National Standards

Below is a selected list of subject area content standards that generally encompass the study of energy. More specific standards can be applied depending on the project and its curriculum.

Economics Standards

Scarcity

• Productive resources are limited. Therefore, people can not have all the goods and services they want; as a result, they must choose some things and give up others.

Markets – Price and Quantity Determination

• Markets exist when buyers and sellers interact. This interaction determines market prices and thereby allocates scarce goods and services.

Mathematics Standard

Data Analysis and Probability Standard

• Formulate questions that can be addressed with data and collect, organize, and display relevant data to answer them.
• Select and use appropriate statistical methods to analyze data.
• Develop and evaluate inferences and predictions that are based on data.
• Understand and apply basic concepts of probability.

Science Standards

Science as Inquiry
• Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
• Understanding about scientific inquiry
Science in Personal and Social Perspectives
• Natural resources
• Environmental quality
• Science and technology in local, national, and global challenges

Social Studies Standards

People, Places, and Environment
Science, Technology, and Society
Global Connections

Energy is essential and at times a controversial subject. At EPCOT Center’s Energy exhibit, these lyrics, energy makes the world go round, sum up the role it has in the daily lives of people everywhere. From a global perspective, there are many challenges with the interdependence on energy sources. Nonrenewable energy sources include gas, oil, goal, and uranium. Renewable energy sources include solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, hydro, and the ocean. The debates concerning nonrenewable vs. renewable energy will shape government policies that will affect future generations. It is important that students learn about energy sources and the impact they have in their own lives.

Alliant Energy Kids

Learn about the basics of electricity and natural gas, including safety and renewable energy sources. Have you ever wondered how wind becomes electricity? Can you spot the electric hazards you might see outside? Play these games to find the answers. Find projects you can make at home or in the classroom such as a solar oven, anemometer, or pinwheel. Students, who like to color, do puzzles and test their smarts, can print out a variety of fun activity sheets. Teachers and parents will find lessons on energy safety and conservation. This site is geared to elementary students.

Clark Energy Kids Korner

An abundance of information, complimented by wonderful illustrations, is presented to educate students about why we need energy, the various sources, the need to be efficient, and preparing for emergencies. Teachers will appreciate the glossary and worksheets. Elementary and middle school students will benefit from this informative site.

EERE: Kids Page

Saving energy is the main topic of this site designed by the U.S. Department of Energy. Discover ways to use energy wisely in your home. Play games like Energy Elf and Watts the Answer. Learn brief facts about renewable energy. Parents and teachers will find more than 160 lessons and activities related to energy. Elementary students are the target audience of this site.

EIA Energy Kids Page

Need fast facts about energy sources, how they were/are formed, and their environmental impact? Want to know energy history and famous people who contributed their expertise and ingenuity? Looking for lessons, science experiments, and energy news? Detailed diagrams are included to help students understand scientific concepts. In addition there is a section of games, crossword puzzles, energy slang, and scavenger hunt. This is a good starting place when studying energy sources.

Energy Quest

Virtually enter a student’s bedroom to discover interesting facts regarding energy. Move the mouse over different objects to discover information about saving energy, energy news, energy story, alternative fuels, and how energy works (learn how air conditioners, fires, thermometers, toasters, and transformers work). Continue moving the mouse and learn about science projects on energy, solve energy puzzles, play games, and view winners of the Energy Quest art contest. The Super Scientist gallery offers portraits of energy pioneers. Select any super scientist and find out about his life and contribution to the field of science and energy. Homework help offers information on different kinds of energy. This site offers a wealth of material concerning energy from the California Energy Commission.

Energy Star Kids

Be an energy star by discovering how to become more energy efficient. Learn what energy is, where it comes from, the different types of energy, the consequences of using energy, and saving energy. The photographs depicting the warming climate are powerful and suggest ways to make a difference. Click on items in a room and find out how to be a smart energy consumer. The word bank offers vocabulary definitions regarding energy. Factoids find the why’s, where’s, how’s, and who’s of energy. Learn how you can make a difference in conserving energy by exploring this compelling site.

FERC: Students' Corner

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is an independent government agency, officially organized as part of the Department of Energy. This site offers the opportunity of taking a virtual tour of its headquarters. Click the icons on the map of the United States to see where we get our energy. Become familiar with how energy is regulated and disputes settled. Select a career with the FERC and see if you meet the qualifications. Play a crossword puzzle, word find, maze, or take a quiz to test your knowledge of the FERC. The section for parents offers helpful hints on saving and using energy. Teachers will find a number of resources to use with students. Kids are provided with links to fun energy sites that are specifically geared for them.

NRC: Students' Corner

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission offers a Student’s Corner to explain nuclear energy and fission. It explains what nuclear energy is, how fission occurs, and the uses of nuclear material. After explaining nuclear energy the site goes on to discuss the two different types of nuclear reactors in the United States using diagrams and photographs. Radiation is explained through diagrams as well. Emergency planning and security photos illustrate the importance of protecting nuclear facilities. Decommissioning is explained and radioactive waste sites are illustrated. Teacher lessons plans are included as well as a glossary and periodic table of the elements from the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Chemistry Division. Rounding out the site is an atomic crossword puzzle and quiz to test your nuclear knowledge.

NREL: Learning About Renewable Energy

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has provided a Website on energy efficiency and various applications of renewable energy. Renewable energies include solar, wind, biomass, hydrogen, geothermal, ocean, and hydropower. This site includes information on each and how the energy is captured and used. Who uses renewal energy and what it means to the world are only a few of the topics explored. This site is a treasure trove of information and resources on the topic of renewable energy.

Touchstone Energy Kids Zone

This is the place to learn about electricity, energy savings, and electrical safety. The site includes games that teach about energy and energy efficiency. The energy savings tips are easy for children to understand and help their family be more energy efficient. Follow the diagram of how electrical power gets to a home. Read the five rules for energy safety. Play the “Lights Out” game to replace light bulbs with CFL bulbs and turn off lights, TVs and computers. Visit the farm and learn about sources of renewable energy. Play the memory match game, read a story about Josh and Sarah’s electric adventure with their grandpa, print energy and hot air balloon coloring pages, and learn about the Touchstone Energy hot air balloon. The teacher zone offers educational material through Web based lessons, Web activities, and printed materials. The lessons have been created to meet national learning standards for grades K-5.


Wind Power
U.S. Department of Energy


Nuclear Power
Argonne National Laboratory


Hydroelectric Power
Department of Energy


Fossil Fuel
Argonne National Laboratory


Solar Panels
National Science Foundation

Originally Published Jan/Feb 2009

Updated October 21, 2009
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