This board game, designed for middle school students, introduces the concepts of energy use in our lives and the real impact that personal choices can have on our energy consumption, energy bills, and fuel supply.

In this activity, students take a Home Energy Quiz to identify improvements that could make their homes more energy-efficient.

This short, animated video describes what is meant by climate, its characteristics, and the range of impacts due to climate change. The difference between mitigation and adaptation is also discussed.

Students investigate how much greenhouse gas (carbon dioxide and methane) their family releases into the atmosphere each year and relate it to climate change. To address this, students use the Environmental Protection Agency Personal Emissions Calculator to estimate their family's greenhouse gas emissions and to think about how their family could reduce those emissions.

Students investigate passive solar building design with a focus on heating. Insulation, window placement, thermal mass, surface colors, and site orientation are addressed in the background materials and design preparation. Students test their projects for thermal gains and losses during a simulated day and night then compare designs with other teams for suggestions for improvements.

In this activity, students calculate the cost of the energy used to operate a common three-bulb light fixture, and compare the costs and amount of CO2 produced for similar incandescent and compact fluorescent light bulbs.

In this classroom activity, students analyze regional energy usage data and their own energy bills to gain an understanding of individual consumption, regional uses, costs, and sources of energy.

This is a laboratory activity in which students will compare the amount of carbon dioxide in four different sources of gas and determine the carbon dioxide contribution from automobiles. They test ambient air, human exhalation, automobile exhaust, and nearly pure carbon dioxide from a vinegar/baking soda mixture.

This multi-week project begins with a measurement of baseline consumptive behavior followed by three weeks of working to reduce the use of water, energy, high-impact foods, and other materials. The assignment uses an Excel spreadsheet that calculates direct energy and water use as well as indirect CO2 and water use associated with food consumption. After completing the project, students understand that they do indeed play a role in the big picture. They also learn that making small changes to their lifestyles is not difficult and they can easily reduce their personal impact on the environment.

This video is one of a series produced by the Switch Energy project. It reviews the pros and cons of natural gas as a source of energy.

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