Grade Levels: K-3

These classroom activities are designed to complement the Energy Sources topic on BrainPOP Jr.

Solar Power
Have students research different devices, machines, or vehicles that use solar power. Tell children that the International Space Station runs on solar power! Students may be surprised to discover what can be powered by the Sun’s energy. Have individuals or partners pick one solar-powered item and prepare a presentation for the whole class. Students may want to create a poster or even make a model of their findings. How might a solar-powered calculator be better for the environment than one that uses disposable batteries or one that plugs into a wall socket?

Wind Power
Explain to students that the shape of windmill blades can help them turn faster and work more efficiently. Research a few wind turbines together and compare and contrast the blades. Then as a simple engineering project, challenge small groups to come up with different designs of pinwheels using paper, pushpins, and straws. Which shape turns the fastest? Why? Have groups test their pinwheels outside on a particularly windy day. They can count the number of rotations per minute to test their shapes. Encourage them to record their findings and then share their pinwheels and data with the class.


Filed as:  Energy, Energy Sources, K-3, Science