators to borrow (F.R.E.E. Loan Form).
F.R.E.E. Energy Efficiency Activities and Lesson Plans:
To help make energy efficiency education fun and entertaining, we offer five different energy games that can be used to help teach the concepts. Simply click on the games you are interested in, print the pdfs, and use them for your own educational purposes!
- Energy Jeopardy (instructions) - questions & answers, points
- Weatherization Jeopardy (instructions) – questions & answers, pictures for cards
- Light Up Your Life (instructions) – $1 bills, $5 bills, CFL bulbs, collect salary, pay bill cards, Edison bulbs, simple electrical bills, special cards, start cards
- Green Life Game (instructions) – tips for printing, $50 bills, $100 bills, $500 bills, $1000 bills, careers, expenses, homes, vehicles, Green Life cards, loan certificates
- Green Scattegories (instructions) – category cards
- Energy Bike Guide – Assembly information and activities (NEED.org)
- Kill-a-watt meter – Description and uses
- Temperature Measuring Exercise – Temperature Gun
- Harry Spotter and the Quest for the Right Light - Short play about energy efficient lighting (page 10)
- How Much Energy Does this Use? - Simple activity for younger students
- Simple Home Energy Inventory - Form to find ways to save energy at home
- Measuring Phantom Loads – Lesson plan for middle school students (supporting video)
- Phantom Load Cost Calculator – Interactive
- Energy Efficiency Bulbs – Interactive
- Energy Efficiency FUNdamentals – PowerPoint
- UNI School Energy Challenge - Program to reduce school energy use
- Passive Solar Design– A series of activities developed for Queensland, Australia
- Designing for Queensland's Climate – A nice companion for Passive Solar Design, with background information