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Website: Wind Powering America

Wind Powering America, is a website of helpful wind energy resources from the U.S. Department of Energy, including maps, videos, webinars, and news, as and full page of lesson plans and activities for teachers.

On the same site, teachers can visit the Winds for School program, offering wind energy curricula, information on professional development, a list of schools that support wind turbines and educational programs, and advice on applying for a wind turbine system.

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Curriculum: Wind Lessons from AWEA

Curriculum for teaching about wind energy kindergarten – 12th grade. Teacher and student guides with background information and hands-on activities to explore motion, weather, the history of wind, and modern wind technology.

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Lesson: Weather Forecasting

Hurricane season is here, reminding us that accurate weather forecasts can be a matter of life and death in vulnerable coastal areas of the country. Even inland, severe thunderstorms play havoc with late-summer travel, and tornadoes threaten lives and property. In this lesson for grades 6 to 8, students begin by considering how weather forecasting plays an important part in their daily lives. They learn about the history of weather forecasting — from old weather proverbs to modern forecasting equipment — and how improvements in weather technology have saved lives by providing advance warning of natural disasters.

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Lesson: Harnessing Wind

This 50-minute lesson for grades 3-5 introduces the ways that engineers study and harness the wind. Students will learn about the different kinds of winds and how to measure wind direction; how air pressure creates winds, and how engineers build and test wind turbines to harness energy from wind. A separate activity, Bubble-ology, introduces students to aerodynamics by challenging them to devise the best ways to keep a bubble aloft.

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Activity: Build an Air-Powered Car

local_070403Students build a model car then move it with their breath. They learn that air pushing against an object can make it move, and consider how engineers use this principle in the design of cars, boats, and other structures.

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