This lesson is designed to help you better understand our environment by doing experiments with air, water, land, energy, and life. It’s your guide to doing, observing, and thinking about your environment. By understanding our environment, we can learn to protect the earth and to use our natural resources wisely for generations to come.
How many of these things do you remember from our previous lessons?
- Energy is the ability to do work.
- Work is moving something against a force over a distance.
- Power measures how quickly work can be done.
- Atoms are the basic building blocks of all things. There are about 100 different kinds of atoms. Molecules are combinations of tightly bound atoms.
- Polymers are large molecules that may contain millions of atoms.
- Atoms are made of smaller particles called electrons, protons, and neutrons.
- Nuclear fusion is one kind of energy. Other forms of energy include: mechanical energy, heat, electrical energy, chemical energy, and light.
- Energy can be converted from one from to another.
- Most of our energy needs are met by burning fossil fuels such as coal, oil, gasoline, and natural gas.
- Using renewable energy-such as solar, wind, water, biomass, and geothermal-could help reduce pollution, prevent global warming, and decrease acid rain.
- Cooling is the removal of heat energy from an object or space and heating is the addition of heat energy to an object or space.
- Plants are the most important biomass energy source.