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